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Sep 29, 2011 12:49 PM

2 Day NYC Tour focusing on eating, please help with suggestions...

Hello, Im travelling to NYC for a short 2 day vacation staying at the Westin New York Hotel(close to Times Square). That being said im looking for places where I can east breakfast, Lunch and Dinner as a regular New Yorker would. Two places per meal would be best since I will stay for the whole weekend.

1. I've heard bagels are a must in NY. H&H?
2. Any other suggestion?

1. Great NY Local Pizza. Not looking for anything fancy, just plain good.
2. Regular chinese food. The tastier the better.

1. Steakhouse. Averaging on 100USD per person.
2. Any other suggestion?

Im also looking for a good comedy bar for one of the nights, maybe one that has great food as well.

Thank you so much for your help,

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  1. For bagels, for me, it's more about the lox on top of them. And for lox, there's nothing better than Russ & Daughters. Uptown, Barney Greengrass for smoked sturgeon. H&H... meh.

    For pizza (in Manhattan) the original Patsy's in East Harlem (accept no fake other Patsy's-es) is my favorite, or John's on Bleeker St - whole pies only at John's though.

    For Chinese.... we have many different regional Chinese styles, here. But probably Cantonese would be what you're looking for.

    Oriental Garden
    - all seafood specialists, hard to go wrong with any. Ping's jicama siu-chow is currently on my list of favorite dishes in NYC, FWIW. As is Fuleen's Preserved Duck & Taro casserole. Oriental Garden is bangin', though, probably the overall seafood in Chinatown.

    South China Garden - best Cantonese for land critters, IMHO.

    For Sichuan, I'm fond of Grand Sichuan. For something more esoteric, Xi'an Famous Foods does Western Chinese, and amazingly good. Also very cheap.

    Many threads on the board regarding Chinatown, though. Do a search, browse around.

    Steakhouse: Keens or Peter Luger. Though if travelling, I can't see going to a steakhouse - you can probably get steak where you're from. I'd go for something more "only in NYC" personally, something with a little chef's creativity.

    Barney Greengrass
    541 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024

    Russ & Daughters
    179 E Houston St, New York, NY 10002

    South China Garden
    22 Elizabeth St, New York, NY 10013

    72 West 36th St., New York, NY 10018

    11 Division St, New York, NY 10002

    Grand Sichuan
    229 9th Ave, New York, NY 10001

    Oriental Garden
    14 Elizabeth St, New York, NY 10013

    22 Mott St, New York, NY 10013

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

    Patsy's Pizzeria
    2287 1st Ave, New York, NY 10035

    Xi'an Famous Foods
    81 St. Marks Pl, New York, NY 10003

    Xi'an Famous Foods
    88 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002

    Xi'an Famous Foods
    67 Bayard St, New York, NY 10013

    3 Replies
    1. re: sgordon

      If you want to do bagels right, they should be topped at Russ & Daughters. However, I much prefer the bagels made at Absolute. You might buy your toppings at R &D and your bagels at Absolute for the perfect breakfast.

      If you go to Keens, the mutton chop is the way to go. but, why not do something more NYC-focused. The Modern, WD-50, and Eleven Madison Park (a bit above your price range) come to mind. You might also consider craft, which makes a great steak, but has other options as well.

      50 Clinton Street, New York, NY 10002

      Russ & Daughters
      179 E Houston St, New York, NY 10002

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

      72 West 36th St., New York, NY 10018

      The Modern
      9 West 53rd Street, New York, NY 10019

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

      Absolute Bagels
      2788 Broadway, New York, NY 10025

      1. re: sgordon

        Thank you so much for your time. I'll be sure to try as much of these as possible. I'll come back with the reviews after my vacations.

        1. re: sgordon

          sgordon, have you tried Szechuan Gourmet? I think it's better than the GSes.

          Szechuan Gourmet
          21 W 39th St, New York, NY 10018

        2. Chinatown/Cantonese:
          Ah-Ping Snack Bar:

          Amazing 66:

          East Corner Wonton:

          Great New York Noodletown:

          Mei Li Wah:

          New Chiu Chow:

          Noodle Village:

          Oriental Garden:

          Ping’s Seafood:

          South China Garden:

          Dim Sum:
          Dim Sum Go Go:

          Red Egg:

          Fujian operated Homemade, Hand-Pulled Noodle spots:

          Best Fuzhou Restaurants: Note the Best Fuzhou one on Forsyth Street has changed hands and is now Henan Flavors.

