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the east village rut.

so i've become spoiled. having lived and dined out almost every night in the east village, i'm beginning to get to the point where, when i'm trying to decide where to go for dinner, i'm at a loss.

i know this is ridiculous because it's the east village, a glut of gustatory options. but the same places are always mentioned on this website, i frequent many of them, and i'm beginning to wonder if i'm missing out on hidden gems.

i'm looking for something new to throw some spice into my routine, something that's downscale enough to have a casual dinner (<$15/entree). i live on 5th and Ave A, but i'm willing to wander to Nolita/LES/union square too. generally i tend toward the healthier and am a pescatarian, though i'm open to anything as long as it has options. I love Italian, Latin, Asian, Middle Eastern, and American Nouveau.

my highly frequented spots:

Caracas Arepa Bar
Awash
Caffe Emilia
Atlas Cafe
Snack Dragon
Max
Le Gamin
Cacio e Vino
Supper
Frank
Le Miu
Asashi
Bagel Zone
Boca Chica
Cafe Mogador
Cafe Orlin
St Alps Tea House
Cha An
Esperanto
Perbacco
Clinton St. Baking Co
Public
Moustache
Tsampa
Veselka
Lil Frankies
Yakitori Taisho
Kenka
Klong

ideas, anyone? some inspiration would be lovely.

thanks chowhounds!

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  1. I prefer Cacio e Pepe to Cacio e Vino
    Zerza
    Mermaid Inn
    Barbone (haven't been recently)

    1 Reply
    1. Pylos, Tai Thai, Perbacco, The Nolita House, Mercadito, Lavagna

      2 Replies
      1. re: LeahBaila

        Ugh, Nolita House? When this place opened they had pretensions of being a good restaurant but these days it seems they are serving food just because it is a requirement of their liquor license. I think they'd rather just be a bar.

        1. re: KTinNYC

          I had a delish Croque Madame at Nolita House the other day. Everything else is hit or miss... mostly miss.

      2. Tides, the teensy fish/seafood "shack" on the LES. In my view, a definitely must for a pescatarian.

        http://www.tidesseafood.com

        4 Replies
        1. re: RGR

          ooh, tides! i forgot i'd been meaning to try that place. any rec's for what to order? i also do love mermaid inn, but can't afford to go there on a regular basis. also - lucia- what type of food is barbone?

          1. re: emilia

            Barbone is Italian. There have been a few posts on this board with experience more recent than mine.
            I'm not sure that the menu prices at Tides are much different from the ones at Mermaid Inn. Tides has a very limited menu, so anything you order should be a good bet. I like the fried oysters and clams as a starter.

            1. re: emilia

              I liked their lobster roll with sweet potato chips, the fried clams and oysters were also awesome.

              1. re: emilia

                Re: Tides. I agree with kayonyc that the lobster roll is delicious. The chips that came with it when we were there a couple of weeks ago were yucca, not sweet potato. We also had excellent scallops.

            2. minca
              rai rai ken,
              Setagaya,
              el Maguey y la tuna,
              Casimir,
              Thai Tai and Kai kai,
              Itzocan cafe
              Chubo,
              Falai Panetteria
              uminoie,
              Le creperie,
              Jules,
              Otafuku,
              grand sichuan st marks

              1. barrio chino and (right across the street) little giant in LES
                Buenos Aires in EV

                1 Reply
                1. re: shisan

                  Barrio Chino is good but the margaritas can get pricey (especially grapefruit & jalapeno).