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Dinner suggestion near Rice to Riches?

We are headed to NY this weekend from Baltimore and tops on our list is dessert at Rice to Riches. We hear it is to die for. Any suggestions of where to have dinner beforehand? There will be 5 of us, dressed casual (coming from a Yankees game)..we arent interested in going to Lombardis (although we want to do that another time). Looking for a cool place, not terribly expensive. One person in our group is a pretty simple eater (not very adventerous).

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  1. I would say peasant, but i think you may be a little too dressed down and it can get a bit pricey. last time i was walking there two tourists stopped me asking for directions to bread - I haven't been there but it seems to meet your parameters and it's like a block from rice to riches.

      1. get a reservation to La Esquina, fun, cool vibe, not too pricey.

        1. Cafe Habana. There is a take out section with self seating and a full service restaurant.

          1 Reply
          1. re: DarthEater

            isn't that place impossible to get a seat at? whenever i walk by it's always really crowded.

          2. You could hit Ed's Lobster bar for great lobster rolls and fries. Decent beer and wine selection, casual place.

            1. You may want to think twice about going before a Yankee game. It will take you a while to get from Soho to the Bronx. You would have to have a very early dinner, then go for Rice to Riches. Check how early some of the restaurants open.

              2 Replies
              1. re: robinsilver

                I think the OP said that they would be coming FROM a Yankee game -- a day game I assume -- so the timing should be fine. I hsstitate to spark the great chowhound pizza wars, but I think Lombardi's would make a great post-game, pre-dessert meal.

                1. re: prdct

                  Actually at first I thought that's what she said, then when I saw "beforehand", I was thinking the game, not the rice pudding. So, now for what I wanted to say, I think a casual pizza place is the only place you would want to go after sitting through a Yankee game in this heat. Otherwise if you are up or a walk, what about someplace in Chinatown?

              2. You could try Baltazar, which is nearby. You can go dressed casually (I wouldn't go in just t-shirts and jeans, maybe a bit nicer).

                1. Finellis Cafe on Prince might be a perfect spot, much more casual (bar food) than what the other posters have recommended and very cheap. Burgers, and beer type food. If you want something a bit more upscale than that with a German twist Laurelei on Rivington could be cool, also very casual.

                  If you walk East on Spring or Prince there are a ton of casual spots including 24 Prince if you guys are Top Chef fans that's where Nikki works. Alot of options in that area to choose from. Cafe El Portal heading south on Elizabeth is also a great casual Mexican place with good food.