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Where do the stars eat?

My mom is planning a visit. She hasn't been this way for years and wants to go for dinner and a Broadway show.

She asked me if the stars still eat at Sardis... I had no clue what to respond...

Any rec's for where to take starstruck mom for dinner? I don't know if this be post matinee or post evening performance...

Any help appreciated.

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  1. Eh, you could try Minetta Tavern, Waverly Inn or Spotted Pig, but all of these places will be pretty tough to get into.

    3 Replies
    1. re: ExFlexitarian

      agreed ex-flex.

      or monkey bar to some extent.

      i've seen celebs in the oddest places. depending on who you are looking to see, most of the time, it takes someone else in my party to make me notice.

      cindy crawford at elias corner in astoria....michael stipe at vatan...reese witherspoon at commerce....hilary swank at the subway IN the rockefelller center subway (seriously). there are some very old school places on the east side -- gino's, le perigord -- that draw celebs of, shall we say, "a certain age" (telly savalas was the neighbor of my one-time s.o's parents, and he frequented both). but it is so hit and miss.

      will try to think of more

      1. re: ExFlexitarian

        As well the Four Seasons, but it's timeless. Another that tries hard to discreetly fly under radar but is filled with familiar faces is the restaurant at the Carlyle.

        1. re: ExFlexitarian

          definitely all three of ExFlex's sugeestions. you could also try Da Silvano, Il Cantinori, Bagatelle, Balthazar, Megu or Dell' Anima. Stanton Social and La Esquina are celeb hotspots as well, but not really "Mom" places ;)

          ETA: Veggo has me thinking about old-school...there's always Cipriani!

        2. Trish,

          I've heard that after evening performances, stage stars can be found at Broadway Joe's. I can't confirm it from personal experience since we've never been there.


          I would avoid Sardi's. Two words: Tourist trap!

          1. Thanks everyone for not flaming me for this one! Great suggestions!

            Gosh, RGR, Broadway Joe's...Never would have thought of that one as I figured it to be a dump...but then again, an uncrowded dump just might be the lure to stars wanting to keep a low profile....Hmmm... I have some more checking out to do....

            2 Replies
            1. re: TrishUntrapped

              we wouldn't flame you for trying to keep mom happy! hope she enjoys, wherever you chose.

              1. re: TrishUntrapped


                Well, it is your *mom* who is the star-struck one. I'm fully aware that for *you*, it's all about the food! So, there's no way I would ever flame you.

                Now that I've read sugartoof's reponse below, I think I've confused Broadway Joe's with Joe Allen, although it's still entirely possible that some stars might turn up at B.J.'s as well.


                ETA: I've actually spotted more personalities while just walking along the streets. Eons ago, I saw Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward in matching trench coats walking arm-in-arm on 34th St. I once spotted Tony Randall crossing the street on 57th.

                My most recent restaurant citing was a couple of months ago -- Robert Wagner and Jill St. John at La Grenouille. Actually, this was my second time seeing Wagner in a restauant. The other time was quite a while ago in an upscale restaurant called The Dining Room (now closed), in New Jersey. It was in the Short HIlls Hilton, and he appeared to be having a business dinner.

              2. If you are going to a Broadway show, the best bet is to dine after the performance, and the place where the stars go is Orso. A bonus is that the food is excellent.

                1. Sardi's does still host stars for dinner, but they're usually there for private functions, fundraisers, that kind of thing. There's really no reliable spots to go for celebrity sightings, especially if you're after Broadway stars specifically. If it's a special dinner they might go to Joe Allen or someplace on restaurant row, but there's no modern day equivalent of a Sardi's now. Not even Sardi's.

                  Da Silvano is the only place I can think of known to attract stars on a regular basis.
                  Monkey Bar and Minetta Tavern are sort of hot for drinks.
                  Waverly Inn still goes through weeks where is sounds like stars are flooding the place, but it's curious how these reports only come in waves. I suspect one of the owners/Vanity Fair editor invites his friends when he needs to get press for the place. The food is second rate and absurdly expensive.

                  1. Favorite celebrity sighting ever: David Johanssen (NY Dolls, Buster Poindexter, etc) at the now-defunct Cosmic Diner, up near Columbus Circle. He fit in with the vibe perfectly, didn't miss a beat. Come to think of it, that whole area is pretty good for star-sighting. I saw Michael Moriarty at some generic 57th Street cafe once, and used to see Peter Falk all the time at the Art Students League. Disclaimer: I wouldn't recommend their cafeteria, but the dried up linseed oil smell is good for a mild buzz.

                    1. Sardis is a total rip off and not worth your time. There are so many great restaurants in NYC; avoid this dump.

                      1. Philippe (saw Martha Stewart)
                        Jean Georges (saw Betsey Johnson)


                        1. Just an aside - in the summer, you might be less likely to see them. We see quite a few up in Carnegie hill, but it can be hit or miss.

                          1. The last time I was having drinks at Un Deux Trois I saw John Turturro having dinner.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: Bob Martinez

                              I used to spot Turturro in Park Slope when I lived there - I think he lived in the neighborhood. Steve Buscemi, too. Saw him in Cousin John's a couple of times.

                              1. re: Polecat

                                I saw Turturro in Aunt Suzie's in the late 90's.

                                A few month back I found out that John Hodgman also lives in the Slope. A very funny guy.


                            2. Elaine's
                              1703 Second Ave., New York, NY 10128
                              nr. 88th St.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: notsochubbychubette

                                Good lord, don't eat there. The food is horrible. I did see Mickey Rourke once, though.

                              2. The highlight of my years spent in NYC was sitting near Jackie O at Petrossian

                                1. 21 Club (Saw Liza Minelli, Barbara Walters)
                                  Primola (Saw some of the cast from Gossip Girl, always on Page Six for celebrity sitings)

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: eameyer

                                    I've spotted Adam Sandler at Carmine's on Broadway, she can see Woody at the Carlyle.
                                    I always spot a "celeb" when I eat at the Four Seasons.

                                  2. Thank you all so much for these rec's! We have a wealth of choices now. Just to be on the safe side I will also do the stage door thing with her. An autograph will thrill her.

                                    RGR, I do think you might have meant Joe Allen's. I have heard that is a popular spot.

                                    Thanks also for sharing celeb sightings. I had a wonderful birthday dinner a few years ago at Balthazar, seated across from Robert Downey, Jr. That was a surprise.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                      Joe Allen does garner some celebs, as well as the bar upstairs: bar centrale. Same owner. Some broadway stars/producers frequent it after shows per report. When I've gone it's been a spur of the moment decision to go during the shows, when it's not already booked, so can't confirm.

                                    2. Da Silvano on 6th Ave in the Village.