HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >


New job = new chow 'hood...Help! (Chelsea)

I'm day 4 on the job and in need of some recommendations for...

1. cheap/fast lunch

2. treat yourself lunch (Boqueria? Markt?)


3. after work drinks/snacks.

I've grabbed a quick baked falafel at Chickpea (fine), walked over to Rohm for a late lunch. Last night had some truly fantastic cocktails at Flatiron Lounge.

Where should I go?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Get thee to R.U.B. on 23rd and 7th for a quarter pound of burnt ends.

    1. Rickshaw Dumpling Bar
      Chicken rice bowl from The Pita Grill
      Bagels from Empire City Bagel
      Tre Dici (nice lunch)
      Markt (reliably decent food)
      Chips and cheese dip from Qdoba (sorry for the lame rec, but it's really good)
      Berrywild FroYo
      Grilled cheese from Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop
      Mangia (makes a decent sandwich)


      1. Sala One Nine (19th between 5th/6th) has great happy hour. 2 for 1 drinks and terrific raciones (tapas). We like to go for lunch as well - great sandwiches.

        Room Service (thai) on 8th ave between 18th/19th) has a great $6 lunch special.

        Soups at Medina (17th between bway/5th) are fabulous! In the summer I eat in the park.

        1. I went to Sala 19 for lunch and had the lentil soup with chourico and the tortilla espanola sandwich. A lot of food for $9. Will definitely get back for happy hour.

          1. How far east are you? The first place I think of when I see the word "Chelsea" is Grand Sichuan at 24th and 9th. You wouldn't experience a wait at lunch and should order off the regular menu (the Sichuan and Hunan and other specialty parts of it, not the American-Chinese, Cantonese, or Shanghainese portions thereof), not the lunch specials. It still wouldn't be a super-fast lunch, but you could probably do it in about a half an hour. An early dinner might work, too, but prime time is likely to be a huge crush and not worth it, except for takeout.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Pan

              I should have been more clear - I'm at 6th and W 20th

              1. re: MB fka MB

                It's a bit of a trek west, but you could go to La Bergamotte, which I think is at 19th or 20th and 9th. Lovely rillettes sandwich. If you cook at all, btw, there is a v. good butcher on the east side of 9th just around there.

                1. re: MB fka MB

                  Congratulations on having the only new job in the American economy!

                  City Bakery is #1 lunch around there for me, and now they have after work beer too

                  Either of the street carts on that block - the Latina hot dog lady makes good chicken with hot sauce on that grill and the middle eastern lamb schwarma if fine too
                  There's a taco truck another block down just off 6th Ave, south west

                  Tebaya Japanese chicken wing place on 19th between 6th and 7th
                  Eisenmenger's on 5th Ave @22nd for a pastrami on rye
                  The Thai place on 7th Ave has perfectly good lunch delivery
                  Uncle Moe's for Cal-Mex is fine too

                  Boqueria for a treat yourself tapas and wine afterwork - although even better is Casa Mono on the other side of Union Sq...if you're ready to spend a little money.

                  1. re: pitu

                    I'm such a regular at Casa Mono that I could probably recite the menu from memory.

                    Thanks for the rec's - I went into City Bakery and didn't like the layout of everything and left. Maybe I'll give it another try. Favorites there?

                    1. re: MB fka MB

                      re: City Bakery
                      breakfast bar with Evans yogurt (try the lemon, it's as revelatory as yogurt is ever going to be) and housemade granola.
                      The scones are lovely.

                      lunch has an ever changing cast of fresh veg and fish and meat
                      roasted, herbed, marinated, grilled and salad-ized
                      You can get a big heap of salad greens, and big flavors
                      shaved fennel, not just romaine
                      The mac and cheese is good too.
                      I get a box to go.

              2. I lived in Chelsea for the past 1.5 years and recommend Rocking Horse for great contemporary mexican (dinner) and Tono for great cheap sushi (lunch)

                1. My favorite is (tbl)Spoon on 20th between 5th and 6th -- they have about 8 sandwiches, 4 salads, 2 soups and an entree that changes every day. All freshly made with good ingredients. (I'm there pretty much every day). Takeout or sit and eat. A little pricey, but quick and tasty and potentially healthy (except the grilled cubano and the many many tempting baked goods)


                  2 Replies
                  1. re: chickfila

                    Funny, I live right by Spoon and have not once been tempted to stop in there. I still lament the loss of the Korean bodega that used to be there.

                    As for quick and casual places to grab lunch, there's Maffei's on 6th at 22nd--very good pizza, subs, and you an also get a huge container of pasta (or a combination of what's available--just ask). Even faster and more casual is the 2 Bros.$1 slice place on 6th bet. 17th/18th. Even the food place at the entrance of BB&B (corner of 6th/18th) is pretty good. I'm not a fan, but many people like Tebaya, a Japanese wing place on 19th St close to 7th.

                    Limerick House on 23rd just east of 6th is a typical and comfortable Irish pub. There's also a good pub on 23rd just west of 7th (forget the name!).

                    1. re: drmoze

                      That Korean bodega (and the resident cat) are definitely missed, but at least it was replaced by an actual food business and not some chain or another nail salon.

                      I'm just saying, for healthier food than average in the neighborhood it's a good bet.

                  2. Nooch on 8th & 17th. Cheap, fast, just not too close to your office. I love their Tom Yum noodles!

                    1. Super Taco Express -- quite tasty, and super (and I mean super) cheap and fast, recommend anything in the yummy soft tortillas that they must make fresh daily, black bean and guacamole are my favorites. Good chips too. Great value. 7th & 23rd
                      Go Sushi -- 6th ave & 8th st.
                      Uncle Moe's --19th betw 6th & 5th
                      F&B -- 23rd betw 7th & 8th
                      The City Bakery -- fast if you go at a slightly off time, watch how much you put on your plate cause you pay by the lb. but it's quick cause food's already prepared.
                      I loved Tono Sushi before they switched to full service restaurant, used to be counter service but I guess the food is still good it will just take you a bit longer & cost slightly more. why fix what ain't broke.
                      Ashby's -- 22nd near 6th
                      Boston Market -- har har -- heck it's cheap & fast so I guess it qualifies
                      Shake Shack! I tried it for the first time today. Great stuff.

                      cheap/fast is obviously my comfort zone. Welcome to the neighborhood.

                      1. I second La Bergamotte bakery. I'd also recommend Le Zie for terrific, authentic Italian food, though it can get rather noisy.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: mahler5

                          BLT Fish for lobster rolls
                          City Bakery for Chocolate chip cookies and yummy buffet
                          Rosa Mexicano for great Mexican/Happy Hour
                          Shake Shack for burgers n such
                          F & B for exotic hot dogs

                        2. El Cocotero, 18th b/w 7th & 8th