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Sep 1, 2009 09:18 AM

Cheap sitdown lunch around 14th and 8th

Am meeting someone for a quick lunch around 14th and 8th later in the week. Willing to head over to west of Union Square, down to 10th, and up to 18th. Looking for a place with entrees $15 -20 and under.

I don't like Republic and Coffeeshop's lines are too long. I like Taralucci e Vino and it has the right atmosphere but am looking for something new. As for cuisine, probably no sushi for her, and I hate Ethiopian.

Thoughts appreciated!

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    1. la carbonara or crispo.

        1. re: craig_g

          That was going to be my suggestion! Great Puerto Rican diner.

          1. re: City Kid

            Yeah, that's a truly cheap restaurant, and totally fine. Down home Puerto Rican food. I think it may be quite a lot cheaper than windycity is looking for, though.

            1. re: Pan

              Could well would be hard to spend even $15 on an entree there! An interesting remnant of the pre-cool days of that area -- one of the reasons I like it.

        2. Cafeteria
          119 7th Avenue (At 17th Street)

          Tyler Florence is a douchebag. Let me put that right out there. He's part of the cabal of shilling Food Network chefs who are hell bent on making us think that Applebees, TGI Friday's, Chilli's and any other food trough at the far corner of the mall is an actual restaurant. They're not. Trust me, I worked at Pizzeria Uno's. They're food processing plants with oars on the wall, and they're putting real restaurants out of business.

          BUT...if there's one thing that Tyler Florence did right, it was way back when he was executive chef at the incredible Chelsea eatery, Cafeteria. Open 24/7, they serve elegant diner food in a casual, sophisticated lounge atmosphere. Cafeteria is great anytime of day, but it is a late night oasis when you are in the mood for Mac and Cheese, Meatloaf, BLTs, and cocktails.

          Tip: Cafeteria has amazing biscuits, perfectly light and fluffy - so get everyone at the beginning of the meal to ask for more so you have plenty on hand.

          Good luck!

          1 Reply
          1. re: Edwin E.

            Thanks, but the one time I went to Cafeteria, they so overburned my sweet potato fries that I would never consider going back. Plus their kitchen was a mess that day - the waiter was telling us someone had quit, someone else was crying. Too much drama for me.

          2. i second crispo. maybe dell'anima, el cocotero, nero d'avola..