In New York City’s West Village, De Santos, a high-end Italian restaurant inhabits a unique space that was once home to legendary New York rockers, writers, and artists such as Janis Joplin, Bob Dylan, Edward Albee and Jean Michel Basquiat.

If they only knew what their beloved haunt would turn into over 30 years later, I imagine even Basquiat might have been surprised. As of August 1st, the rustic restaurant is now the first in New York completely run on iPads. The future of restaurants is here. Instead of menus, waiters bring you iPad 2s. Instead of bulky credit card machines. Simply swipe it on Square.

While for many traditional restaurant owners, it would seem prohibitively expensive to replace simple notepads with $500 iPads, De Santos owners claim the new system will save them money by streamlining its ordering system. It’s also a win for attracting hip customers. “The customers love it,” says Sebastian Gonella, one of the owners and co-founders of De Santos to Inc.com. “Who doesn’t like an iPad? They go nuts.”

The iPads will be used for taking orders, sending them wirelessly to the kitchen, and paying for the bill via a customized point-of-sale system. The iPad’s software will even show customers the entire specifications of each dish on the menu. Take a look at the iPad app below, courtesy of Inc:

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While we’ve seen many iPad use in restaurants take off, particularly in Asian cultures, this is the first in New York City, but definitely not the last.

Screen shot 2011 08 22 at 12.21.22 PM 520x343 The first restaurant to rely completely on iPads in New York City