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Bar Americain v. Craft

Friends coming to town would like to try Bobby Flay or Tom Colicchio.

Bar Americain, which I've been to, feels very New Yorky to me in the best way -- fun and festive and bold. Craft is supposedly a "better" restaurant but I haven't been -- I found Colicchio & Sons delicious but somewhat mannered and quiet.

I would try Craft for the novelty alone, but I'm reluctant to take a chance when I am confident BA will satisfy our visitor.

I am looking for an answer on the order of "they're both good, it depends on what vibe you're looking for" or "Craft is fantastic, you're an idiot not to go there."

thoughts? thanks to all -

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Bar Americain
152 W. 52nd Street, New York, NY 10019

Craft
43 E. 19th St., New York, NY 10003

Colicchio & Sons
85 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011

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  1. Craft is significantly better, in pretty much every way, than Bar Americain. (One thing sifton's recent review missed was how great their cocktail program is.)

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    Bar Americain
    152 W. 52nd Street, New York, NY 10019

    Craft
    43 E. 19th St., New York, NY 10003

    1. Craft is fantastic, you're an idiot not to go there.

      Though it does have a much more "mannered" atmosphere than Bar Americain.

      1. I consider Bar Americain, a tourist trap.

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        Bar Americain
        152 W. 52nd Street, New York, NY 10019

        1. Craft.
          Not even close.
          Completely different league.

          1. I like Craft but it might not be what you're looking for, especially given your impressions of Colicchio and Sons. The food is very plain and and the bill can add up with all the sides and extras. Why not have a quick meal at the bar and see whether you like it better than Bar Americain?

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            Bar Americain
            152 W. 52nd Street, New York, NY 10019