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Recs for a Man-Dinner

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Dining with a former co-worker and good friend. We've both eaten at most of the popular places in NYC and have what I'd say are "good palates". Here is my criteria:

- No steakhouses or sushi
- Midtown and below
- Price insensitive although not looking for "special occasion" prices
- Lively / trendy scene a plus, but not looking for a pseudo nightclub scene (i.e., STK)
- Generous portions are a plus given that it's a relatively late reservation

Thanks in advance.

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STK
26 Little West 12th St, New York, NY 10014

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  1. It would be helpful to tell us which restaurants you have enjoyed, so we could base recommendations on your likes, but not repeat places you've already been to. Also a specific dollar limit would be useful.

    2 Replies
    1. re: rrems

      I've been to pretty much every obvious choice in Manhattan and Brooklyn, but usually with my wife or for business. My buddy is younger (think mentee), single, has been to fewer places than I have although well-traveled within NYC and I think he'd appreciate a more lively venue than those I typically frequent with my wife on our date nights.

      Places that I've been to that would generally fit the profile of what I'm looking for are Kingswood or Abe & Arthurs, although the latter is probably more of a "scene" than I'm looking for. Right now, I have a reservation for Craft. I enjoyed my first and only trip there many years ago, recently visited the one in Atlanta and had a very good meal there and thought I'd revisit the flagship. Hopefully this gives you some insight as to the price point and ambiance that I have in mind.

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      Kingswood
      121 West 10th Street, New York, NY 10011

      Abe & Arthur's
      409 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011

      1. re: chewbie

        How about Azul in the Lower East Side? Lively Argentine place with killer mixed grill platters that include steak, chicken, lamb, chorizo, blood sausage. A great place for a man-feast! Just enough of a scene. Not too much.

        Please don't go to Morandi. Over-priced and mediocre.

    2. Momofuko? Fatty Crab?
      JeremyEG
      homecooklocavore.com

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      Fatty Crab
      643 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014

      3 Replies
      1. re: JeremyEG

        I was actually thinking about Fatty 'Cue but Brooklyn may be a trek for him. I live there so no issue. Is Fatty Crab worth it?

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        Fatty Crab
        643 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014

        1. re: chewbie

          Pastis?

          1. re: chewbie

            A friend who's been to Fatty Cue complained about portion sizes. If you're looking for generous portions, it may not be the best place.

            Both Minetta and DBGB sound pretty damn "manly" to me.

        2. Maybe DBGB?

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          DBGB
          299 Bowery, New York, NY 10003

          2 Replies
          1. re: kiworan79

            DBGB is a great option. It's a tough last minute reservation, but I've had very good luck getting one of the first-come-first-served tables in the lounge.

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            DBGB
            299 Bowery, New York, NY 10003

            1. re: kiworan79

              DBGB is a great suggestion. It's also where we had dinner last time we met up. But you've accurately nailed down pretty much what I'm looking for. Now I just need a place that we haven't been to before.

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              DBGB
              299 Bowery, New York, NY 10003

            2. Minetta Tavern (if you can get in)?

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              Minetta Tavern
              113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

              1 Reply
              1. re: kathryn

                ... which you can't.

              2. I'm thinking Morandi.

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                Morandi
                211 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10014

                1. Thanks everyone for the feedback. We couldn't get Minetta at a time that worked for us so I'm either going to keep my reservation at Craft or try Azul. Really appreciate it.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: chewbie

                    Craft is grand.

                    1. re: steakrules85

                      Agreed. I really like Craft.

                  2. Kept the reservation at Craft for tonight. I will be sure to report back on how it was. Thanks again.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: chewbie

                      Please do. While my guy friends tend to be pickier eaters, my wife has wanted to eat at Craft for a long time. : ) Look forward to hearing back!
                      JeremyEG
                      homecooklocavore.com

                    2. So I got cold feet about going to Craft given the abundance of negative reviews I've been reading and was able to score a late res at EMP. Had the Gourmand and it was great. Did wines with every 2-3 courses and am still feeling the effects. We replaced the veal with the duck and, while I've never had the veal, I'm really happy I had the duck. It was probably the best duck I've ever eaten in my life. The entire meal was top notch - even better than my first visit. The nova scotia lobster and heirloom tomato w/ mozzarella ice cream were wonderful. As was the cod cheek dish. The only dish that I didn't care for was the poisson. Had to skip the cheese course b/c we were so full.