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5 midwest moms take manhattan

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We will in NYC next week. Most of us are from metropolitan areas but now living in a little town in michigan. There are 1-2 good restaurants but how often can you keep doing the same thing? We suffer from Severe Dining Deficiency. We are without children for the trip. We are looking for the quintessential New York dining experience. We would like excellent food, ethnic or quirky is fine. It does not have to be fancy, just fabulous and memorable (in a good way). We are looking for a good wine list and some fun drinks. We are kidfree and would prefer not to go into a restaurant that we would normally take them to - no children's menu please. Small, dark, loud, pristine, austere, late night....it's all good. No dining before 9p but small meals and drinks the whole day till dinner. Also, a great brunch place for Sunday. We will travel to the edges of the manhattan to get the best of the best, be it greasy pizza, the best falafel stand or fine cuisine in a swanky mahogany lined bar. We are leaving this week so anything requiring longterm reservations is out. No foams or emulsions needed on the menus. Maybe some dim sum? Oh, and the name of really good Jewish bakery for mandelbrat. I will be there for the week but the majority will be coming in Mon-Wed. Thanks for your help.

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  1. You might want to read throught this thread to get some ideas...

    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/375894

    1. Any restaurants better for seating 6 people for a comfortable long meal. Monday will be my big 40 so it would be nice to somewhere special. Thanks for the link to the other thread, the whole site in general is very helpful. Any restaurants that we would have more luck getting in to on an monday night that we couldn't get into fri-sat night. Is there any sort of "dining trifecta" - appetizers one place, dinner another, dessert another?

      1 Reply
      1. re: rmcdowell

        You won't have a problem on Monday night with most restaurants, except for the ultra trendy, and it doesn't sound like you really want that. People on this board might, I think, be of divided opinion on Ouest, but I love it very much. There are beautiful leather banquettes that seat six, the waiters never hurry you, the food is excellent (try not to fill up on bread before your food comes, tho it's so, so good). I would call ahead for a reservation if you choose to dine here Fri/Sat night, though I've never had a problem. I do dine late, generally.

        If you do the trifecta, make the wd-50 dessert menu one of your stops. Other Hounds know the lower east side better than I do, so hopefully one of the more knowledgeable ones can chime in about other appetizer and dinner options in the area.

        As for brunch--my favorites in Manhattan are Blue Ribbon Bakery (there WILL be a line, inevitably; still a no reservations policy, I think), Neptune Room, and Prune. Jane is also pleasant if the other three don't work for you.

        Hope you enjoy your time here. =)

      2. If you want small dishes to last you the day sounds like you want tapas. The best place I know of to get really good spanish tapas is Tia Pol. Very good food, they serve brunch lunch and dinner, although if you're going for dinner expect a wait, it's not a big restaurant. Do a search for it on here, or on google or wherever, you're sure to find plenty of great reviews.

        1 Reply
        1. re: hungry_fox

          Ooh yeah, tia pol is great. You can try a bunch of stuff too.

        2. Go to Prune for Sunday brunch. It's my absolute favorite brunch spot in Manhattan. They are serving lunch now, too, which is phenomenal. http://www.prunerestaurant.com/

          For dim sum, Chinatown Brasserie on Lafayette is both festive and delicious.

          1 Reply
          1. re: beck

            You'll be waiting an awfully long time to get a table for 6 at Prune for brunch. Better for lunch on a weekday. The weather is getting nicer and the doors will be open. Order the burger.

          2. Sunday "brunch" if you can manage to get up early (it gets very crowded after 10:30), quintessential NYC experience at Barney Greengrass - 86th and Amsterdam, have the eggs and nova with a garlic bialy with vegetable cream cheese. Fantastic. We also like Dim Sum Go Go for dim sum and of course, Joe's Shanghai for soup dumplings. Recently ate at Picholine and it is great. Also would recommend Artisinal, the stinky cheese restaurant - delicious!

            1. My favorite "never miss" restaurant for dinner is "Balthazar"...Must call ASAP for reservations..

              1. I highly recommend Five Points for brunch. If you want the best falafel, go to Azuri Cafe on 51st between 9th and 10th Ave. (closer to 10th). Hole in the wall place with a grumpy owner, but so, so good. The grumpy owner is part of the NYC experience!

                1. Momofuku Ssam. Might be hard for 6, but they do have a couple tables. The food is amazing, they're open late, and it's definitely worth a trip.

                  1. Gotta hit the Burger Joint in the Le Parker Meridien Hotel!

                    Also I'm really partial to going to this place called Flor De Mayo on 83rd and Amsterdam. It's a Spanish/Chinese restaurant that just rocks my socks off whenever I go there.

                    1. Regarding brunch - DO NOT GO TO PRUNE. It is a hassle and it will be a long wait and it is NOT comfortable for a large group. Defintely take the suggestion to go for (an excellent) weekday lunch. If you like to vintage shop you can then head to LES to browse. I would second 5 points for brunch. Very good and they take ressies. Balthazar is excellent for brunch too. Or Barmarche in Nolita and then shop for afternoon. Pastis for lunch is fun because it is always bussing. Last time I was there I sat next to Pedro Almodovar. Fancy dinner - Eleven Madison Park. So good. Cheap pasta - Da Andrea in West Village, Bianca in EV, Cacio E Pepe in EV. For pizza I like Arturos in SOHO, Apizz in LES. Have fun.