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Two Nights in NYC - 8 Restaurants to Try!

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I have two nights in NYC. Which of the following would you suggest I try? I love creative cuisine and travel all over the country simply to eat at fabulous restaurants. My favorites to date are Alinea (Chicago), The French Laundry (Napa), Joel Robuchon and Alex (both in Las Vegas).

Here are my choices - I'm interested in your recommendations as to which ones are THE BEST!

Bouley
Eleven Madison Park
Jean Georges
Le Bernardin
Le Cirque
Masa
The Modern
Per Se

Thanks for your help!

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  1. There was a recent post on Le Cirque you might want to check out. It was not positive. I have only been to the Modern - Dining Room and Bouley (too long ago to be helpful). Our experience at The Modern - Dining Room was very good. I defer to other hounds for the rest of your list.

    1. Per Se & Masa (omikase) - would be my first two choices. Bring your wallet for masa...
      Jean Georges
      Le Bernadin
      EMP

      I have not been to Bouley in many years and have not been to the rest on your list at all.

      1. EMP for sure. Skip Per Se since you've already been to TFL. TFL provides a better setting and overall experience than Per Se IMO, unless you are on a mission to complete some Keller trifecta.

        1. If Alex in LV is one of your favorites (mine too--I'm going back to LV next week and have a reservation), you will love Bouley, Eleven Madison Park, and Per Se (makes Alex look like a bargain). I'm going for the first time to The Modern next week so I'll hold off with a recommendation until then. One of my favorites not on your list is Aureole. Have a great time!

          1. The Modern is consistently one of my faves. I've been to Eleven Madison Park once and loved it as well. You have some fantastic choices on your list- good luck deciding! (If you're in the mood for something creative and wonderful, you might want to add david burke and donatella to your list...fabulous!)

            1. Masa and Per Se. Do it. You'll be a happy camper.

              Sit at the counter at Masa and request to sit in front of Masa himself.

              1 Reply
              1. re: silencespeak

                Per Se is more like a variation and fancier version of TFL, if you liked TFL, I'd def go try. Le Bernardin is fabulous, but keep in mind it's all seafood. I know these are not on your list, but really worth the visit: Gramercy Tavern, Cafe Boulud and Blue Hill. Enjoy your trip.

              2. I dined in the bar room at The Modern last July and can't stop raving it about it! Everything about this restaurant is perfect..food, service, decor...even the restrooms! Their arctic char and steak tartare are incredible and the lamb loin was cooked to perfection. The more formal dining room has a view of the sculpture garden. I went there with my friend and all we kept talking about during dinner was dinner itself! We were looking around at the decor, the food at the other tables, etc. It was one of my best experiences in a restaurant.

                1. Of the above eight, the only ones I haven't been to are Le Cirque and Masa.

                  The two I'd cut from the remaining six are Bouley and The Modern.

                  As for the others, I'd probably choose them in the following order

                  Per Se above any of the others.

                  The following three, are all really close, and are all are fabulous.
                  Le Bernadin (only if you love seafood)
                  Jean Georges
                  Eleven Madison Park

                  1. PS- L'Atellier de Joel Robuchon here in NYC is also WONDERFUL! More casual than all the ones you are considering, but the food is on a par with them.