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Grand Central or Times Square - special occasion but not too fancy dress

s
sbg Nov 5, 2010 01:39 PM

we can spend @ $50-60 pp and need a place with good vegetarian as well as meat or fish options for a Saturday night for family with teenagers who don't really dress up very much - should be festive but not too loud
thanks!

  1. r
    RCC Nov 5, 2010 03:00 PM

    Fabio Piccolo Fiore on 44th between 2nd and 3rd Avenue. Good southern Italian and the chef always has a few specials-of-the-day very good surprises.
    Your budget fits and you won't leave hungry.

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    Fabio Piccolo Fiore
    230 E. 44th Street, New York, NY 10017

    1. Motosport Nov 5, 2010 01:52 PM

      Rare on 37th and Lex,
      Mapo Tofu 39th and Lex or
      El Rio Grande 38th and 3rd
      are both a short stroll from Grand Central

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      El Rio Grande
      160 East 38th Street, New York, NY 10016

      Mapo Tofu
      338 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016

      5 Replies
      1. re: Motosport
        s
        sbg Nov 5, 2010 02:06 PM

        should have specified that neither Chinese nor Mexican would work.
        Prefer Italian or other European or inventive American, if possible.

        1. re: sbg
          Motosport Nov 5, 2010 02:25 PM

          You might want to check out Rossini's on 38th bet Lex and Park. Great Southern Italian I.M.H.O. You may need reservations.

          FYI: Very few restaurants in Manhattan require "fancy" attire.

          1. re: sbg
            financialdistrictresident Nov 5, 2010 02:29 PM

            Convivio? In Tudor City not far from GCT.

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            Convivio
            45 Tudor City Place, New York, NY 10017

            1. re: sbg
              b
              Bloombee Nov 5, 2010 02:56 PM

              Not sure what your special occasion is so these may not be special enough, but some places we have enjoyed that are in the right location and within budget:

              If you prefer west side, consider Marseilles for Mediterranean (www.marseillesnyc.com

              )

              If you prefer east side, consider Cibo for Italian (with the caveat that I have not been in the last 2 years so you may want to search more recent reviews) (www.cibonyc.com

              )

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              Cibo
              767 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017

              1. re: Bloombee
                o
                orthorunner Nov 6, 2010 12:42 AM

                Esca may work, though it is on the edge of the Times Square area. Marseille, as mentioned above, is another potential option.

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                Esca
                402 West 43rd Street, New York, NY 10036

          2. k
            kathryn Nov 5, 2010 01:52 PM

            Is the $60pp before or after tax and tip? What about drinks for the adults? How many people will you have in total?

            4 Replies
            1. re: kathryn
              s
              sbg Nov 5, 2010 02:02 PM

              We'll be 5 and would like to spend @ $300 max, including tax but not tip, I guess. Adults are not big drinkers - a bottle of wine should do it.

              1. re: sbg
                k
                kathryn Nov 5, 2010 02:24 PM

                The Bar Room at the Modern has some people who aren't super dressed up but has a nice atmosphere that's appropriate for a special occasion, although you'll have to decide if it's too adult or not for your teens. It's rustic Alsatian small plates (there are a few but not a ton of vegetarian choices -- I might call to ask how they could accommodate the vegetarians). The savory "half size" plates are around $15-20 each (I find two sufficient to be satisfied if you order carefully). Desserts are $10-12. Official dress code is "casual elegant."

                http://www.google.com/images?q=bar+room+at+the+modern
                http://www.themodernnyc.com/#/menus

                1. re: kathryn
                  j
                  Jane A. Nov 5, 2010 03:15 PM

                  "Half size" plates will have the teenagers asking for pizza less than an hour after they leave the restaurant. You definitely want a place with decent size portions.

                  1. re: Jane A.
                    r
                    RCC Nov 5, 2010 03:19 PM

                    Agree. The portions at Bar Room are not what I'd think teens would be satisfied with ... unless I have a bigger budget than stipulated by the OP.

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