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Lunch Adventures Around 17th & Park Ave S.

foodiegrl Aug 31, 2006 10:56 PM

Am coming to NYC for a week next month. I'll be attending a food event for two days, but will be on my own for the few days before & after.

Since I will be working from our New York office, I can't venture too far. However, the office location seems ideal - right above the greenmarket, and spitting distance from Gramercy/Flatiron.

Any good recs for a lunch of any caliber?
(Please no Whole Foods or TJ's)

Will Shake Shack still be open?
Anything along the 6 Line could also be fair game...

Thanks in advance!

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  1. c
    cricri7 Sep 1, 2006 12:34 AM

    There's Pax at the corner of 23rd street which makes really good food. It is quite simple however, salads, soups and sandwiches but they are great!

    1. g
      gingersweetiepie Sep 1, 2006 01:24 AM

      oh god, where would i start?

      as usual, i recommend casa mono on 17th and irving.

      craftbar is on broadway near 19th.

      many mixed reviews but you can get a decent lunch and/or drinks at barca18 on park ave so + broadway. the space is soulless but what can i say? it's truly one of the better sangrias in town.

      via emilia is on park ave so. decent italian. pizza fresca on 20th btwn park ave so and broadway is underrated for its pizza, especially if you're in the neighborhood. (my amazing, charming, italian language instructor insists its the best pizza outside of italy)

      if you want a little more upscale, just do the tavern room at gramercy tavern. parea has gotten nice reviews too, which is right next door.

      and yes, the shack will still be open.

      don't forget les halles too on park ave in the 20s. steak tartare done tableside, mmmmmmmmmmm. nice with a glass of red, but be careful not to fall asleep at the desk when you get back to work.

      1. l
        lvecch Sep 1, 2006 02:08 AM

        I second La Pizza Fresca. The pizza puttanesca is amazing.

        On that same street, I also like Mizu - very good sushi at reasonable prices.

        1. r
          RGR Sep 1, 2006 05:24 AM

          The area surrounding your office is teeming with excellent places for lunch.

          Casa Mono (Mario Batali's Spanish tapas) and Via Emilia (Italian) are good suggestions. (Note that Via Emilia is cash only.)


          Is Parea serving lunch? If so, I recommend going there since the modern Green cuisine is excellent. It's on 20th St., b/t Park Av. S. & B'way.

          Barbounia, on the corner of Park Av. S. & 20th St., serves lunch. The Mediterranean food is tasty, and the space is very attractive.


          Blue Water Grill, on the corner of Union Sq. W. & 16th St., is a good place to go if you like fish and seafood.


          Devi, on 18th St., b/t B'way & 5th Av., serves some of the most superb Indian food to be found anywhere. The space on two levels has unusual and elegant decor. Their $24 3-course lunch is a true bargain.


          Fleur de Sel is on 20th St., b/t B'way & 5th. Delicious modern French cuisine served in a small room with stylish contemporary. Another place with a bargain $25 3-course lunch prix-fixe.


          1. c
            carlspackler Sep 1, 2006 06:48 AM

            I second Via Emillia, but note that they have moved to East 21st Street between Park Ave and Broadway.

            MetroCafe & Wine Bar is also great for lunch. They are also on East 21st across the street from Via Emillia. Good burgers and salads, and also some dim sum appetizers, the only place I know of that serves that in the neighborhood.

            Blue Smoke on East 27th St and Park Ave gets dissed a lot on this board, but I think the pulled pork sandwich with a beer is the perfect lunch!

            1. e
              eeee Sep 1, 2006 01:02 PM

              If you want to get some takeout or something light, the lasagna at Pure Food and Wine - which they also serve at their takeaway - is terrific and this is the season to eat it. It's a raw food restaurant and there's nothing cooked in it. The restaurant itself is also open for lunch, I think, but don't quote me on that.

              1 Reply
              1. re: eeee
                RGR Sep 1, 2006 02:16 PM

                I agree that Pure Food and Wine's Zucchini & Tomato Lasagna is delicious. For me, it and the gorgeous back garden are the *only* two reasons to eat there.

                The restaurant is not open for lunch. Their takeaway, which is on 17th St., just east of Irving Pl., is open from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.


              2. l
                Lucia Sep 1, 2006 01:45 PM

                Since most of these are sit-down recommendations, I'll recommend a few less formal options. City Bakery and Taralluci e Vino are both on 18th St., on opposite sides of 5th Ave. 71 Irving (at that address) has good sandwiches, salads, and other simple foods. Cafe Medina on 17th St. between 5th and Broadway is also a good basic lunch option. Chop't (not sure of address) is supposed to be good for salads (never been). There's a sausage place called Mandler's on 17th St. between 5th and Broadway that I've also never been too.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Lucia
                  wleatherette Sep 1, 2006 02:25 PM

                  cafe medina seconded. their soups (homemade) are generally wonderful, and i think their salads are much better than those at chop't.
                  also on 17th is ennju, a cafeteria-style japanese place. i've not tried the sushi, but they have a small japanese salad bar that i really like.

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