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Manganaro on 9th's amazingly rude service

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So...I'm writing about a place no-one cares about or patronizes but I just needed to vent.

I recently starting working around Penn Station and am usually too busy to actually go anywhere for lunch so today I thought I'd enjoy the nice weather and look around Ninth Avenue to see what my choices were. I stumbled upon Manganaro's (not Hero Boy) and thought it looked like a cool old-school Italian deli with little tables in the back. I figured I'd give it a try. There was just one other customer trying to make up his mind when the old woman behind the counter gruffly asked what he wanted. He ordered the meatball sub and she looked displeased. She then asked me what I wanted and since I was having pasta and homemade veal ragu for dinner I opted for a roast beef and mozarella with basil sandwich. To which she replied under her breath "How did I guess?" I was sort of like WTF and then she said "All of these adventurous choices from you people." It was not said jokingly. Then she barked at her helper to go get the beef and I said "You know what...forget it." and walked out. The basil looked moldy anyway.

I know this isn't even a blip on the radar screen of bad service but when you go out trying to enjoy the day and something like this happens--it sort of ticks you off.

I ended up walking to the Rafiqi's cart in front of FIT for a chicken and salad. Still great after all this time.

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  1. its notoriously like that...and the food is meh...

    1. Here's my amusing experience there. www.chowhound.com/topics/465608

      2 Replies
      1. re: guttergourmet

        guttergourmet, your earlier post is hilarious....thanks for attaching!

        it's always amazed me how both those places manage to stay open. they're certainly not winning any converts by virtue of their service!

        1. re: guttergourmet

          Great story. Jfood's question is did you go next store for cannoli. He heard they were delivered fresh that morning.

        2. I remember I had a similar experience at Tottono's in Brooklyn years ago. My ex (part Italian-American) was getting a kick out of it, saying how much he loved this type of service. He apparently found it comical, saying it's typical.

          Pastoralia, I'm also with you -- not crazy about service like that. I'd rather have people be polite and professional rather than having to deal with characters.

          1. P

            On a scale of 1-10 her comment maybe gets a 4. Jfood would have shrugged and looked at the menu some more for next time. Now the food not being good is another story.

            But in the end you had one of jfood's favorite street meater, Raffiqi's. Jfood loves the lamb on pita, lettuce tomato and white sauce. And depending on whether the afternoon was meetings or conference calls dictates the fried onion no/yes decision. And you're near the only White Castle around. Many do not like but it brings back great childhood memories.