Dinner for 2 for $125
We have 2 nights in Manhattan at the start of our vacation next month. I'd love to have recommendations for yummy food that won't break our budget...the $125 is before tax & tip. No hole in the wall...decent restaurant. I'm thinking American, French or Italian food. Is such a thing possible in NYC?
Check out the Babbo pasta tasting menu, a great deal at $64 apiece. Ideally, you need to reserve 30 days in advance, but they leave a couple bar tables open for walk-ins.
There are a lot of very good restaurants in Manhattan in that price range (of course drinks, wine/beer choice, number of courses, etc. can drive up or down the price. And where in Manhattan will you be? In the Chelsea area, I'd recommend Le Zie (Venetian) on 7th Ave @ 22nd St. or Red Cat 10th @ 24th St. But I'm sure there are dozens of places in the Village and East Village that meet your criteria.
Surprisingly, my wife got out of The Tasting Room -- my single favorite restaurant in nyc--for $106 before tip the other night. We each had 3 "taste" portions, mostly of seafood, a glass of wine and split one dessert.
Given the very low wine mark-up, I think that Landmarc in Tribecca is a good destination. No reservations taken so you can decide last minute. Food's excellent.
As others have said, your price range keeps you in the ballpark for many places that are more than decent but below the top rungs.
I love the Mercer Kitchen for the decor...and the food. It is not as good as it once was, but it is a beautiful restaurant!
If you can get a table at Balthazar, you should go.
If you like live jazz, there's the Blue water grill downstairs. Their fish and seafood is the best. There's a little restaurant in the East village called Jules. It is a french bistro where you won't break your budget and there will be money left over after dinner to have a glass of champagne while listening to the music. If I remember correctly, a glass of Mumm cordon rouge is 10 or 12$, which is really cheap for NY.
Another french bistro where the tables are close together and it is a bit on the noisy side, but the food and service are excellent is Lucien on 1st avenue near Houston.They really take care of their clients.