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date spot near nyu - last minute advice

i'm in a pinch: i have tickets for a show downtown but have not yet dealt with dinner plans.
are there any good to great spots around the nyu area that come to mind?
my brain is frozen today.
price can be flexible though preferably not insane and i guess we'd prefer to stick around the asian or mediterranean parts of the globe.
also--this does not have to be ultra-romantic...just nice. (i.e. not cafeteria style)

thanks,

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  1. What's your budget? Are you asking for pre-show dinner or post-show dinner?

    9 Replies
    1. re: kathryn

      pre-show. i'd like to keep it under 125.

        1. re: jon462

          thanks. forgot about mermaid but we've already been a few times.

        2. re: oystersallday

          Hmm, I think that's pretty generous, I bet you can easily stay under that. Maybe Jane, Lupa, Rhong-Tiam.

          1. re: kathryn

            thanks for these. Lupa over otto? i haven't been to either but was just checking out otto and it looks incredibly reasonable.

            1. re: oystersallday

              Otto is a little easier to get into because it's huge. The food is slightly better at Lupa, I think, but Lupa is always super crowded.

              1. re: oystersallday

                Otto is great. That was the rec I was planning on making when I read your post. Just be warned that it is loud.

                1. re: oystersallday

                  Otto is great. Good wines, food good and price is great. Nice atmosphere as well. I would head there.

                  1. re: oystersallday

                    the problem with both Otto and Lupa are that you may have long uncertain waits, which will add stress to your pre-show meal (not to mention the typical Batali restaurant rude and snotty staff)...i refuse to eat at any Batali-owned establishment, a hard and fast rule (i broke my rule recently by going to the Spotted Pig and was disgusted as usual, and vowed to be more strict in the future)...

                    if you want Italian in the East Village, i'd recommend going to Cacio e Vino...mellow Sicilian w/ great regional specials and a cozy yet casual vibe...

                    where exactly is the show you are going to?...(nyu area is pretty wide)...maybe we can find a suggestion that's only a few blocks away...

            2. Zabb City (thai). The best in the city (IMO) and cute and low key.

              1. Desnuda - new cevicheria downtown (7th st btwn 1st ave and ave a) All fish, all fresh, great prices!!!!

                1. Terroir. The food is awesome. The wine list provides an area of discussion and at that hour its simple to get in. I think its the best wine bar in the entire world and if the play is no good you guys can both be hammered.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: wazup1999

                    the wine selection at Terroir is wonderful...but the one dish i had when i stopped in there, the sage-wrapped deep-fried lamb-sausage was like eating a deep-fried salt-shaker: absurdly over-salted and the lamb was almost raw...but there are lots of other things on the menu and the charcuterie items and salads looked very good...

                    1. re: Simon

                      Thanks for all these great recommendations. i can't wait to try them. I ended up at Rhong-Tiam primarily because it was so conveniently located. Oddly, when we asked to see a wine menu, our server told us that "they were out of wine," but that we were welcome to byob. I spent way less than my $125 maximum... so another date is in order.