Hi all........Thanks in advance for your valuable information.I will be staying in Time Square for 3 days and nights in April.I need 3 great dinner spots with money being no problem.I have kids 11 and 13 that will be with us but there are very well behaved.Italian is a must.
Your generalization is, in my view, totally untrue. The Times Square/Theater District area has many restaurants with very good to excellent food. Will you find tourists in them? Of course! But that doesn't make them touristy, any more than tourists who dine at 4-star restaurants like Daniel or Per Se make them touristy. So, while I do advocate that visitors to NYC experience restaurants in other neighborhoods, they can dine well in the Times Square area.
Times Square usually gets expanded to Theatre District/Hell's Kitchen/Sixth Ave/Time Warner Center in discussions like these, but if staying in Times Square with kids, walking distance is generally limited to Times Square proper, in which there is really not much to smile at. That was my point, if perhaps imperfectly stated.
But boo on me, I should have at least offered John's Pizza on 44th (btw 7th and 8th). Good pizza, great atmosphere and family joint.
Thanks to Chowhound suggestions I tried Scarlatto ( 250 W. 47th St) last Sunday . While it won't make the list of great (or expensive) Italian restaurants-I thought the quality and freshness of the food was very good. Could not believe the exceptionally moderate prices (which is not a consideration in your question).
Started out the meal with slices of rustic bread and foccacia served with white bean spread. I had the pumpkin ravioli sauteed in sage butter with crisp slices of asparagus. The dessert selection was varied-went beyond typical Italian sweets. I had the molten chocolate cake which was intensely chocolate.
The service was attentive. The room was warm and inviting- bare wood floors, brick walls, fireplace, candlelit tables. Website: http://www.scarlattonyc.com/.
You can also do a search on menupages.com or opentable.com and limit by location, cuisine, and price. Hope this suggestion helps a bit....
I like Roberto Passon for italian. Food is very good, service is a little spacey and tables are somewhat cramped. If possible do not go during pre-theater rush.
Your talking about my neighborhood, so let me tell you a few of the places we like. It is true that most restaurants are touristy, but there ARE good places to eat here. Couple of ideas. Higher end you have DB bistro moderne, I never had the famous fois gras hamburger but did have an excellent meal there. On the other side of the Square is ESCA, an excellent italian seafood restaurant though I think the salmon with figs dish is a bit overrated, best to go with somehting else. Another option is Taboon on tenth, a very nice middle eaternr restaurant with aweesome breads, appetizers and meats. If you want less formal, really good food. Get onto ninth ave from 38th or so north. Tony Lukes has incredible sandwiches in a bar atmosphere. Grand Sichuan has authentic food and great prices. Just a bit uptown try Divine Bar West (do NOT go to divine bar east-no liquor license) for really inspired small plates, incredicble cocktails and excellent beer and wine lists and a young, "NYC" vibe. Touristy but also worth a quick drink is the revlving restaurant on the top of the Marriot MArquis. Go for a before dinner drink as at some point they cstart charging a large cover. Any of the little places on ninth are good for lunch, but also check out the oyster bar at grand central for delicious americana (starting to move out of TS, sorry). Lots to eat here, just our chefs generally lack the big names like downtown.
Walk up to the Time Warner building and grab a bite at Bouchon Bakery (more of a lunch/sweet spot)...nice view of central park in a civilized atmosphere without breaking the bank. It's a good place to head in this cold weather for shopping too....J Crew, Sephora, Williams Sonoma plus you can take a trip to Whole Foods like all of the other tourists do on the weekends....you can see what we go through and pay to get quality groceries in NY.
As for Italian food try Hearth, Babbo or Beppe.
Someplace like Asia de Cuba, Buddakan or Tao might be good with the kids. A good way to view NYC nightlife while eating.
Blue Fin which is in Times Square has good, not great, seafood at reasonable prices.
Make sure you go to Essa Bagel one day!!!
One last recommendation with the kids would be PJ Clarkes for burgers!
Enjoy your stay in NY !!