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Good food around 42nd and 2nd ave-Dinner and breakfast.

I'm looking for good food around 42nd and 2nd Ave. Not italian, and not sushi (I love it, but the person I'm traveling with is not into it).

Since we're doing something fairly expensive another night, we're looking for a place that costs no more than around $50 per person. This can include wine or not. We would prefer a place that is open later, on Thursday nights as we are arriving for dinner probably around 1130 or so.

Does a decent place like this in this area even exist?

Also, I'm looking for places to have breakfast in the same area. I like eggs and bacon just a much as anything fancy, so diner-type places are good. I am an early riser, so breakfast will likely be no later than 9am, and I am looking for places with earlier hours. I also want somewhere with a decent cup of coffee; strong but NOT Starbucks.

Thanks and you've all been incredibly helpful thus far.

Lastly, I have read with interest about the Grand Central Oyster bar. I would like to try their oysters rockefeller. Are they worth a visit, and is their other food decent enough that a non-oyster-afficionado can find something good?

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  1. Cibo is great for dinner. It is on the NW corner of 41st St & 2nd Ave.and serves American cuisine and will easily be under $50 per person.

    1. While I agree that Cibo is a very good choice, unfortunately, they only serve until 10 p.m.

      Despite the fact that people think of NYC as the "city that never sleeps," in many neighborhoods, it can be difficult to find a restaurant that serves late into the night.

      One place that comes to mind that's not too far from where you are staying is Ethos, on 3rd, b/t 33rd & 34th Sts. It's a taverna-style Greek restaurant with excellent food. I'm pretty sure they stay open until midnight, but it's always best to call and check before heading over there.


      Sarge's Deli, on 3rd, b/t 36h & 37th Sts., is open 24/7. The menu is vast, and the food is good. In addition to late night dining, you might consider it for breakfast. I don't drink coffee, so I can't tell you how good or bad it is there -- or anywhere, for that matter.


      Another good spot for breakfast is Penelope, on the corner of Lex & 30th. They open at 8 a.m.


      If you'd like to go a bit more upscale for breakfast, there's the Cafe at Country, in the Carlton Hotel, on the corner of Madison & 29th. They start serving at 7 a.m. Btw, since it's in a hotel, it's possible the Cafe may serve dinner late. You could call and ask. (Note: The more formal, upscale restaurant in the hotel is Country.



      I have not been to the GC Oyster Bar. I don't eat oysters, and I've never considered going there for their other food because most of what I've heard about it has been negative.

      Edited to add: Heading a bit north, I think Montparnasse, a French bistro on 51st St., b/t 2nd & 3rd Avs., serves until midnight. Good food and nice atmospherics.


      1. The Oyster Bar is a beautiful place to eat oysters, many kinds.

        1. my oyster bar late-lunch standard order is a half dozen oysters, two of each type, a bowl of manhattan chowder and usually a hoppy draft beer.

          whoever suggested ETHOS, great call. thats a standby for greek. costwise, a whole grilled fish can be an expensive order, but here they are not looking to rip you off.

          for coffee oren's roast is in grand central. plenty of food options down there.

          1 Reply
          1. re: mrnyc

            Ethos was my suggestion. They do a superb job grilling the whole fish, and I've found that the cost is not outrageous. My husband and I usually get one fish that's large enough for two people to share. Plus, it comes with very generous portions of roasted lemon potatoes and green beans. That said, the o.p. will be dining very late, so by that time, there may not be much, if any, whole fish left. No problem, though, because there are lots of very tasty dishes on the menu.

          2. Thanks for all the suggestions. Ethos may be worth going to on one of our other evenings, even if we can't get to it on the late night. I think a whole fish sounds outstanding.

            I'm also interested in Montparnasse. It's unfortunate that we'll only be in NYC this time for 3 nights- so many great places to eat!

            1. I really enjoy Blue Smoke, a restaurant specializing in BBQ and they're open until 1AM.

              They're located on 27th street and between Park and Lexington so its a very manageable walk. You get a Danny Meyer dining experience that is pretty easy on the wallet as well as being able to listen to some live jazz if you're interested.

              3 Replies
              1. re: jza1218

                Via Blue Smoke's website: Open until 1 a.m. on Thurs., Fri. & Sat. Other days, they close at 11 p.m.

                1. re: RGR

                  I know, but he was asking for Thursday night

                  1. re: jza1218

                    Agreed. But there could be others reading this thread who might be thinking of going there very late another night when they are not open until 1 a.m.

              2. Our experience has been that the Oyster Bar is super for "raw" oysters on the half shell. They are cold, briny, fresh and opened properly and promptly. The selection is usually extensive and varied. Their cooked selections are mediocre at best.
                Thanks to others for Ethos recommendation. It fits in nicely with or next visit.

                1 Reply
                1. re: murf

                  I agree with the Oyster Bar for raw oysters, and their dishes can indeed be hits and misses. I did enjoy the oyster pan roast, and if they have any specials like shad roes, you should also order.

                  It is not a good place to order lobsters in my experience.

                2. Breakfast - Townhouse (Diner/Coffee Shop) E/S of 2nd between 38th and 39th

                  best in the area

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: vegas

                    I agree wtih Townhouse. They have great coffee!
                    Also, check out Aquamarine (2nd between 38th and 39th) and the bar at the Capital Grille (42nd between Lex and 3rd)

                  2. I like Cipriani Specialita for an early breakfast....42nd, just east of Lexington - down a few steps. This is the breakfast/lunch/take-out sister of Cipriani's. They make a really special oatmeal (full of cream and sugar...mmmmm), and they pull a fine cappucino (make sure to tell them you're staying, so they don't put it in paper). Bring the paper, pull up a stool at the window and chill.....

                    They have nice pastry...some decent egg dishes, but the latter are pre-made and sometimes sit too long...ask.

                    1. I work in the area and I have a few ideas.

                      Euro Diner - 3rd Ave & 36th St (Breakfast & Dinner)
                      Hudson Place - 3rd Ave & 38th St. (Dinner) - Open to 11:00 PM
                      Jackson Hole - 3rd Ave & 35th (Breakfast & Dinner) - Open to 1:00 AM
                      Bloom's Delicatessen - Lexington Ave & 40th St (Breakfast & Dinner) - Open to 10:00 PM
                      Scotty's - Lexington Ave btw 39th & 40th (Breakfast & Dinner) - Open 24hrs

                      1. There's Comfort Diner on 45th between 2nd and 3rd. For dinner, there's Aburyia Kinnosuke across the street. While they do serve sushi and sashimi there, they have a ton of other foods you'd be into liked grilled meats, etc.