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Best Restaurant in NYC

  • l

Spending Labor Day weekend in the Big Apple. Have
only been there onces and ate at the following
restaurants: Smith and Wolenskys Steak House, Cafe de
Artiste (French-upper west side), The Post House
(Steak, East 63rd St), Giovinnias (Italian of course),
and Vongs (didn't care for this one). Loved them all
(except Vongs) but want to try someplace different but
do not want "ethnic" cuisine. Must have non smoking
area and good wine list. Tempted to try Lugers but
description sounds dark, dull, and outdated. What to
do?

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  1. If money's no object, go to Jo Jo. Get reservations
    early. Your meal, with wine, should run you around
    $50-55 for dinner.

    If you'd prefer something cheaper, go to one of the
    really good Chinatown restaurants, like Evergreen
    Shanghai (c. $15/person) on Mott St., or - even cheaper
    - New York Noodle Town (corner of Bayard and Bowery),
    $5-teens/person.

    Did you like Cafe des Artistes? I was very unhappy with
    them a few years ago, but it's long enough ago that I'd
    rather not make an issue of it.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Michael

      Peter Luger serves, I think, the best steak anywhere.
      I don't know if it even HAS a wine list.

      I've been very unhappy at Cafe des Artistes the last
      couple times I've been there.

      Since the places you mentioned are all high end, and
      you specifically said no "ethnic" cuisine, you might
      try Alison on Dominick St., we had a really great meal
      there, French/American food.

    2. My husband and I both agree that we've always gotten mediocre steak at Smith and Wollensky. However, we have been to Peter Luger once and in terms of New York steakhouses, that's the only one we'll ever go back to. We both travel quite a bit for business and I've eaten at a lot of steakhouses in Texas and in Chicago. Peter Luger's porterhouse was the best piece of meat I have ever eaten- well marbled, incredibly tender, excellent flavor. The decor and atmosphere makes me think "testosterone filled beer hall" and I thought that was half of the charm!

      If it's not too humid, you may want to take advantage of some of the restaurants that have gardens like Barolo in SoHo for Italian or Home in the West Village.

      1. Ahh..my favorite part of a trip - restaurant
        planning! If you like steak, I urge you to
        consider going to Spark's Steakhouse. They have
        a superb wine list and great food. I just
        tried to check and see if they won any Wine
        Spectator awards but the site's temporarily
        unavailable.

        Also check the Gourmet restaurant reader survey (on
        Epicurious.com).

        happy eating,
        Grace

        1. Since you want "non-ethnic" food, and since it sounds
          from the previous establishments you've been to that
          price is no object, I recommend the following two
          restaurants:

          One If By Land, Two If By Sea - very classy place
          (candle-lit, piano player, etc.), was once Aaron
          Burr's carriage house (if you're into colonial
          history), the Beef Wellington is their signature dish,
          and it is outstanding! In the West Village, 17 Barrow
          St (be careful, it's easy to miss).

          Aureole - just as classy, decorated with bushels of
          fresh flowers, formerly some famous person's townhouse
          (can't remember who), ANYTHING on the menu will be
          outstanding, they are constantly rated at or near the
          top of Zagat's NYC restaurant guide. 34 East 61st St.

          Hope you enjoy them, I know I always do!

          1. An American Place, 565 Lexington Ave., in the Beverly
            Hotel.