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Friend in town -- Help me impress her!

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A friend of mine from Chicago will be here for 2 nights next week. I'd like to take her someplace sort of trendy but most importantly with good food (preferably Lower East Side). I was planning to take her to The Stanton Social, but all of a sudden I am second guessing myself and thinking maybe we should go to Apizz or The Orchard (I haven't been to any of them). We are both in our 30's with kids and since she lives in Chicago, we clearly don't get a chance to sit and talk over dinner, so I'd also like to be able to hear one another. (The other night we are seeing a show so we will eat in the theater district.)

Between The Stanton Social, Apizz or The Orchard, does anyone have any strong feelings? Any other suggestions in that area are also welcome!

Thanks!

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  1. I haven't been to Stanton Social b/c it sounds exhausting. You can't go wrong w/either Apizz or The Orchard. I think the prices at Apizz are slightly lower, and the food is Italian. The Orchard is more "New American" w/an Italian twist, and the BYOB policy helps keep dinner costs down.