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!
Shun Lee Palace (Chinese)
155 E 55th St
New York, NY 10022
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
200 E 54th St
New York, NY 10022
Peking Duck House
236 E 53 STREET (Cross Street: 3rd Avenue)
New York, NY 10022
Don't go to Mr Chow unless you want to get ripped.
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
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).
Chin Chin...Grand Marnier Shrimp...yum. They also have a little known Peking Duck special that is only $34 a person.
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).
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).
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?
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.