LA Hound Coming to NYC looking for GOOD FOOD
I'm coming from LA and will be in Manhattan for a week. Looking for a good place for each of these:
Any recommendations appreciated!!!
2) Japanese Izakaya
3) Seafood/Oyster Bar
4) Asian Fusion
5) French (bistro)
6) Spanish Tapas
7) Good CHEAP NYC-only eats
8) Any other unique places!
On my list so far...
-Sushi of Gari
For #3 on your list: Pearl Oyster Bar in Greenwich Village or the Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal (sit at the bar only)
For #4: Jubilee on East 54th (between 1st & 2nd Ave), or for a bigger scene and +$, Balthazar on Spring St. in SoHo. There are also numerous places in SoHo to check out in case Balthazar is too crowded or the wait is too long. A good time to go to Balthazar is late afternoon.
1. Yasuda, or perhaps Kuruma zushi, but be prepared to spend way over $100 per person. Both serve traditional edomae sushi. Gari is a good choice for more creative sushi. I haven't been but Le Miu is probably a good choice too.
2. The only Japanese izakaya I would recommend to an Angelino would be Sakagura. Arguably the best selection of sake in the US, and good food to boot. Besides Sakagura, I think there are far better izakayas around LA than in NYC.
3. As others mention, Pearl is a good place, and the Grand Central Oyster Bar is great for old NY ambiance and decent food, but better to sit at the bar and make a quick pre-meal than sit at the tables and order full meals. I find the raw bar and appetizers are better than the entrees.
4. Not sure what you are looking for in Asian Fusion, but LA is more the place for it. But one thing I would recommend is Indian-Chinese food. The best places are in Queens, though there are a few in Manhattan.
5. French bistros abound in NYC and many are far better than what you can get in LA. It also depends on your price range and degree of hipness you want. There are a ton of options.
6. Contenders are Casa Mono and Tia Pol.
7. Pizza. You should try to hit up some of the better pizza places around NYC. Patsy's in Spanish Harlem, DiFara's, Totonno's in Coney Island, Nick's in Forest Hills may be your best bet for NY style pizza.
8. Turkish. Not well represented in LA. My favorite Manhattan place is Ali Baba on 34th St/3rd Ave.
Also, while some say you should go to Katz's (and by all means, you should), I would say you should first go to Langer's in LA to have a reference point to see which serves the better pastrami. I still say Langers.
Not sure why Basta Pasta is on your list. It's a good place for Japanese-style/inspired pasta, but there are places just as good in LA, IMO. Not sure it's a destination restaurant.
Turkish Cuisine on 9th and 45th(ish) is absolutely delicious and not too expensive. I never remember the name of the dish I order, but it's basically lamb kabobs smothered in melted cheese. Yum.
Taim on Waverly & 7th Ave South/Perry has great Israeli street food (falafel, sabich, etc).
French bistros in NYC are all kind of lame, but I suppose the traditional suggestion would be Balthazar.
Also, if you like cheese, try Artisanal.
Odd that no one's mentioned Jack's Luxury Oyster Bar in the EV. Had the tasting menu there in February and it was one of the best meals of my life.
Also, there's no point in keeping Aburiya Kinnosuke a secret, as New York magazine has written it up. Don't know how it compares to LA, but it stood up to several of the izakaya I went to in Tokyo (Shibuya). They have robata grill, which is like yakitori. Go for the ground chicken grilled on a wooden paddle, the tofu in basket, the pork cheek, and the grapefruit juice shochu cocktail. Great service and a cheap bottom line!
213 E. 45th St., New York, NY 10017
between Second and Third Aves.