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Dec 24, 2000 04:56 PM

Romantic Dinner Near the Plaza

  • d


I have a big night planned, and need recommendations for a Romantic restaurant near the Plaza Hotel. I would prefer something not totally outrageously expensive (I'd like to keep the bill for two under $200), and I need to be able to get a reservation for this coming Thursday (the 28th). French, Italian, or other is fine. I'd love something small and intimate - a nice place to huddle after tea at the plaza and a ride through the park in a handome.

Thanks for your suggestions, chow hounds!


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  1. Though not the best Italian food in town but certainly more than edible I would suggest San Domenico. And, best of all the restaurant is within easy walking distance of the Plaza. I also do not believe that you will have a problem with getting a table for thursday.

    1. I was there a few years ago-March Restaurant at 405 East 58th Street, (212) 754-6272-and it was really romantic and is not far from the Plaza. You might be able to keep the cost down to about $200 for two if you don't drink a lot-I find this is what usually skyrockets the bill. Again, it's been a few years so I can't say if this place meets your "budget." Check out this link:

      1. If you like fish, I recommend Oceana on 54 bet. Park and Madison (easy walk from the Plaza). It has a dim, almost underwater feel conducive to romance (do I smell a proposal in the works?), and the food is innovative and very good. The dinner prix fixe is $65.00 (three courses) - you will have to be careful on the wine to hit under $200 - but it is possible.
        Thurs. res. should not be a problem.

        March, suggested by another poster is EXTREMELY romantic and although I've had hit and miss meals there, it can be truly excellent. My one word of caution is this: Although the prix fixe menus start at $68 pp, the one time a date on a budget tried to take me there for my birthday, the staff was unimpressed (to say the least) with our attempts to watch the bottom line -- we watched their mood grow more and more glacial as we declined champagne to begin the meal, refused (despite pressure) to order the signature caviar beggar's purses at $15 a mouthful, and chose a red wine from the bottom end of the list - despite none too gentle hints to go higher and/or sample a white as well. Needless to say, I was offended for my date, who started feeling like he should be spending more $$ even though we both knew it wasn't right for him financially -- so, proceed with caution - no one needs to feel that pressure on a special occasion!!!! (Other people have found the staff charming, so this may have been a bad one-off night - but I always think one of the tests of a great restaurant is making EVERYONE, even those who can't afford to spend hundreds on wine etc., feel special - and for us, March failed that test.)

        4 Replies
        1. re: Elaine

          Elaine, you are quite perceptive!

          Great suggestions so far. I fear that Oceana and March are a little expensive - this is far from the only expense of the evening, and while romance is key, budgetary concerns cannot be completely flung out the window (as this person will have to tolerate being with me as I am working down those already peaking credit card bills!)

          Other suggestions have included Seppis, which sounds ideal except for the location. I am trying to stay north and east of the plaza. My date works near Seppis and I fear that part of midtown will not illicit the warmest and fuzziest of feelings. A French bistro in that price range, lovely, but not necessarily spectacular, and in the East 60s seems, afterall, to be what I am really looking for. (The early posts have helped me to zero in on this).


          (and thanks, Elaine, for the very wise words about March)

          1. re: D Sonenberg

            You might try Jubilee (54th bet. 1st and 2nd) - I haven't been there for two years - but it's a tiny French bistro, very warm and cozy, with traditional type food done caringly. It's not terribly expensive - assuming you each had three courses, the food part would come to around $100 - leaving a comfortable margin for wine, tip, etc. Unfortunately, it's a bit of a hike from the Plaza....

            1. re: D Sonenberg

              Jo Jo, a french bistro owned by Jean Georges Vongerichten on E. 64th near 3rd ave may meet your needs. I would recommend sitting upstairs as it is quieter there. The entrees and desserts were excellent, the apps were not as special.

              1. re: Aaron Tell

                What happened to all the talk about Jo Jo closing? Is that still happening?

          2. For kinda downtown funky and romantic,but uptown,try Seppis',the uptown sibling of Raouls,,in back of the Parker Meridian on 56th st.Its' good French bistro food,and the prices should leave room for a good bottle of wine.