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Dec 30, 2011 06:13 AM


Hey all, I am curious which restaurants have the best specials. Also, probably worth mentioning places that you've encountered bad specials. Sorry if there's a post like that already out there, I didn't see it. Also, I am more curious about specials which are not set to occur each week (for example, not asking about the specials at Lupa, which are printed on the menu and change by day of the week.) When the waiter describes them, they often sound good, but I've been disappointed enough that I rarely order them, although on occasion we'll find a gem. For example, at Il Tinello, we had a favorite all time dish which was a special: it was a veal shank topped with prosciutto and mozz - delicious. Thanks and happy new year!

Il Tinello
16 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019

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  1. Interesting post. I often worry about specials, I wonder if it is truly a special or something they are trying to get rid of. So , I like your post. I have had good specials at Gigino in tribeca. I have had good Filipino style fish special at Maharlika, Ive had good specials at Bar Pitti. At Aglio and Greenwich Grill the fish of the day is always good( i know it's not really a special). When Osteria Morini makes lasagna it is super special, i have only seen it there twice. I still feel most places have specials to get rid of stuff that is getting old, so unless i hear otherwise , on specific restaurants. I am wary of specials.
    I have come to like responding to posts with 0 replies. So many posts go unnoticed that are interesting.

    Bar Pitti
    268 6th Ave, New York, NY 10014

    323 Greenwich Street, New York, NY 10013

    Greenwich Grill
    428 Greenwich Street, New York, NY 10013

    Osteria Morini
    218 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012

    111 First Ave, New York, NY 10003

    Ristorante Aglio
    277 Church St, New York, NY 10013

    1 Reply
    1. re: foodwhisperer

      Very interesting. Would love to hear from CHers in the industry about the "truly special" or "something they are trying to get rid of" question. I've always wondered myself.

      Admittedly, when I saw the title of the thread I thought it was about the fat hot dogs known as "specials"!

    2. Something perhaps a bit different from what you may be expecting: Szechuan Gourmet at 56th St. has had some very good specials. A braised oxtail dish, for example, was delicious.

      Szechuan Gourmet
      244 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019

      1. Last night I tried two specials at Crispo - stuffed zucchini blossoms and pappardelle with wild mushrooms. Both were quite good.

        240 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011

        1 Reply
        1. re: H Manning

          Those are both "regular specials."

        2. Just my two cents...I only order specials when they are an extension of the menu rather than additions to an already long menu. I am always suspect of specials in a place that has a lot of items on the menu to begin with. Why the need for a specials?

          Of course now that I am asked to name places with good specials, I can't think of one. Performance anxiety I guess. :)

          1. Minetta Tavern
            Motorino (rotating specials that are fairly consistent)
            Tertulia (especially since it is often based on special imported seafood items)
            Kanoyama (whatever they have in from Japan)
            Kyo Ya (same)

            Minetta Tavern
            113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

            175 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

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

            240 9th Ave, New York, NY 10001

            349 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003

            359 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011

            5 Replies
            1. re: kathryn

              Just curious, besides percebes, what are the other imported seafood items that Tertulia might offer, or that you've had, as a special?

              1. re: erica

                IIRC sort of baby octopus and fish flown in from France, check their Twitter feed for more.

                1. re: kathryn

                  "sort of baby octopus"

                  Moscardini? If so, they are delicious when properly prepared.

                  1. re: ttoommyy

                    Sounds like moscardini...will look for it next time..thanks!

                2. re: erica

                  I had a special seafood paella at Tertulia.

                  359 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011