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Long Lunch - Not returning to the office.

jmax Sep 27, 2007 06:14 AM

Need a spot to meet an old friend from out of town for lunch. I won't be returning to the office - so it can be pretty leisurely. She has never eaten at Jean-Georges - My thought is to go there, but I was thinking some place more casual. Otto comes to mind - sit at the bar - have a bunch of little plates and lots of wine. My friend is a chef in LA - so I guess good food is a priority. Price and location - not that important. Thanks.

  1. l
    Lucia Sep 27, 2007 07:52 AM

    Perry St. is the more casual sister restaurant to J-G. Maybe it would be a nice compromise? Service/room are still somewhat formal, but the menu is designed in small courses w/o a distinction between apps and entrees, so you could design your own tasting/grazing experience. Casa Mono is a good suggestion. Tia Pol is also open for lunch.

    1. j
      jmax Sep 27, 2007 07:05 AM

      I've also heard lunch at Maze is nice and a pretty decent value - three courses at 35 bucks from a choice of 6 in each category.

      1. s
        stevel Sep 27, 2007 06:38 AM

        You could also go to L'atelier(Robuchon) and sit at the counter. You can order the small dishes and get as little or as much as you want.

        1. c
          chow_gal Sep 27, 2007 06:27 AM

          These are all great suggestions. I am so jealous. What is better than a long, delicious, boozy lunch on a weekday with a dear friend?!

          Is Lupa open for lunch?

          1. f
            Foodboy Sep 27, 2007 06:19 AM

            Balthazar is serene, low key and leisurely in the late afternoon for lunch. You can hang out there for 3 hours if you wish - eat plenty of terrific food and drink lots of great wine. What could be better?

            1. JungMann Sep 27, 2007 06:18 AM

              Jean-Georges is certainly a classic and a prime spot for a leisurely and refined lunch. Your chef friend might also appreciate the 5-course lunch at Eleven Madison Park. While a little less stuffy than Jean-Georges, it still offers fantastic food and with the bonus of being in a prime downtown location in proximity to wine bars, lounges and more.

              1. MMRuth Sep 27, 2007 06:17 AM

                What about Casa Mono - might be a nice place to linger on a Friday afternoon.

                5 Replies
                1. re: MMRuth
                  RGR Sep 27, 2007 08:01 AM

                  While I like the food at Casa Mono, the thing I don't like about the place is the exceedingly cramped seating. While it does tend to be less busy in the afternoon, I still wouldn't choose it when I want to linger *comfortably*.

                  1. re: RGR
                    MMRuth Sep 27, 2007 08:13 AM

                    I know it's cramped - but I have to say that we've comfortably lingered for hours - maybe it's that great wine!

                    1. re: MMRuth
                      RGR Sep 27, 2007 08:21 AM

                      I don't drink, so maybe the wine helps. For lingering, I prefer nicely-spaced tables and more cushy seating. :-)

                      1. re: RGR
                        MMRuth Sep 27, 2007 08:46 AM

                        I do see the appeal of that and agree that Casa Mono provides neither! For some reason though, it's still one of our favorites for a leisurely weekend lunch. We've got to try Fleur de Sel and Toqueville though - I know I've been saying that for ages now!

                        1. re: MMRuth
                          RGR Sep 27, 2007 11:18 AM

                          Yes, you really should try them.

                          Fleur de Sel has long been one of our favorites. Chef de Cuisine Jose Chesa is a honey, and he's putting out some truly remarkable cuisine.

                          As for Tocqueville, in the old location, we used to go mostly for the prix-fixe lunch. (One time, Marvin Harmlish was sitting at a table to my right. He swooned over his tapioca dessert. lol) During the summer, we finally got around to having dinner in the new space. Beautifully done, very elegant, yet relaxed. And Chef Marco Moreira was really in top form, and the food we had was superb!

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