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Good Asian Eats- Midtown East

Any suggestions for restaurants in the East 50s area? Preferably upscale (but not too pretentious) Asian-- either Indian, Thai, Vietnamese or Japanese. Thanks!

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  1. mint is lovely for delicious, upscale indian on east 50th

    1 Reply
    1. re: christina_nyc

      I ate at mint with 4 other people. The food was bland and they forgot to bring out one of our orders

    2. Shun Lee Palace (Chinese)
      155 E 55th St
      New York, NY 10022
      Mon-Sat 12:00pm-11:30pm
      Sun 12:00pm-11:00pm
      Tel: (212) 371-8844
      Fax: (212) 752-1936

      There is a place next door but I think they were defectors of Shun Lee. Ate there once and just thought the food was OK. Shun Lee is better.

      Restaurant Riki 248 E 52nd Street - New York, NY. 212-888-3275
      Note they got a $20 min per person. Its good if you want to go drink.

      Yama 49 (Japanese)
      308 E 49th St (Cross Street: Second Avenue)
      New York, NY 10017View Map
      (212) 355-3370

      Vong (French/Thai)
      200 E 54th St
      New York, NY 10022
      (212) 486-9592

      Peking Duck House
      236 E 53 STREET (Cross Street: 3rd Avenue)
      New York, NY 10022
      (212) 759-8260

      Don't go to Mr Chow unless you want to get ripped.

      2 Replies
      1. re: designerboy01

        Aah...good old Shun Lee Palace. Had alligator there once. As much as I hate to say this...it tasted like chicken.

        Definitely upscale, classy, high ceilings. What I kind of remember most about it, for some reason, is how dark it was. Felt kind of like midnight at 4pm.

        1. re: Polecat

          I like alligator. I had alligator paws in Canton as part of a snake banquet. They had to get a specail chef to cook the dishes I wanted. Alligator is good for people with asthma.

      2. There are a few options (although limited) that range from yummy to sucky.

        I-Chin (Indo-Chinese): East 50th between 2nd/3rd Ave
        Menchanko-Tei Midtown East (Japanese): East 45th/Lex Ave
        Oriental Noodle Shop (Chinese): East 45/Lex Ave
        Our Place Shanghai Tea Garden (Chinese): East 55th/Lex Ave
        Peking Duck House (Chinese): East 53rd/3rd Ave
        Vong (Thai): East 54th/3rd Ave
        Mint (Indian), is excellent as Christina mentioned above.
        Amma (Indian): East 51st

        8 Replies
        1. re: Foodaholic

          I think she wanted upscale and in the 50s. I'm not sure if I agree with Oriental Noodle Shop.

          1. re: designerboy01

            I know Oriental Noodle Shop isn't considered as upscale. I figured I'd loop it in there anyways as its a solid place for Chinese uptown.

            How do you know newbiefoodie is a female? :) Just kidding.

            1. re: Foodaholic

              I actually am female-- good assumption designerboy01. Thanks for all the suggestions-- definitely helps. Foodaholic-- have you actually been to I-Chin, and if so, can you suggest anything?

                1. re: newbiefoodie

                  Hi Newbie,

                  I have been to I-Chin only once, it was good but a tad expensive for two cuisines that I am apprehensive to paying a lot for (Indian / Chinese). I enjoyed their appetizers (Dual Sided Shrimp and Lamb meat spring rolls) and my entree was just okay (Spinach with Paneer Balls).

                2. re: Foodaholic

                  Oriental Noodle shop isn't even the best cheap Chinese on the block. I much prefer Hop Won (or whatever it's called, it's the sister shop to Hing Won on 48th) a couple doors down from Oriental Noodle Shop. Better quality fare overall, though they're both prone to inconsistency.

              1. re: Foodaholic

                Curious if anyone has been to the new Indian/Chinese I-Chin on 50th Street....looks upscale; not cheap but menu looks interesting...

              2. Chin Chin...Grand Marnier Shrimp...yum. They also have a little known Peking Duck special that is only $34 a person.

                1. If you want the best quality sushi in NYC, you're within a short walking distance to either Kuruma (west) or Yasuda (south). Kuruma is on 47th/Madison, and Yasuda is on 43rd/3rd. If you don't feel like walking so far, or don't want the damage to your wallet, then the next tier of sushi places are Ichimura (2nd/54th), Seo (52nd/2nd), and Tsushima (47th/3rd) (probably in that order).

                  Other honorable mention for upscalish Japanese in the area would be Sakagura (43rd/3rd), Megu (1st/49th?), or Oga (47th/3rd).

                  1. If we are going down to the 40s there is a good Japanese place. Its like a cheaper Masa at about $40 a person.
                    The place is called Tsukushi on 41st near 2nd avenue.
                    Its up to the chef to bring out what is fresh for the day.
                    I had some raw scallops that were really fresh. It ranks up there as some good chow. Its really a Japanese drinking place and it is small. I did go with a group of 8 once and we had a good time.


                    If you are in the 40s there is Sushi Yasuda. I don't recommend Sakagura for dinner but better for lunch. There is also Riki on 45th which is probably my favorite Japanese restaurant. I rank Yasuda as most upscale. Riki and Tsukushi are really Isakayas. Riki has one fun dish where they take out this whole stove and they make rice cakes. Everyone gets a little spatula to scoop up their rice cakes. They also got a green tea tiramisu that is very good. Last time I went you had to ask for it. At the new Riki I saw it on the menu but didn't try it (on 52nd near 2nd).

                    1. Thanks for all the great suggestions. We ended up going to MINT, which I thought was only okay. My friend and I started with the vegetable samosas, which were wrapped in phyllo dough for a slight variation. I then had an eggplant potato dish while my friend had the chicken tikka masala. One thing that really bothered me was that upon being seated we were only given the cocktail/appetizer menu. We go the dinner menu after we ordered drinks. Perhaps, that's standard but I just felt it was a little sneaky.

                      It seems that there is an overwhelming consensus about Riki. I had heard from my Japanese friend that that it was better to go there with a Japanese person since there are two menus. Does anyone know if there are different things on the two menus? And also, what would you recommend trying there?

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: newbiefoodie

                        Well I can say this about Riki's the old one on 45th is better in terms of the food. They have one dish where they take out a stove and pour some pancake mix. Everyone gets their own small spatula to pick from the hotplate. Its around $11 and its in English. I think they have translations of their japanese menus.
                        They also have a green tea tiramisu that is pretty good.