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Greek or Turkish for Bday Celebration?

I'm looking for a place for my birthday celebration dinner for around 10 people and I'm thinking perhaps Turkish, Greek, Middle Eastern (something of that nature). I have already been to: Turkish Kitchen, Barbounia, Ethos, Beyoglu, Azza, Thalassa, Sahara Grill, and Ali Baba. I'm looking for a new spot with perhaps a more festive vibe. Any help from the hounds? Thanks!

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  1. oh and I'm going to Periyali tonight so that's out as well.

    6 Replies
    1. re: foodie4life

      I've been to Periyali, and it was excellent, if a little too expensive for Greek food.

        1. re: foodie4life

          Frankly, it's good that you aren't paying because I thought the food at Periyali the one time we were there was just o.k. Certainly, not special enough to warrant prices that are much higher than other Greek restaurants, like Ethos, which have excellent food and more moderate prices.

          A couple of suggestions. Darna, on 2nd Av., b/t 34th & 35th Sts., is a Moroccan restaurant with delicious food and Rick's Cafe-type decor.


          Byblos, on 39th St., just east of 3rd Av., is a Lebanese restaurant that has been around for many years. We haven't been there in quite a long time, but the food was always good, and there was an upbeat vibe. On weekends, they have entertainment.


          1. re: RGR

            what is Rick's Cafe type decor? I'm not familiar...

            1. re: foodie4life

              On second thought, Darna looks fantastic. I will call tomorrow to book a table. Thanks RGR!

              1. re: foodie4life

                Hey, foodie4life, Glad to hear that you'll be booking Darna. I'm not the only Hound who has had good things to say about it. If you do a search, you might be able to find other comments.

                As regards my use of the "Rick's Cafe" description, that refers to the movie "Casablanca."

    2. Hi foodie4life

      So this time it is your own birthday! Congrats! I am not so familiar with Greek or Middle Eastern food, but Adam Platt just gave an excellent review to Anthos, which sounds like a good place for celebration. It looks a bit contemporary and even I want to try it out! I think some hounds did a thread on Anthos, so you may do a search on that. Here is a link for the Platt's review:

      Hopefully other hounds can give you more suggestions!

      Congratulation and Happy Birthday!

        1. Try Estiatorio Milos in Midtown West if you want to try upscale. Pricey will admit but the fish are excellent.You pick the fish and then they serve it up for you. It sort of has that expense account midtown feel you get with most restaurants in that area but it's really good and fresh. But for sure the bill get's high.

          1 Reply
          1. re: banjolinana

            Thanks to all. I will look into Anthos and Pylos. If Estiatorio Milos is pricey then I cannot really do it. We'll be a group of mid 20s ladies and I need to keep the pricing modest.

            I still have a few weeks on this but I wanted to get the ball rolling. May ditch the Greek idea all together and look into something else if I can't find anything fitting.

          2. I thought I saw somewhere that Gus's Place reopened in a new spot in the Village. I always liked the vibe and the food there, and the price was always reasonable.

            1. I had a wonderful meal at Persepolis on the UES last week - Persian food - it was really excellent - wanted to go back right away. Nice decor etc., though not particularly "festive". Excellent service.

              7 Replies
              1. re: MMRuth

                Do you remember what you had? I'd love some guidance....

                1. re: fauchon

                  Well, we were the guests of a friend and his Iranian girlfriend, so we let her order. But, as I recall, we had a trio of eggplant dishes and a plate with tabbouleh, hummus and a yogurt cucumber dish to start. Then a platter of assorted lamb - kebabs and also a ground lamb dish, fesanjan (sp? - which she said could have been better) and what I think was a beef stew like dish. She ordered plain rice and green rice, which was served to us each on a plate with half of each. For dessert, a delicious ice cream served on ice with a syrup (rose water?) on top. Had a nice Australian shiraz with it.

                  1. re: MMRuth

                    Thanks so much....we keep wanting to try it & now we will...thanks again

                    1. re: fauchon

                      I checked menu pages to see if I could identify some of the dishes further, but not there. Enjoy!

                      1. re: MMRuth

                        thanks for all of the new ideas, I'll look into them. What about Uncle Nick's?

                        1. re: foodie4life

                          Don't know anything about it, sorry.

                          1. re: foodie4life

                            Uncle Nicks, on 9th avenue, is a staple. The specialize in greek seafood but have all the basics. Their cheese flambe never ceases to thrill the people. They have an extensive tapas menu too. All the food is very good. In my opinion, the atmosphere/people are not very interesting but it remains super popular. 9th avenue offers a plethora of places to go before and after which is and advantage.

                            As alternatives, I think two other worthy suggestions are:

                            1. Turquaz (broadway on 100th street). The food is delicious and they have belly dancers! Very accommodating for groups.
                            2. Cafe Mogador (Moroccon). Humble hipster crowd in the east village. Again, delicious.

                2. Kefi on the UWS has been getting killer recos. Haven't been yet, but NYMag loved it. http://nymag.com/listings/restaurant/...

                  1. PS I think that Uncle Nicks has a wine bar/tapas bar next door that could be good for a group of mid-20s ladies. The original is not nearly festive or sceney enough.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: ronoc

                      Thought the food at the tapas bar next door was very mediocre. Would go with Darna if choosing between the two.

                    2. pasha on uws side is good(turkish)
                      kefi on uws-less fancy, but spot on great(greek)

                      1 Reply
                      1. it's not festive, but it is great: Uskador in UES. very good, but cozy.

                        1. Antique Garage in SoHo - there's a big table in the center where there's always some kind of celebration. It's a really pretty room, and sometimes live music. They open the garage door-wall in warm weather. Yummy Mediterranean-Turkish food, I love it there!