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Aug 6, 2013 10:50 AM

Favorite "counter dining" spot?

Not necessarily a bar, but it could be, but just anywhere where you sit at the counter, esp. places where you can watch and eavesdrop on the cook (or chef, or whatever).

Spots that come to mind for me are the counter at Old Country Cafe, Pie N Burger and Pizzeria Mozza.


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  1. Front room at Mo-Chica

      1. re: maudies5

        The problem with the Apple Pan is the hoards of hungry diners looking over your shoulder impatient for you to inhale that last bite so they can sit down, and the waiters who try to usher you out quickly. Eating there sometimes feels like one of those Nathan's hot dog eating contests on Coney Island.

        1. re: jgilbert1000

          not if you go during off hours.

          i hate eating there in prime time.

          but off hours, which they do actually have, is quite relaxing and not too stressful.

          it would be great if they made stiff drinks too.

          1. re: jgilbert1000

            Same problem I have at Dim Sum restaurants in HKG.

        2. Shunji, Kiriko, Tsujita (and ANNEX)

          7 Replies
          1. re: PeterCC

            Yeah, I suppose you could throw in every sushi counter.

            Better question might be, what sushi places do you prefer table seating over the sushi counter. Only place that comes to mind might be Matsuhisa.

            1. re: ipsedixit

              +1 on (insert sushi bar here), but my choices would be Shunji and Kiriko as well, obviously. Annex > OG Tsujita re: counter seating for the OP's purposes.

              Trois Mec at the counter was a very fun meal, provided you can obtain "tickets."

              1. re: ipsedixit

                Table service > counter service at sugarFISH. (With the exception of Nozawa Bar, of course...)

                The private sushi bar at Matsuhisa is MUCH preferred over any of the other seats in the house, whether they be the bar or table in the main dining area.

                1. re: J.L.

                  That's the nine-seater tempura bar ?

                  1. re: kevin

                    Yes, but so much more than just tempura served in the room: You can order every dish on the menu, AND there are some special ones only available in that room.

                    On that tempura note, though, Matsuhisa's tempura corn in the private bar may be the best I've ever tried.

                    1. re: J.L.

                      You know what ????

                      I think I've never been yet.

                      How does one make a reservation for the tempura bar ? Do they required like a 150 minimum per person or somethig ?

                  2. re: J.L.

                    I've never been to the private bar at M.

              2. Out of this jurisdiction, but a companion and I once sat at the counter at Emeril's in New Orleans while he chatted with us and cooked up a free app. Hard to beat that.

                2 Replies
                  1. re: mc michael

                    i had his famed dessert at the counter along with a chicory coffee though it was nothing special.

                  2. Shunji's.


                    Chez Jay.

                    Dan Tana's.



                    2 Replies
                    1. re: kevin

                      How could I have forgotten Musso & Frank? There is something deeply comforting about sitting in front of the Grill in the Old Room