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Saturday night w/o a reservation

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I unexpectedly have childcare this weekend and would like to take my wife out for a (belated) anniversary celebration. Our big challenge is that we're planning for this Saturday and WITHOUT a reservation. We would like either "big name NYC" or "hot newcomer". To make it a bit easier, we can be there for first seating, like 5:30-6.

So any of those "no reservations" places we can hit up and try our luck in line?

Manhattan preferred; we're Brooklynites who want to "travel".
Money no object ( within reason..... Per Se prices no, Le Bernadin prices yes. )
No Asian ( we do that a lot ).
Romantic, atmosphere and decor would be preferred to loud and crazy.
ANYTHING will be considered.

THANKS, Chowers!

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  1. At that time of the evening, it's no problem at all. Check opentable.com. Among the best restaurants in the city which have openings are: Bouley, Cru, Danube, Eleven Madison Park, and The Modern. And there are eighty more.

    These will go, so pick one up asap.

    1. You can also walk into Babbo. They reserve 4-5 tables in the front for walk-ins.

      1. I second Babbo, Lupa also has tables available early.

        1. I'd second Bouley, Danube or Eleven Madison Park.