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Campbell Apartment then dinner?

My brother is turning 22, still in college, but he's a sharp dresser and wants to go somewhere for his b-day where he can wear a nice suit and not feel out of place. I was thinking The Campbell Apartment for drinks but am welcome to other suggestions. I don't care about the price of the cocktails but the atmosphere has to be very corporate, suit-like. Any location would work....I'm in Union SQ and willing to travel up to Midtown or downtown.

Due to my somewhat limited budget we'd need something much more low-key and inexpensive for dinner. Any sort of hole in the wall burger, pizza, Italian place would do. Dinner should be under $100 total for two.

Alternatively if we could go to a nice restaurant that has that suit vibe, good cocktails and good food (perhaps even eat at the bar) then I'd be open to that as well.

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Campbell Apartment
89 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017

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  1. What will you be wearing? Will you be similarly dressed up?

    For dinner, $50pp -- does that include tax, tip, and any wine/beer/cocktails? If you're talking $50pp before tax and tip, you might not need to do a real hole in the wall for dinner.

    How about Oyster Bar in Grand Central afterwards?

    Some ideas for mixology / artisanal cocktails in Midtown / Uptown:

    Lamb's Club's bar -- but pricey!
    http://newyork.grubstreet.com/2010/08...

    Bar 44 at the Royalton Hotel
    http://offthepresses.blogspot.com/201...

    Bar in the Cellar at the Andaz Hotel
    http://newyork.grubstreet.com/2010/09...

    Ma Peche's bar -- you shouldn't feel out of place in the main dining room in a suit either
    http://www.momofuku.com/ma-peche/beve...

    Campbell Apartment - do note that a dress code is enforced... in case you weren't sure what you should be wearing
    http://www.hospitalityholdings.com/

    Maybe drinks at at old school New York hotel like the Algonquin, Oak Room in the Plaza, King Cole Bar in the St Regis, Bemelman's in the Carlyle, bar inside the Waldorf Astoria, etc.?
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/750840

    Bar Room at the Modern restaurant -- good cocktails, good food, but may bring you over budget, but I love the vibe there
    http://www.themodernnyc.com/

    The bar at Eleven Madison Park - very talented bar tenders there and one of the best restaurants in town, they do serve a separate bar menu (a la carte) in the bar area for dinner but it's not online
    http://www.elevenmadisonpark.com/

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

    Campbell Apartment
    89 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017

    King Cole Bar
    2 E 55th St, New York, NY 10022

    Bemelmans Bar
    35 E 76th St, New York, NY 10021

    Oak Room
    59 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036

    Andaz
    1378 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10021

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

    4 Replies
    1. re: kathryn

      Dress code at Campbell Apt.? I stop by there several times a month when i miss a train, and I am usually in shorts and Hawaiian shirt in summer, and jeans and button down in winter. i have never been approached by staff about dress. Also, the cocktails aren't that great. My friend is the cocktail director for the group that owns the campbell apt., but he can never get very good bartenders there. They actually shake all cocktails, I have never seen one stirred.

      1. re: JMF

        I believe there's a no sneaker policy, that caused some controversy online:
        http://ny.eater.com/archives/2008/10/...

        I think the cocktails there are only OK, if a little sweet, but it's Midtown and I take what I can get when I have to go up there! :) I imagine the great bartenders don't want to work there because too many people order vodka sodas, etc.

        1. re: kathryn

          Well, I've worn sneakers there many times.

      2. re: kathryn

        that's a pretty good list for dressier cocktail bars. I second Bar 44, Lambs Club, Eleven Madison.

      3. For dinner, you might consider going just down the block from the Campbell Apartment to La Fonda de Sol. The food is excellent. They have a bar/lounge with a menu that focuses on tapas. However, they are continuing to do Restaurant Week dinner Mon.-Fri., until Feb. 28. So, if you are celebrating on any of those days, you could eat in the really attractive and comfortable dining room, which is where we ate. Also, acc. to their website, they are doing One-Pot Meals @ $29 between Feb. 15 and March 30.

