HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >


Manganaros (9th Ave)

  • s

A friend has invited me(and a few others) to have lunch at Manganaros on 9th ave tomorrow. I have heard about it. I hear it's a sandwich place. "Hero Boy" or something. What should I order? Is there a 'specialty of the house'? Thank you.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. There are two. One is the old school Manganero's that is a deli and the other makes sandwiches and is very new.
    If your going to the older one try a Italian Meat combo sandwich or some of their pasta's.

    2 Replies
    1. re: SLAP

      The newer Manganaro's "Hero-Boy" has the best lasgna in Manhattan, maybe New York. The two places are owned by feuding Manganaro brothers who apparently haven't spoken in thirty or forty years, although they own adjacent buildings. Who knows if either or both are still alive?

      "Hero Boy" claims to have invented the term "hero sandwich".

      1. re: Mark DiBlasi

        I had no -idea- that that was the origin (the battling bros) of the adjacent Manganaro restaurants! I've been going to the "Hero Boy" on and off, for almost THIRTY years(!), and have found the meatballs and tomato sauce to be superb. Lately i've been also getting into the mushroom ravioli, with a couple meatballs on the side. You can get the mushroom ravioli with -mushroom- sauce (a couple bucks more expensive) or the tomato sauce. Always a winner, IMO.

    2. Here's a link about Hero Boy. The meatball sub is what I'd order! pat

      Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

      1. I'd stay away from the chicken and eggplant parm, personally. Neither is particularly well-seasoned in the breading dept. The aforementioned meatball, however, is very tasty and the sausage and peppers has always looked like the real deal, though I've not sampled it.

        1. I can't remember the exact name, but it's something like mountain high or something like that. You'll recognize it when you see it. If you wan't a cold sandwich, go for it. It's like: salami, capppacola, provolone, ham, pepppers, oil, vinegar, some other stuff as well I belive. Real good, Real filling.

          1 Reply
          1. re: DiscoStu

            My brother got two party-sized heros from Manganaro's for his kid's birthday party. IIRC they were each about three feet lon, one Italian cold cut and one American cold cut. Both were good -- better than I expected. I liked the Italian better. DiscoStu described it pretty well.

          2. Just wanted to mention all the fond memories I have of Manganaros. Growing up in the NY area, it was sort of a family tradition to buy a big sandwich..2 or 3 feet long of asssorted Italian cold cuts, cheeses, peppers, and whatever else could be put on a sandwich...and take it on a car trip...they would provide a cutting board and a sharp knife..and my bros, parents and I would carve it up in the car..Great stuff...glad they're still at it.

            1 Reply
            1. re: 9lives

              I second that memory of getting sandwiches from Manganaro's on drives out of town and stopping somewhere by the road in NJ or upstate NY to eat it. Good stuff, good memories.

            2. Another vote for the cold Italian hero sandwich (the mile high?). My stomach is growling just thinking about it. Warning-be very, very hungry.

              1. s
                Saul Rabinowitz

                Update on the Manganaros front.

                Been there today. I had the lasagna and the chicken parm. The lasagna was terrible. It was soggy noodles with watery riccotta like cheese and two, yes, two,thin slices of sausage and when asked the third time if I would like sauce and responding "YES" i got a dab of red, the only red in the lasagna. The chix parm was tasteless, completely. I had a bit of the spaghetti with squid marinara style. ok, the spaghetti was soggy and unsalted/flavorless, and the squid was ok. Now I know what to avoid in the future when asked to dine on 9th avenue.lol.

                9 Replies
                1. re: Saul Rabinowitz

                  Was it packed as always? I dont get it. Ive never had the heros but the prepared foods I have tried were awful - one time last year I had an excellent fried rice ball so maybe thats the route.

                  1. re: Mark M
                    Saul Rabinowitz

                    The line was out the door. Waiting for a "NEXT!" call I admired the clean looking place and the large, heavy plates and clean FLATWARE! No plastic forks here. Unfortunately, I was very dissapointed. BUT, by the looks of the surrounding nabe, the pickin's are SLIM! So, we made it by with what little sausage and lots of cheesey type stuff we could get in the lasgna and a half eaten 'chix parm' that is better in the worst bodega at which I have ever dined. So, yes, most people ain't got a clue to save their lives when it comes to food. Too bad. We will just have to suffer until we find nirvana.

                    1. re: Saul Rabinowitz

                      "So, yes, most people ain't got a clue to save their lives when it comes to food."

