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Long lunch, Madison/5th btw. 35-40th?

I am meeting a friend from out of town who has meetings in that area and will
be heading to Penn Station after lunch. I am looking for excellent food primarily,
and a place that is comfortable/quiet enough to linger. And of course, CLEAN!
Not worried about price. Neither of us eat meat but both eat fish (cooked)
and everything else. Any suggestions? KayMae

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  1. the modern
    alto, 53rd and 5th

    for unparalleled fish, le bernadin has a lunch tasting for $60, or a "city harvest" menu for $40, the profits of which benefit the city harvest charity.

    1 Reply
    1. re: winebitch

      between 35th and 40th....

      perhaps you read it incorrectly

    2. I would suggest Keens, on 36th St., b/t 5th & 6th Avs. Yes, I know it's a steakhouse, but there is fish on the menu. I love their shrimp cocktail, and the last time we were there, one person at our table who ordered fish said it was excellent. Furthermore, the wonderful old NY ambiance is unbeatable. Keens stays open all afternoon, so you don't have to worry about being rushed out.


      1. thanks for the suggestion, but since neither of us have eaten meat for about
        30 years the smell of a steakhouse would be daunting, to say the least....

        1. For lunch in that area, I really enjoy Koi, at 40 W. 40th in the Bryant Park Hotel. Plenty of fish (both cooked and raw) prepared well.

          1. What about the Cafe at Country on Madison in the high 30s? It has a nice ambiance and I'm sure they would have no problem with you lingering on a weekday afternoon. Country, the more formal restaurant upstairs, may be serve lunch as well, but I have not had the opportunity to dine there.

            1. I was seriously considering the cafe (website indicates the restaurant only
              serves dinner) but I have read a lot of mixed reviews. Has anyone had lunch
              in Country's cafe recently.... during 2007? How was it? and thanks....

              1 Reply
              1. re: KayMae

                Cafe at Country is not in the high 30's. It's on the corner of 29th & Madison, in the Carlton Hotel. Lunch is served there. If you look carefully at the website, you will see that the Cafe's menu is the same at lunch, throughout the afternoon, and into the dinner service. (It says, "all day lunch & dinner")


                We've had dinner there twice. The food is delicious. However, a caveat. We had major problems during the second dinner with food served not at the proper temperature, which we sent back. Service the first time was first-rate; the second time, we had a server who didn't do her job properly. The noise level can be insanely high in the evening when the place is packed, particularly around the bar, which dominates the room. But I'm guessing that at lunch and during the afternoon, this may not be a problem.

                Note: Country, the upscale restaurant upstairs, does not serve lunch.

              2. esca would be my selection. the freshest fish served simply. the wine selection is exemplary. it's on 43 st. and 9th.
                here's a link: http://www.esca-nyc.com/

                1. Thanks RGR and Steve. Due to logistics/timing, we will probably
                  go to Country, but that Esca menu is fabulous!! I am going to make a point
                  of getting there soon; I am Italian American and I love the wine list too.

                  3 Replies
                      1. re: RGR

                        mercy. i sense a challenge here.

                  1. Been to Country and it was ok, but if you are willing to venture south to 28th street, I would go to Urena for lunch (28th Bet Madison and Park). Food is wonderful.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: berna

                      berna, Great suggestion! As we've agreed on other threads, the food Alex Urena is cooking at his eponymous restaurant is superb! And the atmospherics are comfortable and very conversation-friendly. They serve lunch until 2:30. So, even though they don't stay open all afternoon as the Cafe at Country does, KayMae and her friend can probably linger for a little while.