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Mar 8, 2010 05:30 AM

Need suggestions for pre-opera dinner for 2

We're new to NYC, new to the opera, (new to it ALL, practically). Any suggestions for places to go pre-opera for dinner. As far as price ranges and cuisines go, we're flexible but Nougatine -like places look like a good try (we've not been there yet, it's just been recommended). Any other suggestions? Also, what time should we be booking to make the opera?

Also, how about afterwards suggestions for drinks/cocktails?

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    1. re: gutsofsteel

      Thanks! Those look like great ideas.

      Nice name, btw.

    2. If you're going somewhere "across the street" like Bar Boulud or Josephina book at 6pm. If it's a longer walk, book 15 minutes earlier - unless you don't mind blowing in at the last minute with a little agita running up the stairs.

      Have not fared well recently at: Fiorello's, the Chowder House, or Shun Lee. Haven't been to O'Neals for a while, but used to like it. All the nearby places are accustomed to getting people out on time to make the curtain.

      At some point you may want to totally splurge and experience the whole dinner at the opera thing and eat at the Grand Tier restaurant in the Met -- assuming you're going there and not NYCO.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Jane A.

        You might think of Telepan too, on 69th off Columbus.

        1. re: emsny

          I second Telepan. My wife and I went a couple of times pre-ballet, and not only was the food as fantastic (though understated) as advertised, but we had the added benefit of sitting a table away from Ethan Stiefel and Julie Kent. So maybe you'll get lucky and run into Renee Fleming.

        2. re: Jane A.

          Yes, our tix are for the Met. Never thought to eat at the Opera itself. fascinating idea!

          Going to ONeals the next day for lunch with a friend. So that's out for now.

          Thanks for posting about times. I thought 6 would be PLENTY of time. Still need to get the tix at the call-box office so we need a few minutes for that.

        3. Hi - I'm an opera buff and try to dine before the curtain call so that my stomach doesn't rumble during the opera. A few places that I've been to and are accomodating to the opera fans are: Cafe Luxemburg, Nick and Toni and there is a steak place on the 2nd fllor of a hotel directly across from Lincoln (the name escapes me). Whatever you do, avoid Landmarc. I almost missed Carmen because of their slow service.

          1 Reply
          1. re: jycnyc

            The "steak place" has become Chowder House - do not recommend it. Also, you could swing by the Met before dinner, pick up the tics, and feel less frenzied after dinner. No need to rush as much. Agree about Landmarc - molasses in winter, on a good day. And, we're at the opera at least 10-12 times a year. Our usual evening go-to place is Josephina. Nice prix fixe. They're used to getting everyone out on time, and it's just across the street and even it wretched weather it's doable. It won't knock your socks off, but then, the main event of the evening is the long sit at the opera anyway.

            My other personal rec is a double espresso around 4 pm so that even after dinner you won't sleep through the first act . . . of course, then there are the nights I wish I could have slept through the first act!