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Jul 6, 2009 07:19 AM

New hood- 69th & 1st- Good eats? Bagels?

Hi there,
If all goes well today, I'll be signing a lease for a place on 69th & 1st...exactly 20 blocks south of where I currently live. I'm pretty familiar with the UES, but not so much the 60's & 50's. It seems to be an area with more businesses than restaurants...different from the upper 80's. Any recommendations? I was looking for a bagel place close to 69th and didn't see anything within 3 blocks, but I figure something has to be close with the hospitals being right there.

Any ideas for ANY food stops/restaurants are appreciated!


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  1. hi laura! welcome to your new hood! There is a really good bagel place (they bake them there) I think called bagelworks midblock on 1st between 66th/67th, (east side of the street, the block south of the playground. It is TINY so easy to miss. I'm not sure if it even has a sign anymore. There is also a small but decent green market on 68th between 1st/york saturdays (slightly odd used clothing/flea market on the block in front of it). Pain Quotidien on 68th/1st. (a huge one that doesn't seem to get too packed). Decent sushi at Ko (2nd and 70th), I shop mostly at citarella 75th/3rd or graces 71st/3rd. Wine--garnet on 68th/lex right when you get out of the subway. Huge selection, good prices and helpful staff. Really good (and cheap too) tiny italian, cipolla rossa, on 61/62nd and 1st, opposite bed bath and beyond. They don't have a liquor liscence so its BYOB but all fresh/super delicious. oh! and decent cheap produce at the deli on 71st and 2nd (cheap herbs in the refridgerated cases at the back that last much longer than most) .

    2 Replies
    1. re: preppie foodie

      i think the bagels at cafe fresco (next door to bagelworks) are 100 times opinion.
      Melange is good for sandwiches. There's two; one on 1st btwn 64th and 63rd and the other is on 1st btwn 67th and 68th.
      Pizza Park makes a good margarita pie...they make personal pies too.
      Cork and Bottle has lots of "two for" specials on wine.

      1. re: notsochubbychubette

        Love the a la vodka pasta slice at pizza park!

    2. Cippola Rossa, at First & 65th for good, very reasonably priced Tuscan Trattoria food. Luscious Thai, same block, is decent by Manhattan Thai standards. Rectangles at First & 75th for Israeli-Yemenite food.

      1. Bagels - in addition to the BagelWorks, there is another bagel place on the SW corner of 67th and 1st and also a Lenny's on 1st between 68 and 69.

        Italian - Cippola Rossa, Mediterraneo on 2nd and 66th (nice, outdoor seating), Felice on 64th and 1st (wine bar, also with outdoor seating), Il Vaggabondo on 61st or 62nd between 1st and 2nd (classic old-school with a bocci court in the back).

        Thai - I second Luscious Thai.

        Sushi - Matsu on 70th between 1st and York (typical, average place that delivers).

        Middle Eastern market - Melange on 1st btw 64 and 65 and I think they have another place (maybe same owners) further up on 1st around 68th.

        Rotisserie chicken - Chicken Kitchen on 62nd and 2nd.

        Markets - I second the deli on 2nd and 71st. Unfortunately, there are no good, cheap supermarkets in the area. In addition to the ones mentioned, there is also a Gourmet Garage on 64th and 1st (which, like the others, is not cheap). I try to get most of my produce on the street and then get staples at Fairway of TJ's when I'm there.

        Will try to think of other things also...

        1. Chirpin' Chicken on 1st and 66th has great burgers
          Pizza Park for good pizza, even sell whole wheat pizza with low fat cheese 1st and 66th
          Vinci's on 1st and I think 61st? for great pasta
          Second Melange for Falafel
          Tawa right off of 1st and I think 67th for Indian (not sit down, more fast food style)

          4 Replies
          1. re: eameyer

            Run to Mediterraneo for fresh handcut pastas and delightful carpaccio, and a bustling scene both indoors and out. Inexpensive and located on 2nd Avenue and 66th Street.

            Btw, I didn't find the 61st Street Cipolla Rossa matches the quality of the 89th (90th?) Street location (which is to die for!) on my first try, but reading these reviews, I'll give it another shot. Maybe they were experiencing growing pains in its first month, when I tried it.

            Sushi Suzu (1st Avenue and 59th Street) serves fresh sushi at fair prices. They don't have a huge selection and the pieces are a little large, but their fish is consistently fresh (must've eaten there 50-60 times by now) and they make a killer spicy salmon roll.

            For Chinese, try the place on 1st Avenue btw 69th-70th Streets located on the east side of the Avenue. The name escapes me, but it delivers good dim sum by attentive wait staff. Avoid China Fun and Asia Grill at all costs -- you can smell their cooking oil a block away.

            Also stay away from 879-Taco on 1st Avenue and ?66th Street. Mexican food by claim only.

            For healthy, "fast food" check out Lenny's on 1st Avenue and 68th Street. I'm also a Melange fan -- they have not only falafel, desserts and cheese, but fresh, savory soups and salads. A very good deal and much better than the new falafel place next door at its 68th Street location (Nanoosh?).

            No large market in that area beats Agata Valentina on 1st Avenue and 79th Street -- it's worth the trek to bypass Gourmet Garage and Food Emporium Bridge Market. Yuck.

            I've heard good reviews from friends of Accademia del Vino, though I haven't tried it yet.

            1. re: uppereastsidechic

              Have to agree based on a single visit to the Cipolla Rossa location on 61st Street. The food was barely passable, the service laughably inept (when it existed) and the noise level shrill and unpleasant. All in all a huge disappointment that left me baffled in light of several positive posts. Mediterraneo a much better option in my experience.

              1. re: burton

                I've only been to Cippola for lunch. Service was slow every time, but the place was never crowded. Maybe that's part of the difference.

              2. re: uppereastsidechic

                Name of the Chinese Rest. is Evergreen.

            2. Bagel Works on 1st between 66 & 67, has a beautiful Sourdough Bagel