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Good restaurants in the Financial District...

I'll be up in NYC for training in early January staying at the Holiday Inn in the Financial District, near Wall St. It's only my 2nd time visiting and was wondering if anyone can recommend some good restaurants that should be on my list. Lunch will be provided to me, so I need some good dinner spots. I'll be solo for most of my trip, but I'm not opposed to being seen eating alone :) My wife will be joining me later in the week and I think we'll hit up 11 Madison then, but is there anywhere around that part of town that is worth visiting? Thanks.

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  1. Here are 3 suggestions that have a little bit of New York history to them:

    Fraunces Tavern
    Bobby Van's
    Battery Gardens

    I've eaten at the first two and had great experiences. Both would certainly be fine for solo dining either at a table or at the bar.

    I've heard some great things about Battery Gardens, but haven't been there, so maybe some other posters could chime in.

    Good luck!

    1. You might want to do a search of this site. There have been alot of recent threads on this topic. You can also sort by neighborhood, check out the menus/prices on menupages.com. Unfortunately, FiDi is not known for great food (good food in FiDi is a bit of an oxymoron). By the way, in NYC there are always a lot of solo diners and many restaurants serve dinner at the bar if you prefer not to sit at a table.

      I'd suggest you walk over to TriBeCa, to Chinatown or head to the LES/EV. We almost always leave this area for dinner. Outside the Seaport/tourist area there are a few okay places near Peck Slip/Front. Barbarini (more of a lunch/to go place) or Acqua are okay for a decent, simple light Italian dinner. Bridge is satisfying American, has a lot of history. All of these places are comfortable for dining alone, though Barbarini doesn't have a bar to dine at. If you want upscale there's Ancora (Italian), MJ, Bobby Van's (one dining room is in an old bank vault). I have not been to Ancora. None of these places are destination places.

      Degustation (EV) and Falai (LES) you could dine at the bar (or a table) for some more memorable food.

      1. Mark Joseph for steak
        Il Brigante for casual homey Italian
        Suteishi for sushi

        1 Reply
        1. re: nancyl126

          Mark Joseph is an upscale steakhouse, lots of suits. I don't eat steak so I defer to nancyl126. I have found Il Brigante to be inconsistent. It's probably better now that they have professional servers. My fish was disappointing and overpriced (to be fair that was when they first opened). Stick with the pizza and pasta. I like Acqua (was Quartino), Barbarini and Buon 'Amici (pricier than Acqua) better than Il Brigante. Please note one of my neighbors went to Buon 'Amici recently and said it wasn't as good. I hope it was just an off night.

          We have been to SUteiShi several times. Their name never comes up on top sushi places on this Board so if you are a sushi aficiniado, skip it. I am a sushi novice. I like their barbecue eel, very fresh when I've gone. They have cooked dishes including a miso grilled eggplant that is quite nice. They have a small bar which is nice if you are dining alone. Victor and Renee are lovely people and will make you feel welcome and comfortable.

          sbouldin, almost forgot, you have all the places on Stone Street. It's too touristy for me and I'm not a fan of Adrienne's (service issues), but it might work for you.

        2. I work in the Financial District and must say we have surprisingly few outstanding choices for good restaurants. While there's plenty of decent take-out, for those of us who eat lunch at our desks, there is a dearth of really fine restaurants. I've been to Fraunces Tavern many times in the 20 years I've worked downtown, but seldom because it was my choice.
          The food is only passable...it is really a historic curiosity. I like Roy's, but there are Roy's in other cities, so it is not unique to NYC. In any case, Roy's serves what might be called Pacific Rim cuisine. Adrienne's Pizza Bar is really a good choice: the pizzas are well-prepared, thin crust and crispy. Salads and pastas acceptable.
          I'm not a steak eater, so I can't comment on Bobby Van's. Pre-9/11, there were a few excellent Japanese places, frequented by Japanese workers in lower Manhattan.
          Now, sadly, they seem to have disappeared. You should try Alfanoose for the best falafel in NY, along with other fine middle-eastern specialties. Save room for a few sweets at the conclusion of your meal.

          5 Replies
          1. re: famdoc

            famdoc, is Alfanoose open for dinner? OP has lunch provided.

            Just curious, have you encountered any service issues at Adrienne's?

            1. re: financialdistrictresident

              I've been to Alfanoose at 6 PM...I don't know how much later it's open.
              I don't expect four-star service at Adrienne's, so I'm not disappointed.

              1. re: famdoc

                thanks, famdoc. I guess I should try eating at Adrienne's again to see if the service has gotten better. All the times I have attempted delivery I have been told 2 hours or they don't answer the phone. There are so many restaurants in NYC why settle?

                1. re: financialdistrictresident

                  When you call Adrienne's, they'll tell you how long it will be for pizza delivery.
                  I had a pie last week delivered in 20 minutes. It even still had some crisp to it.
                  In general, I don't go for delivered pizza, but this was good enough.
                  I've also had a few meals, both eat in and delivered, from the Scandinavian joint on Stone St. Actually quite good, although a bit pricey.
                  I didn't intend to dissuade the visitor from trying Roy's. I think it is one of the finer downtown restaurants...just not a unique experience.

                  1. re: famdoc

                    famdoc, 20 minutes is great (it's always been 2 hours for me). I'm glad your experiences have been better than mine :) Agree, Roy's is one of the better choices in FiDi. I have only been once for lunch and it was very good.

          2. The Bridge Cafe is wonderful & historic...great American fare in a charming and warm atmosphere. One of the best steaks I've had in town.

            1 Reply
            1. re: LeahBaila

              Hard to believe I just discovered Bridge's satisfying, American food because I've lived here so long. sbouldin, I posted a review after our recent dinner at Bridge you might want to do a search of this site (apologies, I have to learn to post the link).

              LeahBaila, your post just made me think of The Harrison (American) in TriBeCa.

            2. A few suggestions if you want to walk over to TriBeCa (walk West for better food):

              *Duane Park Cafe (American - local, neighborhood place we just discovered, $35 prix fixe dinner)
              *The Harrison (American)
              *Gigino (Italian)
              *Salaam Bombay (Indian)

              I have not been to Bouley Upstairs but see it suggested on this board. We will probably try Fresh next time we head to TriBeCa for dinner. I defer to hounds more familiar with TriBeCa for additional suggestions.

              1. I had dinner at The Paris last night and it reminded me of a few pub dinner possibilities (food okay to good, not great):

                1. Ryan MacGuire's on Cliff off off Fulton (local neighborhood place)
                2. Meade's (same owners as Jeremy's) on Water and Peck Slip
                3. The Paris on South Street and Peck Slip (an old historic place, popular with locals)

                1. Second Ryan McGuire's. You might also try Trinity Place -- it has a great atmosphere, being located in an old bank vault. Very comfortable, decent food.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: sea97horse

                    Where is Trinity Place? Is it near Suspenders (another decent pubby type place)?

                    1. re: financialdistrictresident

                      It's on Liberty, just east of Trinity Place the Street -- across from that little park with the falafel vendors and the statue of a commuter. It's easy to miss, as there's no major sign. If you go, let us know what you think!

                      1. re: sea97horse

                        and the phone is 212.964.0939

                        1. re: sea97horse

                          Thanks, sea97horse. I'll have to check it out next time I'm on the West side and as always I'll report back on my experience.

                          1. re: financialdistrictresident

                            sea97horse, by the way Trinity Place is participating in Downtown for Dinner 2007 this week @ $25.