HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >

Upper East Side - Interesting / Noteworthy for dinner?

bokomaru Dec 27, 2011 08:54 PM

I'm meeting my parents for a casual weeknight dinner on the UES for geographic convenience. Anywhere that is particularly good that we should try? Price isn't an issue, but I'm not looking for something fancy or formal. Just a notably good meal. All ethnic foods are fair game. Should be reasonably vegetarian friendly. Thanks!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. f
    foodwhisperer RE: bokomaru Jan 18, 2012 10:16 PM

    It's not fancy, it's not big, it's not gourmet. But San Mateo on 90th and 2nd, has great pizza,( i recommend the potato truffle pizza) and great panuzzo sandwiches, where they bake the roll for your sandwich while you wait. They have other things on the menu as well. I have only been there for lunch, but I know people who have gone there for dinner. Worth checking it out for a casual Italian meal. They have excellent espresso and cappuccino as well.

    San Matteo
    1739 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10128

    4 Replies
    1. re: foodwhisperer
      gutsofsteel RE: foodwhisperer Jan 19, 2012 03:58 AM

      I really like San Mateo. But it can get crowded and close.

      1. re: foodwhisperer
        City Kid RE: foodwhisperer Jan 19, 2012 05:55 PM

        Seriously, I am scratching my head. Just had dinner there and was prepared to love it, but I really don't get it. Meatball app looked scalding hot but was cold in the middle; white pizza with porcini and truffle oil was mushy and undercooked with literally a couple of stray pieces of mushroom; panuzzo with sausage and broccoli rabe was ok but also cold inside. We didn't feel like sending everything back. So disappointed. Next time it's Nick's or Little Luzzo.

        San Matteo
        1739 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10128

        1. re: City Kid
          RCC RE: City Kid Jan 25, 2012 12:02 AM

          Cardboard chewy and tough-to-cut crust was pretty much my experience with the pizza dinner we had a few months ago at San Matteo.
          Our pizza with the supposedly featured ingredient, Parmigiano Reggiano, hardly had Parmigiano Reggiano on it and waitress acknowledged and had to give us a bowl of the cheese to sprinkle on to our pie.

          San Matteo
          1739 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10128

          1. re: RCC
            City Kid RE: RCC Jan 25, 2012 06:51 AM

            Interesting, RCC, I wondered if we were there on an off night judging by some raves I have read. Our experience was not a good one and not cheap given the quantity and quality.

      2. a
        apples RE: bokomaru Jan 19, 2012 11:17 AM

        I like the Mark

        1. h
          haraliyaviner RE: bokomaru Jan 24, 2012 07:14 AM

          Excellent Italian
          1561 2nd Avenue (at 81st Street)
          New York City
          Tel: (212) 744-1100
          HIGHLY RECOMMEND (Reservations suggested


          1561 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028

          1. t
            terasec RE: bokomaru Jan 24, 2012 10:51 PM

            I can't recall the name,
            But on the ues was a really tiny italian restaraunt.
            Only had like 5 tables.
            Was quite good.
            Maybe someone can help with the name
            Think it was in the 80's off of I think 2nd ave north side if the street.
            Bellas? Marias?

            1. u
              UES Mayor RE: bokomaru Jan 25, 2012 04:33 AM

              These are my faves in no particular order:

              Spigolo-inventive Italian-very deelish and not the red sauced type you might associate w Italian.

              Om-great Indian

              Ithaka-Greek w some of the freshest fish around

              Veatery-former Saigon grill-same owner and food

              Cafe D'Alsace-something for everyone-from salads to hearty winter fare.

              1561 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028

              308 E 86th St, New York, NY 10028

              Cafe d'Alsace
              1695 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10128

              1593 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028

              1700 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10128

              1. l
                lexismore RE: bokomaru Jan 25, 2012 07:36 AM

                I'm never sure if "vegetarian-friendly" includes fish/seafood. That being said, some of my favorites in the area are:

                Wa Jeal - Some great Szechuan, although their executions of Americanized dishes are quite good too if not everyone is adventurous.

                Gajyumaru - Traditional Japanese. I find their cooked dishes to be great, and interesting. Not a big fan of their sushi.

                Inase - Traditional Japanese. Focus on sashimi/sushi - I find their $35 sushi set and their $60 "omakase" to be great, and among the best value I've found in the city.

                1586 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

                1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

                Wa Jeal
                1588 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028

                1 Reply
                1. re: lexismore
                  hopegoode RE: lexismore Jan 29, 2012 05:42 PM

                  Thanks to UES Mayor on his rec on Om for Indian food. Brought a bottle of wine over tonight and agree that it is the best neighborhood Indian food we've had in all our years here. We'll take a chance on Veatery as well.

                  Noticed a new Turkish place, Agora, on 80th Street that is also permitting BYOB. Will give that a try and report back.

                Show Hidden Posts