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I have eaten in Manhattan before but now I want to do it right.

Greetings to all,
I have been to Manhattan several times before, I have eaten at the some of the typical restaurants that I am sure you all have been to. I will be in the city for three and a half days and I would like your opinions of must do restaurants. Looking for exciting, unpretentious, great chef and will make me want to go back again the next day. The last time I went to the city I a came across Caracas Arepa Bar and that is now a staple for me. I am reading a lot on this site about Craft, Momofuka, and the Batali restaurants keep popping up. I was told by a friend that lives in the city to go Keste, Shorty 32, Blue Ribbon and Strip House. Price is not really a huge factor as long as it is well worth it. I am staying near Penn Station but I am willing to go wherever, whenever. I enjoy the process of getting there. Haha. I would love to here your recommendations.
Thank you and Regards.......

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  1. Where have you eaten before? I'm not sure what you mean by the typical restaurants. You'll have to be more specific with names.

    When are you coming? Reservations may be an issue, or are you OK with waiting? I assume you'll be dining alone? Is the bar OK?

    Your request for unpretentious, chef-driven places plus your liking of Caracas reads to me like you might like places like Prune, Degustation, The Redhead, Kyo Ya, Aldea, Perilla, Kin Shop, Po. Not so much the bigger or glitzier places. I like all the places you mentioned--it just depends what you're looking for.

    Keste is good but I like Motorino better. I like Blue Ribbon a lot, but I don't know if it's worthy of a three day trip.

    -----
    Perilla
    9 Jones Street, New York, NY 10014

    Po
    31 Cornelia St, New York, NY 10014

    Degustation
    239 E 5th St, New York, NY 10003

    Blue Ribbon Brasserie
    97 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012

    Kyo Ya
    94 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

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

    The Redhead
    349 E 13th St, New York, NY 10003

    Keste Pizza & Vino
    271 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

    Aldea
    31 West 17th Street, New York, NY 10011

    Motorino
    349 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

    Kin Shop
    469 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011

    4 Replies
    1. re: kathryn

      Thank you for your reply. I am sorry I was not that thorough. I have been to Mesa Grill, Keen's, Katz's Deli, John's Pizza, Caracas Arepa Bar and Crispo. I will be with a guest sometimes. I will be there at the end of June. I like to say I am very patient so I am o.k with waiting. I will look at the places you have suggested. I am truly open to anything.

      -----
      Crispo
      240 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011

      Caracas Arepa Bar
      93 1/2 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

      Mesa Grill
      102 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10011

      1. re: jwenz01

        Are you an adventurous eater? Maybe you'd like the oysters at John Dory or the porky dishes at the Breslin, which isn't too far from Penn Station?

        Any particular foods/cuisines you want during your trip?

        BTW if you liked Caracas, check out the Red Hook Ballfields if your trip is over a weekend.

        -----
        The Breslin
        20 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001

        The John Dory Oyster Bar
        1196 Broadway, New York, NY 10001

        1. re: kathryn

          I like to think that I am an adventurous eater but I need some advancement for sure. I love Thai, Latin but I don't have to have them, I just want something memorable.

      2. re: kathryn

        I would tell you to sit at the bar at Hearth if you are dining alone.. I would tell you to sit at the bar at Casa Mono if you are dining alone or sit at the bar at Babbo.. I really enjoy these places a lot.

        -----
        Babbo
        110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

        Casa Mono
        52 Irving Place, New York, NY 10003

        Hearth
        403 East 12th Street, New York, NY 10009

      3. I think your friend steered you pretty well. I'll second Keste, and Strip House.

        A little more direction would help, unless you just want the typical generic suggestions, in which case, it sounds like you've been browsing the board already.

        -----
        Strip House
        13 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

        7 Replies
        1. re: sugartoof

          I know the ?s can be off-putting, but with many 1000s of restaurants just in Manhattan, it really helps us help.
          About the restaurants you've been to -- a nice range BTW ---- Mesa Grill, Keen's, Katz's Deli, John's Pizza, Caracas Arepa Bar and Crispo -- was Caracas Arepa Bar the only one you really liked, or if others, which?
          I promise to contribute a suggetin after this!

          -----
          Katz's Delicatessen
          205 E Houston St, New York, NY 10002

          Crispo
          240 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011

          Caracas Arepa Bar
          93 1/2 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

          Mesa Grill
          102 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10011

          John's Pizzeria
          278 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

          1. re: yebo

            I don't mind the questions. Caracas was just the most memorable to me. I am from South Florida so we have a fair share of nice restaurants, deli's and pizza. I know Manhattan is the mecca for food and I just would like to be included and enjoy. Thank you for you response. I guess I would like to know, if you were taking a friend who has never been to to the city and they were very open minded to where you took them, where would you go?

          2. re: sugartoof

            By the responses so far he did give good suggestions, so I can still be friends with him, haha. I wish that I could be in more detail about what I want. I will go anywhere that is great. I have spent a few days browsing, I am trying to narrow it to at least 5, must do's.....

            1. re: sugartoof

              By the responses so far he did give good suggestions, so I can still be friends with him, haha. I wish that I could be in more detail about what I want. I will go anywhere that is great. I have spent a few days browsing, I am trying to narrow it to at least 5, must do's.....

              1. re: jwenz01

                Thank you all for your input. I have done a lot of research and have planned my trip out. I will be starting out on Sunday lunch at the Redhook ball fields and then Spumoni Gardens for Spumoni and then Keste pizza for dinner. Monday, Momofuku Ssam Bar for lunch and Joeseph Leonard for dinner. Tuesday, Aldea for lunch and Caracas Arepa Bar for dinner. Wednesday, Marea for lunch. Breakfast will consist of Bagels from H&H and Bialys from Kosar's. We do have fillers, such as Shake Shack, Currywurst Bros, Doughnut Plant, Amy's Bread etc.etc.....
                Regards

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

                Caracas Arepa Bar
                93 1/2 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

                Amy's Bread
                250 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

                Marea
                240 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019

                Aldea
                31 West 17th Street, New York, NY 10011

                Doughnut Plant
                220 W 23rd St, New York, NY 10011

                Currywurst Bros.
                182 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10012

                1. re: jwenz01

                  FYI Ssam Bar's weekday lunch service recently instituted an all duck menu. Hope you pile duck!

                  1. re: kathryn

                    Yes, I noticed that and we are looking forward to it. kathryn, I have been on this site frequently since my original post and I must compliment you on your knowledge and efforts on keeping up with the posts. Oh.....and your photograghy isn't bad either, haha.