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30th b'day - Tao or Kittichai?

  • j

I'm having my 30th birthday dinner in a few weeks. It will be a party of six (one vegan, two pescatarian diners who eat seafood, dairy, and veggies [no poultry/beef/pork], and three "standard" eaters).

I have reservations at both Tao and Kittichai but have been to neither.

Which would you recommend? Or is there another restaurant that you fancy? I'm looking for Asian cuisine (I'm a particular fan of spicy Asian cuisine) because I feel that it's easiest to accomodate the various dietary restrictions. I want a place that feels "special" as I only turn 30 once!


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  1. I don't love Kittichai. I think it's expensive for what it is. I am a big fan of Tao though. The food is good there and fun for a bday dinner. I also surprisingly like Buddhakan. I say that because I love the one in Philly and didn't expect the hype to be lived up to in NY but the food is solid and the space is very unique. And, it's fun to share the dishes.

    1 Reply
    1. re: nyccookie

      Thanks -- Buddakan was also on my radar, but they could only accomodate a party of 6 at 5:30 or 10:30, neither of which aren't idea times. :)

    2. I think Tao is a really fun choice. I've been there a bunch of times with a bunch of different groups of people. The food is good and the atmosphere is very cool. I'd go with Tao hands down.

      1 Reply
      1. re: wcgirl

        Great! Two votes for Tao...

      2. Never been to Kittichai, but found Tao to be nothing special at all. Go to MEGU downtown!!!!

        1 Reply
        1. re: bac528

          I think Megu might be out of our price range -- Tao is a bit less expensive, yes?

        2. You can really determine the price by how you order!! You must try it...no comparison to Tao....different league altogether!!! You won't be sorry.

          1. Would anyone else second Megu over Tao, especially considering the dietary restrictions of my group?

            1. If you eat at Megu, you'd never waste your time going back to Tao. A world of difference. Megu is for those who know good food and Tao is for those who don't care!!

              1. Tao is a theme park. Kittichai is really good food. Like, REALLY good food. And to top it off? Tao is kinda over...if you were going for scene-y, Spice Market?

                1. If you are for Asian Spicy...consider going to Devi...the food is good, the space is nice and festive enough (request a table in the ground floor). Both Tao and Kittichai were made more for the scene and don't really focus much on good food together with the other mega Asian fusiony places that recently opened. Tabla maybe another good option as the space is also good and there are a lot of options for the veggies and the bar area serves great fun cocktails that can start the ball rolling even before dinner...happy birthday!

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: nyufoodie

                    I've got reservations at Tao, Kittichai, and Devi now -- and after scouring these boards, I'm leaning towards Devi, actually. Thank you!

                    1. re: jbd

                      I'm not veg but, the manchurian cauliflower and crispy okra sides in Devi are really good. For dessert, I highly recommend the Mango Mousse. Happy 30th!

                  2. I was a bit disappointed in Tao. Felt like we spent a lot and was extremely underwhelmed by the food - we definitely wont go back. There's many other fusion places that offer better quality IMO.

                    1. I went to Tao for a business dinner. Food was okay, overpriced. Place was noisy. They do have the giant Buddha. . .Fun if people are into a scene. Would not be my choice for a 30th B-Day. Agree with NYUfoodie that Tabla might be a good choice. Danny Meyer's restaurants (Gramercy Tavern, Union Square, Tabla, etc.) generally have delicious food, quality service and are consistent. They may not be for those chasing the latest trend, but they have staying power.