          Double Dragon:

          Henan Flavor:

          Famous Sichuan:

          Old Sichuan:

          456 - Shanghai:

          Shanghai Café Deluxe

          Xian Famous Foods:

          Outside of Chinatown:

          Szechuan Gourmet:


          Lan Sheng - Sichuanese

          1. Breakfast-
            > 1. I've heard bagels are a must in NY. H&H?

            Best bagels in NYC:

            Summary: the freshest bagels are the best; bagels don't age well at all.

            Otherwise, what sgordon said. I'm more about the smoked salmon these days.

            I'm fond of red onion, capers, regular cream cheese, and tomato on mine. Try a few smoked salmons before you settle on one, they're surprisingly different (and lox is not the same as smoked salmon, because lox is salmon cured in salt brine, and most people actually prefer the more modern, Nova-style smoked salmon). You can get a mini-sized bagel sandwich at Russ & Daughters, too, if you wish. Takeout only.

            Note: NYers don't toast bagels.

            > 2. Any other suggestion?

            Best breakfast/brunch IMO is at the Breslin, Locanda Verde, Shopsin's, Clinton St Baking Co., or Minetta Tavern.

            > Lunch:
            > 1. Great NY Local Pizza. Not looking for anything fancy, just plain good.

            Really, it depends what you're looking for: gas oven style, coal oven style, Naples style? A slice? A pie? Takeout? Sit down? Or is standing up OK with you?

            There are a few distinct styles of round pizza found in NYC: New York gas-oven style, Neopolitan style, and a hybrid style of the two that is also unique to New York (usually coal oven). Then to throw another wrench into things, some places are known more for square pies (like Artichoke).

            Note that lot of famous places like John's of Bleecker, Grimaldi's, and Lombardi's are pies only. Hard to make a recommendation without knowing what you're looking for: whole pies or slices, gas oven vs. coal oven.

            If you are limiting yourself to only Manhattan, my favorites, agnostic of oven type:

            John's of Bleecker, if you ask for it well done. Get it plain or with one topping, max. I'm partial to their green peppers. This is classic coal-fired NY-Neopolitan hybrid style pie. They do sometimes undercook/under char it, though. Whole pies only.

            Motorino for Naples style. Delicious but not really historically "New York" style. Crimini and sausage, spicy soppressata, or whatever their special pie is. Wonderful crust, quality toppings. Whole pies only.

            For both you may have to wait in line. I have also enjoyed Patsy's in East Harlem (coal oven) in the past but it is a bit far uptown dependent upon where you are starting from, and I've not been very recently. Whole pies OR slices if you want.

            South Brooklyn Pizza or Joe's for a slice (gas oven). Joe's is a bit less crisp/more chewy and on the more cheesy sied and has a more uniform appearance. South Brooklyn is more crispy and has an interesting cheese blend (mozzarella, grana padano, and fontina) with fresh basil, and the cheese and sauce are more scattered, which you usually don't see at slice joints.

            > 2. Regular chinese food. The tastier the better.

            What is "regular Chinese food" to you? NYC has a plethora of styles. Sichuan, Henan, Cantonese, Fujian...


            > 2. Any other suggestion?

            Where are you from? What cuisines are hard to find in your hometown?

            How much can you spend (the sky's really the limit here)?

            When are you going to be in town (will definitely influence ability to get a reservation)?

            Here is my list of what I consider to be 'unique' to NYC.

            Much will depend upon your budget, if you can afford, say WD-50 or Takashi, vs. Zabb Elee or Xi'an Famous Foods.

            > Im also looking for a good comedy bar for one of the nights, maybe one that has great food as well.

            Go to UCB Theatre and get dinner in the neighborhood before or afterwards. I don't think you'll find great food at a comedy club.

            50 Clinton Street, New York, NY 10002

            Russ & Daughters
            179 E Houston St, New York, NY 10002

            Minetta Tavern
            113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

            Locanda Verde
            377 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013

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

            Xi'an Famous Foods
            88 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002

            349 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

            47 W 20th St, New York, NY 10010

            Zabb Elee
            75 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

            Percy's Pizza
            190 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10012