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Visting Manhattan This Weekend & Request Opinons

cpl100 Nov 8, 2011 10:53 AM

My husband and I are attending a wedding in Manhattan Saturday evening (11/12) at the Radisson on Lexington. We are staying there. We hope to arrive in time for a lunch that day and plan to stay and have an early dinner on Sunday prior to leaving.

We are interested in information/advice/tips for the four available meals (Sat. lunch, Sun. breakfast, lunch & dinner). We are not interested in Chinatown. And we'll be in casual travel clothes for those meals so nothing upscale in atmosphere or price. Looking for good deals or moderate prices. We are not big drinkers so that doesn't really play into the situation. Also looking for relatively healthy foods, not pizza, and preferably an option for fresh vegetables with the evening meal. Any good options through Restaurant.com? We don't mind venturing from the area of the hotel, but with limited time we don't want to spend it all cris-crossing the city from one meal to the next. More interested in 'places locals love' than 'touristy places'.

Have not been here for about a decade so we're kind of at a loss about what restaurants to choose and something to do between the meals on Sunday. (For example, are shops open?)

I hope that's specific enough to allow suggestions. Please also state whether or not reservations are recommended/required for the restaurants named. Thanks ever so much for the help!

  1. Motosport Nov 9, 2011 02:14 PM

    If you like Middle Eastern food (healthy and lots of veggies) walk East to Sip Sak or Al Bustan. For an excellent inexpensive breakfast walk down Lexington to Scotty's Diner bet 40th and 39th or a little further to Penelope's on 30th??

    Al Bustan
    319 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022

    159 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016

    Sip Sak
    928 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10022

    Scotty's Diner
    336 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016

    1 Reply
    1. re: Motosport
      cpl100 Nov 11, 2011 04:52 PM

      Thanks. Those breakfast places look good!

    2. k
      kathryn Nov 8, 2011 02:40 PM

      Your hotel is on 48th and Lexington, near Grand Central, yes?

      For Saturday lunch, I would do Soba Totto, as it is pretty close to your hotel.

      For Sunday, most restaurants will be open for brunch service, not separate breakfast and lunch.

      Shops will definitely be open on Sundays.

      For Sunday dinner, it is very hard to say where you should eat without knowing a budget. It's best to give a figure per person before tax and tip.

      Some farm-to-table restaurants at various price points you may enjoy if you like vegetables (reservations recommended for all of them except Northern Spy which is walk-in only):
      Northern Spy Co
      Green Table
      Market Table
      Hundred Acres

      Overall, I find the selection of restaurants on Restaurant.com to be..well, it sucks. We were gifted some restaurant.com dollars a few years ago and couldn't find a place we liked enough to use the gift certificate at all.

      403 East 12th Street, New York, NY 10009

      The Green Table
      75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

      Market Table
      54 Carmine Street, New York, NY 10014

      Soba Totto
      211 E 43rd St, New York, NY 10017

      Hundred Acres
      38 MacDougal St., New York, NY 10012

      Northern Spy Food Co.
      511 E 12th St, New York, NY 10009

      5 Replies
      1. re: kathryn
        cpl100 Nov 9, 2011 08:04 AM

        Hi kathryn, thanks for your help. Yes, the hotel is at 48th & Lexington; less certain if it's 'near Grand Central'. I guess maybe we'll just have some tea and maybe something light (at the hotel? or maybe there's a coffee shop nearby) for breakfast and do brunch after check out.

        We will have our car in the hotel parking (unless someone suggests an alternative) so would need to go back there after dinner to retrieve it and our luggage.

        For dinner I think we'd like to have a range of around $75 each prior to tax & tip (and without liquor as we'll be driving home after that).

        My husband would probably love Soba Totto but unfortunately I do not enjoy much of that type of food. He did mention trying a 'deli' if there's one that could be recommended. We've been to Carnegie Deli years ago so maybe there's another? Meanwhile, I will check out all your restaurant recommendations.

        I guess I should add that my husband is a very adventurous eater and I am definitely NOT an adventurous eater. (bad mix, I know....)

        Carnegie Deli
        854 7th Ave, New York, NY 10019

        Soba Totto
        211 E 43rd St, New York, NY 10017

        1. re: cpl100
          kathryn Nov 9, 2011 08:49 AM

          Saturday lunch:
          I'd choose either Sarge's or 2nd Avenue Deli. Sarge's is on 3rd Avenue between 36th/37th. 2nd Avenue Deli has actually moved to 33rd St, between Lex and 3rd Avenue. Delis are a hotly debated topic here, though, and much depends upon what you order: chicken soup, matzoh ball soup, pastrami, etc.


