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Jun 23, 2010 04:49 PM

anniversary trip - 4 nights, where to eat?

We will be coming to New York in late August to celebrate our 10 year wedding anniversary. I am looking for some recommendations on where we should eat. Planning for two or three nicer dinners (one of those being our anniversary night). We are in our mid 30's, professionals. We are looking for places with good atmosphere and good food, nothing stuffy or pretentious.

For anniversary dinner looking for mains prices up to $40. For other 1-2 nights looking for mains priced around $20-30 (less is perfectly fine too!). That price is just for entree's (not including appies/dessert/drinks/tax/tip etc). We tend to eat a lot of asian (chinese/japanese/sushi etc). So are looking for things that we may not get on the west coast.

ALSO dietary restriction: I eat fish/seafood but no other meat (ie not port/chicken/red meat). My husband eats anything. We like all kinds of food especially ethnic and ethnic/fusion.

Some places I'm considering are: Gramercy Tavern, Babbo, Perilla, SD26, Colicchio & Sons, Scarpetta, Balthazar, Locanda Verde, The Little Owl, Tabla, Otto, Craft/Craftbar, Pastis, Spice Market, Market Table

Any thoughts on these? Any recommended or should be missed? Other suggestions?


9 Jones Street, New York, NY 10014

Gramercy Tavern
42 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003

110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

Little Owl
90 Bedford Street, New York, NY 10014

Market Table
54 Carmine Street, New York, NY 10014

Spice Market
403 West 13th Street, New York, NY 10014

355 West 14th Street, New York, NY 10014

Locanda Verde
377 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013

19 East 26th Street, New York, NY 10010

Colicchio & Sons
85 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011

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  1. I live in SF and have lived in LA, and when I visited NYC I liked but did not LOVE Babbo. I wanted to, because I liked Mozza, but it wasn't different enough for me to be worth what some may consider almost a pilgrimage. That's not to say it's not delicious; it just wasn't something I'd repeat given how many wonderful Italian places there are on the West Coast serving similar food.

    What I did love was Chikalicious and any of the Momofuku restaurants. We don't have places out here quite like either.

    110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

    4 Replies
    1. re: Pei

      Chikalicious looks really good. For Momofuku: is it like izakaya fusion or is it different? Also would Momofuku be suitable for someone not eating meat?

      1. re: seastar_74

        I went to Momofuku noodle bar, which was small plates with a fusion influence. Especially memorable were the hamachi with pickled watermelon and deep fried sweetbreads.

        Their most famous items are ramen and pork buns, so , I can't say that I would take a vegetarian there. Sorry!

        1. re: seastar_74

          Momofuku is notoriously difficult for vegetarians. In the past there were no vegetarian options but these days there is usually one or two options but it is not a place I would bring a non meat eater.

          1. re: seastar_74

            Momofuku has several restaurants in the empire. Noodle Bar, Ssam Bar, Milk Bar (takeout/no seating/dessert focused), Ko (high end, notoriously difficult to reserve), and Ma Peche.

            If you eat fish and shellfish but not pork, chicken, or beef, you should be able to put together a meal from a few options on the menu at Momofuku Ssam Bar (14 non meat dishes) or Ma Peche (12 non meat dishes). Momofuku Noodle Bar's menu is MUCH smaller in comparison (5 non meat dishes right now) if you subtract the meat options. They don't do substitutions or modifications to the dishes typically.

            See menus here:

            Momofuku Ssam Bar
            207 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

            Momofuku Noodle Bar
            171 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003

            Ma Peche
            15 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019

        2. Skip Pastis, Spice Market, and maybe just do Balthazar for breakfast.

          I love Perilla and The Little Owl but just do one or the other since they are quite similar.

          Otto is tons of fun though there's better pizza places in the city, if that's what you are looking for. I'd go for Babbo or Lupa if you are looking to try one of Batali's places.

          Gramercy Tavern is good but I tend to prefer eating in the more casual bar room than the main restaurant. I'd do Eleven Madison Park instead if you were picking that as your "fancy" dinner.

          1. Choose Eleven Madison Park for your anniversary night dinner, for sure. It's wonderful.

            I love Craft for dinner too. Gramercy Tavern front room and Craftbar are both great lunch options. Balthazar for breakfast. Otto is a lot of fun for small plates and terrific wines. I'm not a fan of Babbo. For Italian, I'd recommend Maialino.

            Eleven Madison Park
            11 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10010

            Gramercy Tavern
            42 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003

            110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

            2 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10010