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Little owl? Or somewhere else....

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We're coming to New York for the first time and after some research are probably going to try and get a reservation for the little owl. What do those of you that have been there think of your experience? If we can't get in there, where else should we go? There's SO many restaurants up there that's it's becoming impossible to figure out where to go. All suggestions are GREATLY appreciated (we're staying in Times Square, so the closer to there, the better).

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  1. Little Owl is very good but it is very difficult to get a reservation. I have only been there once because, though I enjoyed it very much, it just doesn't seem special enough to warrant all the advance planning. In addition, I think we had the one good table in the place, in the corner by the window. The other tables all looked cramped to me. I much prefer Perilla for food of similar style, and nicer atmosphere, in the same price range, and it is not nearly as difficult to reserve.

    What other types of food and atmosphere are you interested in? There are literally hundreds of good possibilities, so if you could narrow it down a little you will get some good recommendations.

    5 Replies
    1. re: rrems

      Well, I guess I could say what we're not interested in, and hopefully that will help. We're not interested in anything that we can find somewhere else, especially in our neck of the woods (South Florida) so we're not too interested in steak houses, or Latin restaurants (unless of course they're too good to pass up). I guess we want to know where locals go to get great food without breaking the bank. Of course you hear about Per Se and Le Bernardin and DB, but those are pretty expensive from what I understand. So we want places with similar quality and service that maybe aren't getting as much hype yet. THANKS!

      1. re: IDGuofM

        If you want creative food but not in the very expensive range, but somewhere between Little Owl or Perilla and Le Bernardin, etc., some suggestions are Olana, Dovetail, Bar Blanc, Allen and Delancey, and Compass.

        1. re: rrems

          very good choices and alternatives here.

          ive been to little owl maybe 5x and it gets more boring everytime. its mainly a good date spot...

          foodwise, i much prefer perilla.

          1. re: rrems

            I would add Degustation to the "creative and not very expensive" list. 5 courses for $50 is hard to beat.

            1. re: biondanonima

              Now that I have tried it, I would add it to my list of recs also.

      2. I just went to little owl this past thursday. BF and i grabbed a walk-in table around 7:15 after waiting no more than 15 minutes? I LOVED it. It was probably one of the best meals ive had in a while. We shared the sardines in brown butter and slider for apps. The sardines were very very good- the brown butter was strong, but not overbearing. yum! the sliders were great as well, though probably my least favorite of the dishes. For mains we split the scallops and the porkchop. The pork, as many ohers have reviewed, was huge and perfectly cooked. It was flavorful and simple and, as a pork lover, prety much all i could have asked for. The scallops were equally perfect- tender and smokey with sweet green grapes, bok choy and celery. Clean flavors, absolutely perfect. I loved every bite of this meal and would definitely recommend it. Allen and delancey is also a fantastic choice...

        1 Reply
        1. re: bastet212

          Thank you so much for the review, any others would be great along with more suggestions. Thanks!