Dinner for one tonight- Staying in Financial District
I have my meals planned out for most of my trip except for tonight. I arrive JFK at 5:00 and taking car service to hotel which is the Gild Hall on 15 and Gold street. I have no aversions to subway travel, taxi or just plain footing it around. I am interested in eating some great Korean, Middle Eastern or Chinese ( all foods not covered in my next night of dinners) As mentioned in my subject line, I will be dining alone, budget for dinner is 50 without drinks.
Oh one last request please.... sheepishly hangs her head... Can you please educate a west coaster on what side of the city (East or West) the Financial District is located in. In trying to map out subway routes it seems to be consistent stating "from the East or From the West side of town" Or is my barometer so far off it's actually North/South.
Thanks NY chowhounder's for the help.
Unfortunately, FiDi is usually completely dead at night and as such the restaurant scene is very weak. Most places seem to be steakhouses of middling quality. I'd urge you to venture out by subway/taxi to find something better, especially for great ethnic food.
The one notable exception in FiDi is SHO Shaun Hergatt, but that's over your desired price range ($69 for a 3 course prix fixe dinner). If you're willing to spend more than $50 for a fine dining meal, SHO is far and away the best choice in FiDi.
The East/West dividing line is 5th Ave. However, in FiDi, which is near the southern tip of Manhattan, that distinction doesn't really exist. That information is more useful if you're traveling to FiDi from uptown (mostly to see which subway line or bus to take), but since your hotel is in FiDi it shouldn't matter much.
as mentioned by the others, the financial district doesn't feature too many great dinner places. it hasn't been residential for too long (really, only since after the terrorist attacks). so there aren't enough locals to sustain a business.
if you aren't averse to getting on the train and want to try some great middle eastern food. i strongly recommend getting on the 2/3 subway (which is just a couple blocks from your hotel) and hit Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. From the Wall Street station, it's 2 stops, from the Fulton St. station, it's 3 stops. There are a bunch of authentic middle eastern restaurants. they are by no means fancy, but they are excellent and you won't feel AT ALL self-conscious eating there alone.
You could also hop in a cab. You'll get to drive across the Brooklyn Bridge and it'll take you all of 10 minutes to get there. The cab will probably cost around $10 one-way.
Check the boards for reviews on restaurants called "Fountain", "Waterfall" and "Tripoli".
As the other replies have said, the Financial District is pretty barren in the evenings. I agree that SHO is your best bet (but slightly above your budget). If you're in the mood for pizza, Adrienne's on Stone Street has a decent thin-crust. The only other thing I can think of in the area is Les Halles (French brasserie), which is on John Street.
If you are feeling adventurous and don't mind wandering around, you can hop on the R/W subway line (which is within a 5-10 minute stroll from your hotel). Take the train uptown; you will hit Canal Street in about 3 stops, which is Chinatown. It does get a little confusing and chaotic out there though, so be warned. If you travel uptown more, to the 34th street stop, there are a bunch of Korean restaurants on 32nd Street, between 5th Avenue and Broadway. Both K-town and Chinatown will most definitely fall under your budget.
Good luck on your dinner!
Across the street from your hotel is Harry's Italian at 2 Gold St. Good food,casual setting,nice bar,friendly service.As far as the types of cuisine that you mentioned,I think you would have to travel by subway or taxi.Can't think of any in the immediate vicinty of your hotel.Chinatown is a 15 minute walk north from your hotel or a five minute cab ride.
A friend of mine recommends Oriental Garden.Other spots in Chinatown that get good reviews are Peking Duck House,Amazing 66 and the Golden Unicorn.
A place I Iike is Chinatown Brasserie,which is north of Chinatown.The food is good and the decor is nice.The main complaint is that you can get the same quality food in Chinatown for less money,but the restaurant's atmosphere is more upscale.They also have a very nice bar.
You could walk to the South Street Seaport.There is a large Christmas tree near the entrance and a festive atmosphere.There are several restaurants on Front Street at the Seaport. Onda-small plates Argentinian, Suteishi-Japanese,and several other fun place to drop in for an evening(Nelson Blue,Stella Maris,Fresh Salt).Hope you enjoy your trip.
If you haven't already made a plan yet, I would strongly encourage you to go slightly above your price range and dine at SHO. It really is worth it. No, it's not the type of food you asked for, but this really is a fantastic restaurant -- and I don't just mean for the Financial District. Give it a try.