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Jan 10, 2008 07:23 AM

Pre-theater dining

I am usually on the outer-borough board as I live in Brooklyn.

I have theater tickets for a Saturday night in February and wanted a recommendation for dinner before. Want good food, not expensive, not rushed. Thanks.

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  1. Hell's Kitchen is my favorite pre-theater restaurant. But book early. Also a fan of Becco's allyoucaneat pasta extravaganza (and a true bargain)..

    1 Reply
    1. re: Will4Food

      I'll second the nod to Hell's Kitchen Restaurant - the food is consistently outstanding and the staff is super friendly.

    2. With literally hundreds of restaurants to choose from in the Theater District,it would be helpful to know your cuisine preferences and a per person budget for food since opinions can differ as to what "not expensive" means. That said...

      I am not a fan of Becco. The ayce pastas are mediocre, seating is sardine-tight, and the noise level is so hideously high that normal conversation impossible. Not exactly my idea of a comfortable, pleasant way to dine.

      Trattoria Trecolor, on 47th St., b/t B;way & 8th Av., is our favorite Italian in that area. Well-prepared and tasty homestyle cuisine. Friendly, efficient service. Attractive decor and comfortably-spaced tables. Moderate prices.


      West Bank Cafe, on 42nd St., b/t 9th & 10th Avs., serves excellent New American cuisine, service is friendly and capable, decor is pleasant, tables are nicely-spaced, and the noise level is conversation-friendly.

      Marseille, on the corner of 9th Av. & 44th St., is a bustling French/Mediterranean brasserie with excellent food, good service, and eye-catching decor. They offer a 3-course dinner prix-fixe for $35.

      Reservations are a must! I suggest 5:30 - 5:45 p.m., which will give you plenty of time for an unrushed, relaxing meal before strolling to your theater for an 8 p.m. curtain.

      Enjoy the show and Bon Appetit!

      1 Reply
      1. re: RGR

        I agree with RGR's suggestions - and I'm also not a fan of Becco - as well as Hell's Kitchen (recommended above). I'd also add Le Madeleine (French) on 43rd just west of 9th and Vice Versa (Italian) on west 51st.

      2. If you're willing to walk up to 9th Ave. and 50th St., you may like Nook. It's BYO and the food is solid. The mushroom cigar app is a must and the lamb is a good option among the mains. Avoid the Hungarian Goulash.

        1. Osteria Al Doge is a good value. other suggestions (but not all inexpensive):

          DB Bistro
          Brasserie 44
          Crave on 42nd

          1 Reply
          1. re: iforman2001

            Yes, dbBistro Moderne, 4-star chef Daniel Boulud's take on contemporary French bistro cuisine, is on the expensive side; however, they offer a pre-theater prix-fixe for, I believe, $45 -- an excellent value for cuisine of that high caliber.


          2. As I've mentioned on these boards before, Maria Pia is my go-to Italian pre-theater spot. You may want to make a reservation as it can get crowded before shows. The food is good, the prices are right and I've never felt rushed.

            Maria Pia
            319 West 51st Street, New York, NY 10019