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Craftbar or Aldea?

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I just noticed that Aldea was rated one of the 10 best new restaurants by GQ. Worth the hype? I'm going to be in town for just one night and wanted to eat near Gramercy without breaking the bank.

I think I've narrowed my options to Aldea or Craftbar

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  1. I haven't been to Craftbar, but Aldea is really, really good.

    1. Conversely, I haven't been to Aldea, but Craftbar is really, really good.

      The pork belly is one of the best dishes I've had in a long time. And the olive oil cake dessert was fabulous, all the elements bringing different flavors that complemented each other to create a whole that was even better than the sum of its parts.

      1. Aldea is Portuguese cuisine -- do you have that kind of cuisine near you? Aldea is excellent AND pretty unique even for NYC.

        1. SO had dinner at Aldea last night and said service was a little off. He mentioned pacing. Food was very good (cuttle fish, etc.). We've both been before and it's one of our favorite restaurants. Their signature dish is the duck paella.

          Note: Aldea (or some mystery person) cancelled my opentable.com reservation even though it was used. When I called today they said there was nothing they could do about it after the fact . . .

            1. Granted I've only been there once for dinner, and it could have been an off night, but Aldea wasn't all that creative or spectacular. One dish stood out as great (uni toast) one was pretty good (arroz con pato) and everything else was largely forgettable. They forgot our foie, service was hit or miss, and pacing was a little off. We ate at the kitchen bar/pass, and that part was enjoyable, but other than that I don't think it lived up to the hype. The shrimp alinho was off tasting (a little too much of that iodine-y taste), the sea bass was dry and a bit overcooked, and under seasoned.
              I've been back for lunch, and the food was a little more even, but I think there are better options than there.