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Ex-NYer West Coast Foodie would like some opinions

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I grew up in NY and have been on the west coast for 39 years. I get back to the city about once/year and walk till I drop, always on the lookout for hidden gems and places I haven't tried before. This next week I've got 4 days and 4 evenings to fill with breathing in NY and eating great food. I'll go to any neighborhood if the incentive is strong enough. I've got a reservation one night at Jane and can't decide on the next night btw Artisanal, Buddakan, and Gradisca. Would love some opinions. I'm not into swank and ridiculously high end places. I want to enjoy some fantastic food and that could be from a truck or great pizza, ethnic fare, burgers, anything.

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Buddakan
75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Artisanal
2 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10016

Gradisca
126 W 13th St, New York, NY 10011

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  1. I would not bother with any of the places you have listed. None of them have fantastic food. Buddakan is a big tourist trap joke, for example. If you love cheese, have cheese and wine at Artisanal but don't do a whole meal there.

    Perhaps you should give us a sense of budget, how many people are in the group....for example there are lots of places that you already won't be able to get reservations for, since this is next week you're talking about.

    Have you read through the many CH threads with similar requests - maybe you can do some reading here and come back with some narrowed down questions....there are thousands of restaurants in NYC...your request as it stands is too broad.

    There are dozens of threads here on CH discussing pizza and burgers...take a look.

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    Buddakan
    75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

    1. yeah, your choices are mediocre. jane is a place i personally loathe for their brunch crowd.

      some alternatives given your interest:

      - instead of jane, try prune. prune is inventive american cuisine...very comfortable albeit small room, solid service. sort of a neighborhood spot meets serious food.

      - instead of gradisca, try da andrea. inexpensive and solid italian. homemade pastas, excellent service. for something a bit more upscale in the area, i really enjoy spasso though the service is pretty amateurish. dell'anima has a similar style of italian with better service but i find myself bored with their menu lately.

      instead of buddakan, try ushiwakamaru. hardcore sushi, not too rough on the wallet. very comfortable place for a meal.

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      Jane
      100 West Houston Street, New York, NY 10012

      Da Andrea
      35 W 13th St, New York, NY 10011

      Ushiwakamaru
      136 W Houston St, New York, NY 10012

      Dell'Anima
      38 8th Avenue, New York, NY 10003

      Prune
      54 E 1st St, New York, NY 10003

      Spasso
      551 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014