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Jan 16, 2010 08:47 AM

Boston hound looking for help with Times Square suggestions

Coming to the city in February for a conference. It's been 30 years since my last visit so I obviously need help. I'll be staying at the Marriot Marquis and would prefer to eat at a non-hotel restaurant for dinner. Bobby Flay's Mesa grill looks somewhat interesting, but I guess what I'm looking for is the opportunity to experience New York style compared to Boston style. The Boston board is filled with requests for NY style pizza for instance. Since I'll be cooped up all day, I would love a casual place, good wine or cheap wine and the perfect slice of NY pizza. So, can anyone help me out. I'll be happy to return the favor when you come to the Boston board.

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  1. Wow, I really didn't expect an entire day to go by without a response. Does it help if I say that I'm on an expense account and if there is no pizza in the immediate area a casual place with pasta or sandwiches would work just fine.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Pegmeister

      Your query is a very common one, and a quick search for "Times Square" on this board will get you started.

      Pizza is also one of the most frequently discussed topics on the Manhattan board, so you can search for that as well. There is no intersection between "perfect slice" and "Times Square," though, as far as I know.

      1. re: small h

        Thank you, and your right it's difficult to solicit comment on a board when the question has been asked so many times before. I had been lurking and searching the boards for a bit but was having trouble figuring distances etc. So, it appears that 9th Ave may be the way to go. I was looking at Marseille and as far as a spot for pizza I guess I'll just wing it and see what spot looks appealing.

      2. re: Pegmeister

        While small h is correct that pizza requests are common here, I think your particular query did not get any responses because (1) the best NYC pizza is not to be found where you are staying, i.e., Times Square/Theater District, and (2) the best pizzas are sold by the pie, not by the slice. There are places that serve whole pies sized for one person. But, again, not in your vicinity.

        For excellent pastas, I recommend Trattoria Trecolori, on 47th St., b/t B'way & 8th Av.

      3. There's a John's Pizza on 44th east of 8th Avenue that rivals the original Regina Pizza in the North End.

        5 Replies
        1. re: guttergourmet

          Do they do slices? I thought it was pies only.

          1. re: kathryn

            It doesn't have to be a slice. I'll just drag along some coworkers and grab a whole pie. Having the day off today, with really lousy weather, has given me more time to search the board. My impression is that Times Square doesn't have a lot to offer. I'm okay with grabbing a cab and have found some places that sound interesting. Wish I was going to have more than just a few days there. Thanks to the poster above for the various links. It really has been helpful. Now I need to spend some time checking out maps and understanding the way the streets are laid out.

            1. re: Pegmeister

              You can definitely check out a map but I would also look at a train map as well. If you are able to take a 15 minute train ride, you will open up LOTS of amazing choices (including very good pizza by the slice). The trains are good and fast and can lead you to delicious things! Is a train ride an option for you?
              Eat well.

              1. re: JeremyEG

                Absolutely. In fact I'm taking the Acela into New York from Boston, I welcome any suggestions you may have.

                1. re: Pegmeister

                  Cool. I love for subway directions. Mesa Grill is expensive for what it is but the drinks are really good. Search the board for best pizza recs but you might want to try Co. on 9th Avenue. Also Joe's in the village has very good pizza by the slice. Other hounds will know a lot more about pizza but I've also heard good things about Keste on Bleeker.

        2. The original Lazzara's pizza is not far from Times Square (open weekdays only). They now also have a take out spot on 9th Avenue in the 40's. Thin, square "grandma"-style pizza is their thing.

          1. Blue Fin's right there in TS - it's pretty much the only good restaurant in the square. I recommend it if you need to get somewhere to eat in a hurry (it's fish though not pizza). John's Pizza is right there too.

            1. As you consider all the suggestions above, please remember that you're in the theater district and won't be able to get a walk-in table until after 7:30 or 7:45, and will be well advised to make a reservation at anyplace like Marseille or Trattoria Tre Colori or even some pizza places.

              If you want to travel a little out of the neighborhood - head for Angelo's Pizza @ 57th between 6th & 7th. You can take the 8th Ave bus uptown & walk 2 blocks. I have great difficulty explaining to out-of-towners that we don't count distance in miles, but in blocks. 10 uptown/downtown blocks equals 1/2 mile. About 6 crosstown blocks the same.

              Many restaurants in town, including the best ones, now have dinner prix fixe menus for under $40.

              5 Replies
              1. re: Jane A.

                i second angelo's on 57th....worth traveling the extra blocks and definitely the best pizza in theater district

                1. re: Jane A.

                  Oh, hadn't thought about the need for a reservation, that's really helpful. In Boston, it's easy to walk right in, if you're there before 6:00 pm, as will be the case when I'm in NY. I have a pretty good list compiled so if I don't get reservations for my first choice, it will just mean a return visit and not when I'm tied down to a business conference. Thanks for all the help!

                  1. re: Pegmeister

                    I think John's is the best but Lazzara's and Angelo's are good calls too.

                    1. re: guttergourmet

                      Agree with that. And if you are looking for NY style coal oven pizza and are willing to take a 15 minute subway or cab ride, John's of Bleecker St. is a great choice. The original branch is currently the oldest continuingly operating pizza place in NYC (Totonnos of Coney Island is older but still closed after a fire) and still serves a good old-school NY thin curst pie. Places like Co., Keste, Luzzo, Motorino, for whatever their merits, are really not "NY style."

                      1. re: guttergourmet

                        dont go to john's..the time squre location lacks..soggy and greasy...they want tourists in and out and totally lack on quality. Any other john's location i would reccomend though.
                        If you want pizza midtown, go to lazzarra's
                        221 West 38th Street