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Looking for Good Eats Near Stuyvesant Town/East Village

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I'm going to be staying with a friend this weekend who lives at East 16th and Avenue C in Stuyvesant Town. I'm not that familiar with this area, but from the looks of things its near the East Village. I want something walking distance to where I will be...I'm willing to walk 15 minutes or so for great food!

I'm getting in around 8pm and will probably be looking for a good place for dinner. Chances are I'll be dining by myself, so I'm looking for a place where a woman in her late-20s can dine alone, (with a book) and not feel totally out of place. I'm not looking to spend more then $40-$50 total, including a glass of wine and maybe 2 courses.

I live in DC so I would love to find a type of cuisine not readily available to me. Asian (particularly Korean, noodles, Vietnamese, Fusion), Spanish, Italian, New American, great bistros etc. I'm taking a friend out to Stanton Social on Saturday night, so I don't want anything too similar to that.

Any ideas?

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  1. is Serbian unusual enough? Kafana is on Avenue C between 7th and 8th. You can check out the menu on menupages.com. It's not expensive at all. Have a nice stay.

    6 Replies
    1. re: eeee

      Serbian is certainly unusual enough. lol I've never had it before...I'll have to check out the menu. Thanks for the suggestion.

      Any other recommendations in the East Village or Stuyvesant Town?

      1. re: Elyssa

        Avenue C options:
        Royale
        Kasadela
        Cafecito
        Esperanto
        Matilda
        Sunburnt Cow
        Zum Schneider
        Casa Adela

        Avenue B:
        http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/16/nyr...
        Perbacco
        Mercadito
        Gnocco
        Barbone
        Pizza Gruppo
        Max
        Buenos Aires
        Supper
        EU
        Grape and Grain

        1. re: kathryn

          Thanks for the list Kathryn. I'll have to look these restaurants up. Do you have a favorite?

          1. re: kathryn

            I whole-heartedly agree with Cafecito for the food, but I don't think it'd be a good place to read a book. They do have amazing food and is very cheap.
            I also agree with Zum Scneider, but this wknd is the first day of the oktobefest celebration so there it will be more of a beer-tent atmosphere (also not conducive to reading a book) and there will be a line down the block to get in. It would be a fun place to meet some new friends though. =)

            I have been to back 40 for brunch and enjoyed everything they brought out. I haven't been there for dinner, but one person in my group had and he liked it. Its usually pretty crowded though so not very conducive to reading.

            Upon further though... There aren't many places that I can think of that have good food and wouldn't be so busy on a saturday night that you could comfortably read a book, but if that is a must I would pick Barbone out of the given options. It's not very exotic, but its definitely well executed italian food. Service is slow and relaxed enough you can calmly read your book.

            Hope that helps.

            1. re: nyc_neil

              It probably doesn't matter since a weekend is a weekend...but I will be going on Friday night.

              At this point my short list is:
              Gnocco
              Barbone
              Esperanto
              Kasadela
              Apiary

              Maybe it will depend on what I want to eat. Hopefully some of these spots aren't too far from each other so if one is too crowded I can just head to the next :)
              Back Forty

              1. re: Elyssa

                no, shouldn't be much of a difference between friday and saturday.
                I have been esperanto 2-3 times and haven't been too impressed with their food. Just fyi...

      2. Bao Noodles - Vietnamese (cash only)...Food is great.
        2nd avenue between 23rd and 22nd

        1. Any thoughts on Apiary or Back Forty?

          1 Reply
          1. re: Elyssa

            Of the two, I liked Apiary better. The roasted peaches and serrano ham appetizer was glorious. I would avoid the rabbit (based on the reviews), but there are a lot of really good dishes there. Also my gf got the white sangria which was superb.
            I was at back forty for a friends birthday party and got horribly overcharged ($85 a head) for the meal, so that might be swaying my judgement. They did have some good cocktails at back forty, however, and all of the food we got was good.
            My recommendation would be to go to Barbone, though. It might be a little more expensive but the owner is great and makes phenomenal wine recommendations. Its a pretty private place too. Try the chestnut agnolotti (ravioli) if you go.

          2. I used to live not far away, and when I come to visit friends in Alphabet City and need to eat by myself I like to sit at the bar at Kasadela, which is a real Japanese izakaya. Each plate is a small order, not very expensive, and you can order as many or as few as you like. They have some excellent sakes and the bartenders are generally good company unless it's the Saturday night crush. Not a great place for reading a book, but you won't need one.