Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
May 27, 2008 07:40 AM

W. 39th bet. 7th & 8th Ave. - weekday lunch

Hi! I just started a job at 39th bet. 7th & 8th aves and am looking for a good lunch spot. Any recommendations?? :)

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Go Go Curry, 38th close to 8th Ave on the north side, pretty good Japanese curry, tonkatsu and so forth. Next door is Ying Du, very cheap 3 for $4 Chinese lunch spot, good quality for the money. Cafe Macaron on 36th between 7th and Broadway, very good sandwiches, French onion soup, great macarons and quality coffee and espresso drinks made with Counter Culture. It's a small place, so if you want to sit, get there before 12 or after 2. Szechuan Gourmet, 39th between 5th & 6th, great, authentic sichuan place, no dumbed-down lunch specials. Cupcake Cafe @ Casa, 9th Ave across from Port Authority. Food-wise they only have soup, but it's usually a hearty, homemade, tasty soup served with a corn muffin or soda bread, in a quirky, friendly atmosphere. Many don't like the cupcakes, but I do, and they have lots of other good sweets. I like the old-fashioned-style donuts. A little further away, there's a new branch of Fay Da Bakery on 34th between 7th & 8th, good for morning buns. Burgers & Cupcakes purveys usually-good (but sometimes off) burgers on 9th Ave around 35th St.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Peter Cuce

      I'm one who doesn't like the cupcakes at Cupcake Cafe but heartily recommend the donuts. In addition to Peter's recs, there's Lazarra's Pizza (38th btw 7th and 8th), Pick-a-Pita (same), and Al's Deli on 7th at 34th.

    2. Pick a Pita (mentioned above) on W38th Btw. 7th and 8th. Literally a hole in the wall - you have to walk through a frieght elevator entrance to get to the store front. The falafel is SO good there. I like Azuki - 8th ave at 36th for sushi and japanese. They are not the "world's greatest" but they do the trick for office lunch. West Tandoori Club for Indian, they are on W37th btw. 7th and 8th, and they have a lunch buffet everyday. Sandwich Planet on 9th ave. btw 39th and 40th, big salads, sandwiches and burgers. Aura 9th ave btw. 35th and 36th for Thai - yellow curry noodle soup with shrimp is addictive. Aceluck another Thai place is a little further north on 9th - they are not bad either, I haven't had any stand out dishes there, though. The Village on the corner of 8th and 38th is the place to go if you're out of ideas and you want a deli sandwich, HUGE turkey burger or a buffet lunch. I don't really eat their hot buffet food, but their spring mix is always fresh and the pasta salads are actually really good. My favorite is penne with pesto and roasted pignoli nuts. Ben's Kosher deli on W38th btw 7th and 8th has the best matzoh ball soup. Sometimes I like to get half corned beef sandwich/soup combo, even though it is a little more expensive then average.
      Hope you enjoy!

      12 Replies
      1. re: bosun

        Have you tried the Shawafel at Pick-A-Pita? One of the few places in the city that does it.

        1. re: bosun

          I'm not a fan of West Tandoori Club, where the tastes are neither particularly Indian nor good, and neither of the aforementioned Thai restaurants do it for me, although I guess they're OK for Manhattan Thai. Ben's Kosher Deli is OK.

          1. re: Peter Cuce

            Can you recommend a better Indian place in the area? I was sort of laying out as many choices as possible. W30's aren't exactly the food capital of NYC.

            1. re: bosun

              There's none near there, but Spice Fusion on 8th between 47th & 48th, despite the terrible name, has some unusual offerings and distinct flavorings.

              1. re: bosun

                Minar on 31st is not bad for Indian. For the OP -- they do deliver if you don't have enough time to walk down there.

                There's also Olympic Pita on 38th between 5th and 6th for falafel, schwarma, Israeli cuisine. There's also Djerdan on 38th between 7th and 8th for Balkan cuisine. Not really a huge fan of the stuff, though it seems like a lot of hounds like it. Wichcraft is at Bryant Park. A couple of chains worth mentioning -- Pret a Manger on 40th and Broadway and another one is coming to 38th and 6th. There's Le Pain Quotidien on 40th between 5th an 6th. And then you've got all the Korean restaurants between 5th and 6th (or Broadway) between 32nd Street to 36th Streets. Trini-pak cart on 44th off of 6th ave for chicken and rice plates. Market Cafe on 9th between 38th and 39th is also good though a bit pricier than the other choices outlined above. And if you go to Burgers and Cupcakes, be sure to get a cupcake, especially the red velvet and yellow with chocolate ganache.

                1. re: Miss Needle

                  I'll have to check out Minar. Thanks!

                2. re: bosun

                  Actually, there are a ton of good eats in the W30s. I'm always amazed to read statements that it's a chow wasteland, etc. BTW, is the Pakistani place still open on 9th? They do passable Indian, though I agree with Ms. Needle's rec of Minar.

                  1. re: a_and_w

                    AW, are you talking about the Pakistani on 8th? Because I think there's one on 8th and 39th Street. If that's the one you're talking about, yes, they are still open.

                    1. re: Miss Needle

                      No, 9th, around 35th?? The one on 8th is vile -- the server sneezed all over my kebab before handing it to me. Instead of apologizing, she actually made a joke about special spices.

                      1. re: a_and_w

                        I never knew there was a Pakistani place on 9th around 35th. But, then again, I try not to be in that area too often because I can't help getting a cupcake from Mitchel London. : )

                        I've never been to the one on 8th. Thanks for letting me know about them. Yuck!

                        1. re: Miss Needle

                          The one on 9th is passable, the one on 8th is vile as stated. Minar's decent.

                3. re: Peter Cuce

                  I work at 37th and 8th, and word on the street is that West Tandoori Club cleaned up their act. They classed the place up and I've been hearing good reviews from co-workers on the lunch combos, particularly the vegetarian combo. I've got to check it out soon. I went there for lunch once before and it was creepy inside and the food was not fresh.

              2. I'll add a few choices: Market Cafe on 9th near 38th is nice. Aura and Aceluck are both good, and there's a new place called Thai Select. Chef Yu on the corner of 36th and 8th is decent chinese. There's also a thai place on 36th (Royal Thai?) between 8 and 9. It's pretty run of the mill... good, not outstanding.

                There's also a turkish place on 9th and 39-40 which is pretty good.

                I'm not a fan of the Go Go Curry, though I don't think there's anything wrong with it. It's just not to my taste.

                1. Labeleca is on 40th bet. 7th/8th, near 7th. Great chicken parm subs. Haven't tried the meatball or veal parm, but I bet they're both good too! Go Go Curry is yummy for the occasional comfort food fix.Definitely go with a chicken or katsu topping. Bigger sizes just mean more rice.

                  1. Something I didn't mention yesterday is this small tucked away Mexican or maybe Dominican(?) place on w37th btw. 7th & 8th. I have not gone in yet, but I noticed it a while ago and keep forgetting to pop in. I have to check it out and report back. I think they have pernil - yum.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: bosun

                      If this is the place I remember (haven't worked in the garment district in a couple years) it is run by an Ecuadorian man but the food is relatively generic. Not in a bad way, it's tasty, but it's pretty basic rice w/ meat stew and tamales type of thing. Is it the one that is in a freight entrance on north side of the street, small stall set way in the back with just a few stools? I liked it quite a bit, very cheap.