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Apr 1, 2008 09:40 AM

Dinner tonight on the 1, 2, or 3 train?

Apologies, all. I'm new to the city and I still have a really hard time with picking restaurants according to transportation/location. I've got a friend staying in the city and we're meeting up tonight for dinner. She's staying at the Four Points by Sheraton Manhattan Chelsea, 160 West 25th Street which is on this subway line.

Can you recommend somewhere easily accessible?

* not too spendy, casual okay (apps under $12 entrees under $20/$25)
* somewhere we can get a reservation (8pm) or walk-ins are easy
* good cocktails, fun atmosphere
* all cuisines, with maybe a nod towards small plates

In the past I've really enjoyed Casa Mono. I don't like Spotted Pig.
My dining companion really enjoyed Butter on her last visit.


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  1. If you enjoyed Casa Mono (I like the food but hate the sardine-like seating), how about Tia Pol? I haven't tried it, but it gets univeral praise from those who have. It's on 10th Av., b/t 22nd & 23rd Sts.

    1 Reply
    1. re: RGR

      It's a great place but walk-ins aren't easy around 8P. Maybe Bar Veloce?

    2. Alta, West 10th at 6th, close to 14th or Sheridan Square. Great small plates, spainish tapas plus, in a great fun space.

      1. The hotel isn't that close to the 2-3. Very close to the hotel you could do the Bread Bar at Tabla. Otherwise within walking distance, you can get to Sala 19 or Boqueria. Nearby is Flatiron Lounge for after-dinner drinks. If you're taking the train anyway, you might as well take the F to 14th and try out Alta which seems like a good balance between Butter and small plates.

        7 Replies
        1. re: JungMann

          If you're saying that the Bread Bar, on the corner of Madison & 25th, is close to the hotel, then another option is Pamplona, on 28th, b/t Madison & Park Av. S. (Note: The 28th St. stop on the 6 is on the corner.) I'm a fan of Chef/owner Alex Urena's Spanish-style cuisine, and every meal we've had there has been delicious. There's a menu of both tapas and regular plates. As walk-ins, they might be able to snag a table in the dining area. If not, they can probably grab seats at the bar or at one of the high-top tables.

          1. re: RGR

            I forgot Pamplona was in Flatiron. I haven't been, but have heard very good things about Chef UreƱa. Once again you have one-upped me!

            1. re: JungMann

              I hate to always chime in when RGR posts about Pamplona - though I'm going to anyway - but my experience, albeit for Sunday lunch in an empty restaurant, was that I was very disappointed by most of the food, with the exception of the hamburger and churros, which were delicious. I wanted to be excited by the food, but I just wasn't, and found the service a bit amateurish (new waiter maybe) and the room a bit dinged and dingy.

              The hostess was sweet when we were there - her father worked (works?) at La Grenouille (it was actually a waiter there who once recommended Urena/Pamplona to us), and we had a long chat about that place.

              1. re: JungMann

                That wasn't my intention, JungMann. In fact, if not for your post, I wouldn't have thought to suggest it. So, you did me a favor. :-)

                We adored the original Urena and were crestfallen when it closed. But we do enjoy Pamplona, and even though the menu is different and prices are more moderate, Alex continues to cook inventive, delicious food. However, to be fair, there are Hounds who do not share my enthusiasm for Pamplona. I hope you will go and decide for yourself, just as you did with Devi. :-)

                1. re: RGR

                  I was saying that more tongue in cheek! But you do have an uncanny knack for making favorable recommendations for restaurants that correlate to my ancestry (as the chicken and chorizo stew in my refrigerator can attest) so I will have to check out Pamplona. I'm not often impressed by Spanish in NYC, though Boqueria and Sala 19 were pleasant surprises, so I hope Pamplona can soon be added to my list of regular spots!

                  1. re: JungMann

                    I'm with MMRuth on Pamplona. Went for Saturday dinner during the summer/early fall and it was one of the poorer mealsl I've had in the city. I'd do a search and check out some of the other reviews.

            2. re: JungMann

              I like Bread Bar too - and if the OP goes to Boqueria, be sure to get the mushroom croquettes - amazing. I do prefer Casa Mono, but Boqueria was quite good - we actually got a second order of those croquettes!

            3. Tia Pol and El Quinto Pino are great, but you'll have to wait for a walk in. Gottino is good for Italian small plates. I've read good things about Dell'Anima but haven't made it yet.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Lucia

                I just went to Tia Pol last night for a couple of glasses of wine, and some tapas. The potato tapas was excellent. The wine list is terrific, but ordering by the glass can be rather expensive, considering that a lot of wines these wines can be had from Wine Library for ten or eleven dollars. I know restaurants have to mark up wine and I don't have a problem with that, but the pour was rather stingy, I felt. Other than that, Tia Pol is a good tapas bar, with a very young crowd late Friday night (at least for me, I am three times eighteen.)

              2. Okay, so after some research (the hotel was near the 1, C, E) we met at W 4th and went to Alta. What a great little spot and the food was fantastic. Although, truth be told, we ended up drinking way more calories than we ate. but the philly truffle surprise, brussel sprouts and flatbread were all great. Nice portion sizes for the price, solid, thoughtful service at the bar, if a little bit aloof at times. I definitely want to go back and work through the menu. well, what I really want to do is go back with hungry reinforcements and order the whole menu. :-)