        La Fonda del Sol photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/11863391...

        http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

        1. check out Cellar Bar in the Bryant Park Hotel as well. Always a good happy hour crowd. There is a restaurant, Koi, but I havent had great experiences there and its not a great value for what you get.

          http://bryantparkhotel.com/Modem/mode...

          The Library Hotel has a rooftop bar that is pretty corporate too.

          http://www.libraryhotel.com/dining/

          For dinner, Blue Smoke, Chiam, Chin Chin, all are somewhat nearby and offer better value for that price point.

          Le Relais D'Venise on 52nd and Lex is awesome and inexpensive for what you get ($24/person for steak, $22 per bottle of wine) and has free wine in February on Mondays. That would be my recommendation.

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          Blue Smoke
          116 East 27th Street, New York, NY 10016

          Chin Chin
          216 E 49th St, New York, NY 10017

          Koi
          40 West 40th Street, New York, NY 10018

          1. Thanks for all of the recommendations. Any suggestions for a sushi place with a nice atmosphere where we can manage to stay under $100 total maybe with a cocktail or two? Midtown or downtown would be fine.

            4 Replies
            1. re: ukitali

              Nigiri sushi or maki sushi (rolls)? Will you want to be sitting at the sushi bar?

              $100 for two plus two cocktails before tax and tip? Or after? If it's after tax and tip, that gives you about $40 for sushi and 1 cocktail, which will be more like $28pp if the cocktail is $12. That much won't really go that far in terms of a nice sushi meal.

              1. re: ukitali

                Hatsuhana (on 48th between madison and 5th) has a prix fixe sushi dinner that is $27, soup or salad, 6 pieces nigiri, 2 rolls and dessert. Its not a ton of food, but its really good-they might let you add an appetizer. Otherwise you could each do one appetizer and sushi deluxe for less than $50 without drinks, tax or tip. This is my go to spot when I do not want to pay for a proper omakase.

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                Hatsuhana
                17 E 48th St, New York, NY 10017

                1. re: AdamD

                  Hatsuhana looks like a good option. We're not big eaters so sharing a few pieces of Nigiri and a couple Maki rolls would be perfect. We're ok with sitting at a bar or table. $100-120 including tax and tip is my limit.

                  I live downtown but have yet to try many of the Japanese places around there so anything in the East Village neighborhood as well as MIdtown would work.

                  1. re: ukitali

                    In addition to Hatsuhana, you can get reasonable "set" meals at Kanoyama (they don't take reservations on Fri/Sat nights though), Shimizu, Sushi Azabu (definitely reserve here, it's a small place).

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                    Shimizu
                    318 W 51st St, New York, NY 10019

                    Hatsuhana
                    17 E 48th St, New York, NY 10017

                    Kanoyama
                    175 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

                    Sushi Azabu
                    428 Greenwich St (basement), New York, NY 10013

              2. I know you said you don't care about the price of the cocktails, but the Campbell Apartment sure is a rip-off. And the service stinks too...

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                Campbell Apartment
                89 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017

                3 Replies
                  1. re: ukitali

                    Well, the king cole bar at the st. regis is about as corporate an environment you will find. But it attracts and older crowd and the drinks are $20+ EACH. Its a real treat to sit in that room and have a drink. But its a total rip off like many hotel bars.

                    Bar 44 mentioned above is also good, but a more modern environment.
                    Maybe the monkey bar, but I have not been there since it reopened.
                    World bar over near the UN.

                    Im more of a bill's nineties type of guy.

                    1. re: ukitali

                      There are plenty of good suggestions on the thread, but I confirm that you should avoid Campbell Apartments which is just a zoo.

                      One off-the-wall idea - if you are both dressed up and it's a special occasion, the 21 Club.

                  2. I think your best bet would be go to the bar at Eleven Madison for cocktails and bar food. The bar food is amazing, and the cocktails are as well. My friend Leo Robitschek is bar manager there and he does a fantastic job with the bar staff, and the cocktails. Very dressy, elegant place and crowd.