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CHEAP eats in NYC

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[This post was moved from the Boston board --The Chowhound Team]

I realize that there is a New York board for this purpose, but I figured I would try this question on New Englanders, who truly know the meaning of cheap. I am traveling to NYC this weekend for 5 days with less than $200. Does anyone have any recommendations/pleasant memories? I've experienced differing ideas of cheap in discussions with New Yorkers.

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  1. Odessa on Ave. A or B between East. 1st and 2nd (or maybe a little further up). Very filling cheap eastern european food. Cafe Jaffa on St. Mark's Place, on the healthy side. Here's a great site:

    Link: http://www.villagevoice.com/issues/01...

    1. I'd second the Odessa. In fact, there are a TON of other great, cheap places in the E. Village.

      One place that I can't get enough of is Flor's Kitchen, on 149 First Ave. between 9th and 10th. Tiny Venezuelan place with these great empanadas. They have an unusual, thick, ultra-crispy corn crust. One of those and a side of their delicious fried yuca with avocado sauce will fill you up just fine. Also don't miss their great chicha.

      You also can't go wrong with any of the Indian places on 6th Ave. (between 1st and 2nd I think). They're pretty much all the same (it's joked that they all share the same kitchen) - usually the smaller they are the cheaper they are.

      Finally, an old favorite is Meskerem, an Ethiopian place at 468 W. 47th St. (9th and 10th). In the old days, I used to go with a friend and both get filled up on a $7.95 vegetarian platter. Probably a little more expensive now, but I bet still a bargain.

      Link: http://www.florskitchen.com/

      2 Replies
      1. re: Ezra

        I second Meskerem. It is probabbly the best ethiopian in NYC... at that address not the village one.

        1. re: the rogue
          j
          JessicaKlonsky

          To go really cheap: get an iced coffee at the Balthazar take-out shop on Spring St. for about 1.75 (really good iced coffee). While you're there grab three or four of the free samples they always have by the register--more often than not its raisin bread. Then head back to Broadway to Dean and Deluca and hit the baker for more bread samples, then the cheese section. They usually also have some olive oil out to try, chips and salsa, bread and jam. You can make a meal out of this, maybe toward the end of your stay when you really are low on dough. I'm not kidding! In my unemployed days I did this more than once.

      2. Don't overlook the carts on the street for bagels and danish in the morning, Hebrew National hot dogs for lunch.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Coyote

          Spouse has chimed in that Ray's Pizza, all over the city, makes for a great cheap classic NY meal. Also, dim sum at many Chinatown restaurants is very filling and reasonable. AND, the vegetable markets on many corners in the city have GREAT salad bars. Eat that cheaply and you can afford a blow the budget lunch or dinner!

        2. Head out to Jackson Heights in Queens, hit up some Indian and South American restaurants and stands...I went to a great (and cheap) Colombian restaurant on Roosevelt Av, though I don't remember the name.....I bet many of them are very good.....check out the Outer-Boroughs board for more suggestions

          1. The Vegetarian Dim Sum House on Pell St. in Chinatown is fantastic and everything on their dim sum menu is just 2 bucks. I recommend the treasure balls (basically anything with taro in it), also the sticky rice in lotus leaves. Enjoy!

            1. What kind of food do you like? For your budget, there's still lots of good choices. If Asian food is your thing, take the 7 train to the last stop (Main Street, Flushing, Queens). You can eat for less than $5/pp at many places. Don't be afraid to venture off into the side streets.