Good Restaurants in a 10-block radius of 30th and 3rd
I have to disagree with the suggestion for Da Ciro, on Lexington between 33rd and 34th. I just ate there recently - and granted, I've only eaten there once, so maybe they had an off day - but my pasta dish was incredibly salty, so much so that it was totally inedible. I've never been served such a salty dish in a restaurant. Two of my dining companions also said their dishes were so salty as to be barely edible as well.
On the other hand, I've had consistently good meals and good service at Penelope.
RGR, I'm surprised. There was a short period where the pastry chef was on vacation and they were shipping in their croissants from Balthazer and they were not very good. Also, some days, when the weather is very wet and humid, I was told the croissants sometimes don't rise as well, something I wouldn't know about since I'm not a baker.
But no, the pastry chef is still the same as the one under the old ownership and the croissants I think are some of the best in the city. And I'd say 99.9% of the time, I've only had perfection there.
-Lunch/brunch special bento box at Iron Sushi (3rd and 31st) for $7.50
-Bamiyan's amazing Middle Eastern food (26th and 3rd)
-Huge butter dosais at Chennai Garden (26th nd 3rd) for $8
-Penelope for brunch - big scones, good deals
-Woo ri jip deli in Koreatown on W 32nd for cheap and yummy take home jap chae noodles
-Kunjip at 9 W 32nd in Koreatown for amazing Korean food. Prior to this I didn't think there was such a thing as gourmet Korean food.
-Tre Pomodoro on 3rd and 37th has great sandwiches w/ prosciutto for cheap
-Sarge's deli (3rd and 36-37th) has a stellar matzoh ball soup and good beef wellington. Heaping portions too.
You can also check out www.menupages.com for restaurants in Murray Hill and see their menus online.
Unfortunately I have yet to find quality Chinese or Vietnamese food in the area, so I head down to Chinatown on the M15 to get my fix (and shop at Trader Joe's.)
The other thing I haven't found in my 1.5 years here is a good bakery/patisserie with flaky croissants and tarts. Yet there are dunkin donuts every 2 blocks. Anyone know of a good place? (But not the bakery on 2nd and 26th, I don't remember the name but I haven't liked any of my purchases from them.)
Do you mean the bakery on the corner of *3rd* & 26th? The name also escapes me. Just the way the baked goods look -- not very appealing -- would discourage me from ever buying anything.
It's a bit of a trek, but you might want to try Musette, the French patisserie, on 3rd, near 19th St.
For Vietnamese, have you tried Bao Noodles? I think the food is very good, and if you're willing to go to Bamiyan, Bao is not all that far from there, on 2nd, just off 23rd.
Chez Laurence on East 38th at Madison has the perfect flakey croissants you seek. Perfect "crack" on the outside, soft and buttery inside. May be a tad much of a trip for where you are, but I guarantee you won't be disappointed. Great pastries too, but make sure you get the ones done on the premises. The restaurant recently changed ownership and for some reason is now incorporating some items from Balthazer in with their on-the-premises made pastries. I don't know why as theirs are far superior. I also love their homemade chocolate dipped cookies w/jam filling - yum!
I agree with Bao Noodles, it's on 22nd and 2nd, but worth the extra distance and they'll most likely deliver to you!
Penelope's is great too, even for dinner, but tends to get crowded quickly.
Just went to Choice on 27th and 3rd for brunch--it wasn't amazing, but for $14.95, it definitely had a decent menu...great place to meet friends.
Thank you all for your suggestions. My findings:
I love the Koreatown suggestion. My favorite now is Gahm Mi Oak, where they cut the kimchee right at the table.
Turkish Kitchen was excellent.
Cosette was fine, but I don't think I would rush back.
Country was excellent, but very expensive for what it is.
Bao Noodles is great for noodles, though I found the papaya salad very disappointing. We now order in noodles, though, very often.
I still haven't tried AQ Cafe, though it's a great suggestion and I look forward to trying it.
Our favorite Indian in the neighborhood is now Chennai Garden, which serves wonderful dosas and an incredible lunch buffet for $6.95!!
Artisanal is also excellent.
Again, thank you all for your help.
Rare is definitely great for Burgers
Rio Grande still makes good frozen drinks and quite decent Mexican Don't go on Thursday night if you want dinner - Pick up night
Penelope is a cute neighborhood place.
Da Ciro's for the Robiola Foccacio- OMG- so rich, but delicious
Artisinal- upscale for anything Cheese dish
Wolfgangs- Good steaks, but extremely crowded.
El Pote for Spanish food- 38th and 2nd.
Great take out chicken- Chicken Place- 3rd Ave between 38th and 39th.
Benjamin's on 33rd and 2nd is my absolute favorite. It's where I go if I want to be sure that I have a nice meal in a nice atmosphere. It's a friendly place with a lot of regulars. I have yet to have a bad meal there.
I second Penelope for weekend brunch (but get there early, lines from quickly) and Ali Baba.
I live on Umi Sushi on 31 between Park and Lex for cheap take out sushi. To stay in it's OK, but lacking atmosphere.
There's good authentic Tibetan food at Tibetan kitchen at 31 and 3rd. A lot of tables in a small space though...
Welcome to the neighborhood!
Da Ciro, on Lexington between 33rd and 34th.
Try the Robiola pizza, it's outstanding,
so are the pastas, etc etc. There's a wood burning
oven; no attitude, friendly. Downstairs sometimes
gets loud. I think they are closed this
weekend, open again next week.
One of the best in the neighborhood.
So many great places, many already mentioned. Here are some more:
La Petite Auberge - http://www.lapetiteaubergeny.com
Cosette - http://www.cosette-bistro.com
Turkish Kitchen - http://www.turkishkitchenny.com
Bamiyan - http://www.baminyan.com
Bao Noodles - http://www.baonoodles.com
Carl's Steaks - http://www.carlssteaks.com
Sarge's Deli - http://www.sargesdeli.com
I Trulli & Inoteca - http://www.itrulli.com
AQ Cafe - http://www.aquavit.org
Byblos - http://www.byblosnyc.com
Ethos, 3rd, b/t 33rd & 34th - Greek (Menu on menupages)
Choice Kitchen and Cocktails (New - I haven't tried it yet.) - http://www.choicekitchennyc.com
Lexie, Welcome to the neighborhood and Bon Appetit!
Waterfront Ale House
for French Bistro:
Curry Leaf (takeout)
Muhgiddarah (sp?) Sandwich from Kalustyan's
Grilled Chicken Club from Penelope
Chicken Meatball Sandwich from Penelope
Penny Egg Sandwich from Penelope
Chicken Parmigiano sandwich from Bistango
that should get you started...
That's mujadara at Kalustyan's. I get it by the container, rather than as a sandwich. It's great!
Many good recommendations here. I'll add Bao Noodles, between 22nd and 23rd Sts. on 2nd Av. I know there's been some criticism that the place is not authentic (I think it's supposed to be somewhat of a Vietnamese/French fusion) and perhaps not that good, but I've had several very satisfying meals there.
11 Madison Park at 24th St. and Madison is slightly past your 10-block radius but well worth your consideration (caveat: I haven't been there yet since Chef Humm was hired, but I've been hearing and reading so many raves and liked the place before that, anyway).
its a good food area. I like pizza 33 for just good, normal slices. Mishima for sushi (32nd and lex) - just went last night. Blue smoke on 27th and park has awesome barbecue. Sophies is good, cheap cuban food - 2 locations 34th and madison and 40th and lexington. also steaks at wolfgangs are supposed to be very good. enjoy the new digs