                      You went to a place called Hero Boy and got lasagne. I am not sure who deserves to be called clueless. Had you had some of the other things mentioned in this thread, or my personal favorite, prosciutto with fresh mozzarella and roasted peppers on a HERO, or my other favorite Sausage and peppers on a HERO, or the meatball HERO, you might not be complaining so much.

                      "BUT, by the looks of the surrounding nabe, the pickin's are SLIM!"

                      As has been discussed on this board many times, 9th avenue from 37th-57th is one of the richest chowing neighborhoods in Manhattan, if not the city, for quality and variety. From Italian to Greek to Mexican, Soul food, pastries, bakeries, west African, Thai, seafood, Afghan, Indian, high end, low end, even marketing at Central fish and the Amish market. Feel free to miss it all, but Clueless? Well if that aint the pot calling the kettle black...

                      1. re: J. Pine
                        Saul Rabinowitz

                        Yeah, clueless. It is one mans opinion. I took the advice on the lasagna. I don't like cold cut sandwiches at all. Sue me. I don't like anything that isn't cooked with respect. Sausage and peppers is not digestible for me. Sue me. Nobody else at the table was terribly impressed either. Even the spaghetti with squid was questioned by Sasha. Manacham asked twice about the baked ziti and was rudely asked to order something else. So he did. The eggplant parm he had was wishy-washy he said. Sorry to offend you, sir. We just don't agree.

                        Amish market is ok, tho.

                        What Greek place on 9th Ave.? I'll order exactly what you say. Pray tell.

                        1. re: Saul Rabinowitz

                          Offense is not taken at our disagreement over the quality of the food. Offense is taken at your judgment of people who eat there and enjoy the food as "clueless". Why in an otherwise decent review of a place would you feel it necessary to interject an insult of people who would obviously be reading your insult? Actually, why did you feel it necessary to insult anybody over their choice of eating establishment at all. Disagreement does not mean the other side is clueless. In fact, many of the posters have eaten there many times, tried many different things and have made informative opinions about what dishes are better than others. That is the absolute opposite of clueless. Your comment about the neighborhood indicates more opinions without knowledge on your part. If you want to know something, ask. Dont insult, then ask.

                          The two Greek places are Poseiden (sp?)bakery between 44-45th. Nice pastries but nowhere to sit, although Rudy's next door can be a great spot on off hours (arguably the best jukebox in the city). The other is a good restaurant up around 49th or 50th called, I think, Uncle Nick's. Good fish, but not cheap.

                          1. re: J. Pine
                            Michele Cindy

                            The eggplant parm can be pretty good (crisp and thin) if you order it before it's laying around too long. I get the sauce on the side so that I can put on exactly how much I want and not drench the sandwich. As for there pastas, forget them. On a side note, the one thing I don't care for is their lettuce. When it comes to subs I prefer shredded ice berg. They use romain and it just doesn't go on a sub/hero.

                            1. re: J. Pine
                              Saul Rabinowitz

                              Yes, you are correct, but I wasn't addressing you, sir. I was refering to the gentleman who's idea it was to dine there. He invited us, with good intentions, to an informal type lunch, praising the food, and not delivering. If even one of us, him excluded, was the least bit satisfied, I would digress, but that was not the case. I thank you for your input. Perhaps next time, if there is such a time, I will head YOUR advice and dine accordingly. Nothing against cold cut sandwiches, I like hot cooked foods. Cold cuts are ok for noshing on, a snack perhaps. That's just me. Sausage is great, but the preparation of sausage and peppers, not being what it should be regardless, is not something that sits well with me at all. I make it at home on rare occasion, but I choose to grill my sausages.
                              I am not from the nabe. I walked there from Pen station, and from that angle the nabe is bare. I did see a place called T.S. Ma. It looks, and sounds, good. But I had a date to attend.

                              I will try Uncle Nicks, but if the reviews of Greek style restaurants mean anything here, I should probably avoid it at all costs.(Tho I appreciate your referral)

                              1. re: Saul Rabinowitz

                                I get Uncle Nick's delivery now and again. It is serviceable.

                                I would strongly suggest Turco, a "fast food" Meditteranean concept on 43rd & 9th. The food is very good, as are the prices.

                                You should really skip Manganaro's and go to Sergimmo on 35th & 9th. Their sandwiches and prepared goods are very good.

                                1. re: Saul Rabinowitz

                                  Crap, just saw the note about the age of this post. Maybe it's time for a new thread on Manganaro...

                    2. Wow , I can't believe that place is still around. It was the home to the 6 foot hero back in the 70's!

                      4 Replies
                        1. re: thegforceny

                          Hero Boy is still around. It's the other Manganaro's Grosseria that closed last year.