Chicagoans in for the ING Marathon - Suggestions Please
Hello fellow Chowhounds,
My husband & I will be coming to NYC the first weekend in November for the ING Marathon. While my husband will be the only one running, we both plan to engage in a lot of dining, drinking (after the race, of course), and general good fun. I have only been to NYC once (ate at Babbo-was great), so any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Also, I've done some research and would appreciate comments on my ideas as well -- what's overrated, what's great, etc.
We will be heading over to the Javits Convention Center early evening to hit the expo. After that, I'm interested in just about anything for dinner -- preferably more on the casual side, rather than upscale. Pegu Club or Employees Only for dinner/drinks? Alta for small plates?
Breakfast -- Ess-A-Bagel or Via Quadronno, perhaps?
Lunch -- Cafe Azuri, Di Fara Pizza?
Dinner -- No suggestions necessary. We have reservations at Lupa. Marathoners need their pasta...
Lunch -- Because I expect my husband to be exhausted & starving, I would prefer something near the finish line (Central Park South) or near our hotel, which is closeby in Midtown.
Dinner -- I need help. I want something nice, with outstanding food. I've been looking at other posts and come up with the following: Blue Hill, Eleven Madison Park, The Modern, AOC Bedford, Pastis, August. I'm open to others...
Alas, we must then return to Chicago. Thanks in advance.
Okay...my two cents, for what it's worth...
I've heard great things about Pegu and Employee's Only. If you're headed to the West Village area, I like Diablo a lot. Mexican food...cool space. West 10th between Bleeker and West 4th. That's just generally a good area for food and bars. Lots of fun.
Breakfast is breakfast pretty much, but I think, but Via Quadronno is a good pick from the atmosphere perspective. A little further up the westside is Sarabeth's which is also a good option (for brunch, anyway.) It's on Amsterdam between 80th and 81st, near the Natural History Museum. Good food, good prices, nice room.
Di Fara's is in Brooklyn and Azuri Cafe is on the Westside. Depends on where you're going to be. If you're looking for good pizza, and are staying in Manhattan, give Lombardi's a try. You can also check this board for opinions (and there are plenty) as to where to find the best slice in the city.
I'm not sure where the finish line is exactly, but Serafina's can be a nice and relaxing spot. Pretty casual and not too stuffy. 55th and Broadway. There is also a Sarabeth's near there as well...CPS between 5th and 6th, if you don't go to the one near the museum on Saturday morning.
As far as dinner goes, I'd definitely skip Pastis. It's way too crowded (although it will be Sunday) and not really that good. If you want a great dinner experience, go to Eleven Madison. I can't say enough about it. The food is great, as is the service. It will make you feel special, which anyone deserves after running a marathon. I can't even comprehend that.
I've also heard Blue Hill is fantastic...especially their lettuce soup. Very fresh food...top notch.
Anyway, I hope this helps. Best of luck to your husband.