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Xmas Day Dinner Recs. please

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We are visitors from UK in NY from 24th - 29th Dec. I have made a few reservations so far but struggling with a decision for Xmas Day itself. Have been on the Trip Advisor boards for ages but it's the same restaurants that get recommended there time and time again and nothing is appealing to me. We are mid 30s couple, no kids, willing to splurge and like contemporary places with a bit of a buzz / vibe about them (not full of "beautiful people" though!). Somewhere that has a nice atmosphere and good service.

For Xmas day we have narrowed it down to Steak/house / Italian or "Contemporary American" We are already booked for Del Friscos on Xmas Eve. We are not into the really high end fine dining (e.g. Per Se, Jean Georges, Gordon Ramsay etc.), I don't eat shellfish.

Wine list unimportant, location not too important - we are staying on East 50th but no problem to take taxi.

I am familiar with opentable and would prefer to make reservations via website.

Suggestions welcome, thank you !

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  1. Personally, instead of Del Frisco's (it's a chain), I'd go to Keens, which is a NYC institution, having been in its 36thSt. location since 1885! Thus, in addition to excellent steaks, chops, etc., there is the unmatchable Old New York ambiance -- walls filled with memorabilia and row-upon-row of old clay smoking pipes suspended from all the ceilings, and pipes belonging to famous people dating back to the 19th century in display cases in the vestibule. Keens is open on Christmas Eve but not on Christmas Day.

    http://www.keens.com

    As far as Christmas Day goes, even if you don't reserver through OpenTable, it is a good tool for researching which restaurants are open on Christmas Day. A quick look at the list shows that Park Avenue Winter, on 63rd St., b/t Park & Lex, is serving dinner that day. The Contemporary American cuisine is quite good, and the winter decor (it changes with each season) is very attractive, much "warmer" than it appears in photos.

    http://www.parkavenuewinter.com

    3 Replies
    1. re: RGR

      Hi, I just wanted to close the loop on this one and say that at the time of your reply, there were only reservations at Park Avenue Winter available at 3pm or 9pm, neither of which suited, however other times have just become available via opentable so I have gone ahead and booked - the menu looks lovely, looking forward to it, thanks for the recommendation. We're sticking with Del Friscos though!

      1. re: cf2404

        Some favorites are the Elephant (but small and loud), Crispo, Rayuela, Alta, Falai, Morimoto (more of a scene, but like the food).
        Enjoy

        1. re: cf2404

          cf2404,

          Thanks for "closing the loop."

          Looking at PAW's menu. I see they're offering rack of lamb. We had it last winter, and it was excellent. They even carved it tableside. Also, the delicious stack of little potato latkes are not to be missed! They're so popular, they keep them on the menu through all the seasons.

          Richard Leach's desserts are always wonderful. (He's been at the restaurant from when it opened many years ago as Park Avenue Cafe.) I see he's doing a Winter White Citrus Confection, which sounds a lot like what I had. Delectible!

          Enjoy and Bon Appetit!