          Sunday breakfast: I'm not a huge tea drinker, but you can get some quick coffee and pastries inside of Grand Central at Joe the Art of Coffee. There's also Aroma Espresso Bar nearby.
          If you walk west, you'll hit Rockefeller Center, where you'll have a lot of choices for a light breakfast pastry -- Minamoto Kitchen, Bouchon Bakery, Jacques Torres, 'wichcraft.

          Sunday brunch: You might enjoy City Bakery's buffet, which is self-serve, but very high quality, and then you can walk up 5th Avenue and look at the shops there. If you keep going up 5th Avenue, you'll eventually hit Madison Square Park, the Flatiron Building, Shake Shack, and Eataly, which are always popular tourist spots.

          Sunday dinner: if you're OK with business casual dress, I'd grab a 5:30pm table at Craft. They are showing availability on OpenTable right now and you'll do pretty well with your budget of $75pp before tax/tip.

          The menu is very flexible and your adventurous husband can have foie gras, quail, sweetbreads, etc. and you can have items like steak, chicken, etc. Plus, they do great seasonal vegetables.

          Shake Shack
          Madison Ave and E 23rd St, New York, NY 10010

          City Bakery
          3 W 18th St, New York, NY 10011

          Sarge's Delicatessen
          548 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10016

          Second Avenue Deli
          162 E 33rd St, New York, NY 10016

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

          Minamoto Kitchoan
          608 5th Ave, New York, NY 10020

          Joe the Art of Coffee
          89 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017

          1 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10020

          Aroma Espresso Bar
          205 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017

          200 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

          Jacques Torres
          30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10112

          Bouchon Bakery
          1 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10112

          1. re: cpl100
            ManhattanLawyer Nov 9, 2011 05:14 PM

            I prefer Katz's over 2nd Avenue Deli. Something that is inexpensive but unique for lunch would be Num Pang, a Cambodian sandwich shop. The original is near Union Square but there is a new outpost on 41st street between Lex. and 3rd.

            Are you interested in pizza at any point? I recently had a great dinner at a new place called Rubirosa. Outstanding pizzas; was quite impressed with this place. There's also Rouge et Tomate which was just given 2 stars in the Times and is very under-the-radar. I enjoyed my meal there.

            Num Pang Sandwich Shop
            21 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

            Rouge et Blanc
            48 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

            235 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012

            Num Pang Sandwich Shop
            140 E 41st St, New York, NY 10017

            1. re: ManhattanLawyer
              cpl100 Nov 11, 2011 04:59 PM

              Thanks. I will read up on all of them. Won't be having pizza unless hubby decides he needs a slice for a snack.

              1. re: ManhattanLawyer
                Pan Nov 12, 2011 01:11 AM

                Katz's has great pastrami, the best, and the brisket can also be very good if you get it juicy. Their corned beef is fine, too. However, 2nd Av. Deli is better for tongue and also has much more of a full-service menu - good matzo ball soup, kasha varnishkes, and their cole slaw is much better than Katz's. So it really depends on what you want to get. Also, 33rd St. is closer to 48th St. than Houston St. is, if that's part of the equation. I'm not really familiar enough with Sarge's menu (having only been there once so far) to make an overall comparison.

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

                Second Avenue Deli
                162 E 33rd St, New York, NY 10016

          2. s
            sugartoof Nov 8, 2011 12:01 PM

            I wouldn't get weighed down with coupons when you're hear a short time. Usually they come with restrictions, etc.

            Can you give us a better sense of what you consider moderate though? ABC Kitchen comes to mind, but it might be out of your range.

            Dirt Candy is another option. It's a small owner.chef run establishment which is Vegetarian.

            Neither of these are in midtown in the 50's, which is probably the area you'll want if you plan on eating close to the hotel.

            Dirt Candy
            430 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10009

            ABC Kitchen
            35 E 18th St, New York, NY 10003

            2 Replies
            1. re: sugartoof
              kathryn Nov 8, 2011 02:47 PM

              ABC Kitchen would be good for lunch as it's easier to get in then, but I just checked OpenTable.com for dinner, and the only tables left for 2 on Sunday are at 3pm and 10pm.

              ABC Kitchen
              35 E 18th St, New York, NY 10003

              1. re: sugartoof
                cpl100 Nov 8, 2011 03:12 PM

                Thanks for your quick reply sugartoof. I don't think my husband will go for vegetarian. I probably should have also mentioned that I have a shellfish allergy. Sorry about that. I checked out the menu at ABC Kitchen and I would consider that the high side of moderate but doable. We would like to have a breakfast that is less costly, though, and it doesn't have to be a full breakfast. Lunch could be about $60 without tip.

                ABC Kitchen
                35 E 18th St, New York, NY 10003

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