ISO best Manhattan diner
including but not limited to where you can get a great patty melt, fries and shake!
preferably below midtown.
I like Everest, in Chatham Sq. It's a great place to go for a quick and tasty pancake breakfast. It's got a friendly and very fast staff.
I guess the food is nothing special--obviously the pancakes are nowhere near what you would get at Clinton St., but like any good diner it is relaxed and makes you feel comfortable.
There's also a place on Church and Chambers that I like. They do a quick, no frills lunch business.