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Memorable foodie experience

I'm going to be staying at the Andaz 5th Ave. on the second weekend in December. I've done a lot of research (this forum rocks, such knowledgeable foodies), and just want to confirm my plans and prevent any hiccups. I also want to do a dress code check, since it's hard to find solid information anywhere, and I prefer to wear jeans (yes, I know, but I like to be comfortable when I eat. I could possibly be convinced to dress up a little bit, but I don't like stuffy environments. I'm open to changes and suggestions, especially for our final dinner, but I'd like to keep it around $80 PP including tip (not including drinks).

Day 1:

Breakfast: Ess-a-bagel for some lox and cream cheese
Lunch: Danji
Dinner: Keen's Steakhouse

Day 2:

Breakfast: Hotel
Lunch: Joe's Shanghai/Xi'an/Totto depending on wait times
Dinner: Colicchio & Sons Tap Room

Day 3:

Breakfast: Hotel or open to suggestions
Lunch: Eataly
Dinner: Open to Suggestions

I'd prefer to stay near midtown, and I'd rather not wait hours for a table (which is why we're doing Danji for lunch instead of dinner as they don't do reservations). Thanks in advance for your help, much appreciated.

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  1. Highly recommend both Ma Peche and Betony for your third dinner. Both are in the midtown area.

    7 Replies
    1. re: ellenost

      +1 for Betony. I also highly recommend Rouge Tomate.

      1. re: ellenost

        Ma Peche was a consideration, but I thought it might be too similar to Danji/Totto etc. I do want to try their pork buns, though.

        Betony looks to be very formal, I'm not sure I'd really fit in and feel comfortable in jeans.

        1. re: goingfar77

          Ma Peche really isn't similar to Danji or Totto. Then again Totto and Danji aren't in the same vein either...

          I think Ma Peche is a solid option for your 3rd dinner, and in midtown. The NoMad and The Breslin may also be good options, as you should feel comfortable in dark jeans and a nice shirt.

          1. re: goingfar77

            I agree, Ma Peche, Danji, and Totto are all very, very different.

            1. re: kathryn

              I didn't mean wholly the same, but as she is Korean we'd like to try one really good Korean fusion style place, and then maybe a good ramen place and leave it at that as far as Asian inspired meals go.

              1. re: goingfar77

                The cuisine at Ma Peche is no longer Asian inspired--just really delicious.

            2. re: goingfar77

              If your jeans are nice I don't think you would have any problem at Betony. It would be an excellent choice; the food is really fantastic.

          2. Breakfast at the newly opened Maison Kayser. Lady M also recently opened nearby, but I'm not sure what they're serving other than the famous crepe cake.

            If you're looking at the midtown Joe's Shanghai, I'd suggest planning something different. Totto, Xi'an, and Joe's are all fairly far from each other. Ippudo is near totto though and there's the new Ivan Ramen in Gotham Market. Haven't been yet. Midtown Xi'an doesn't have lamb dumplings.

            For your last dinner, look at Empellon Cocina or Taqueria.

            3 Replies
            1. re: coasts

              The lunch part was or/or/or, sorry I wasn't clear. I know some of them will be super busy so we'll just go to another if that's the case.

              1. re: coasts

                Gotham Market opens this Wednesday

                There's a new Totto Ramen without the lines (yet) on 51st between 9/10 open for dinner only

                1. re: Ziggy41

                  The Gotham Market looks good, I'll have to wait for reviews when it opens.

                1. Take a look at Sakagura near you for great Japanese tapas

                  I would still try to head downtown where things get much more interesting (eg Ssam Bar, Malai Marke).

                  In Hells Kitchen there are a ton of great cheap eats like Gazala, Pure Thai, Mercato and the Gotham Market that opened this wed will have some very tasty snacks

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Ziggy41

                    Gotham Market opened already? I thought it was going to open this upcoming Wednesday (11/20)?

                    1. re: zeeEats

                      I wish I could say something like "I should start reading my own posts before posting" but the truth is I do ;). Opens!!

                  2. For your Day 2, I would definitely suggest Totto over Xi'an and Joe's Shanghai. Xi'an isn't exactly comfortable for dining in, and JS is just simply not great. Depending on your budget, Ma Peche and The NoMad also do a great lunch.

                    As for dinner, there are simply much better options than Colicchio & Sons Tap Room. I like Tap Room for the service, but for the price point - Gramercy Tavern (Tavern Room) and other restaurants downtown are just so much better.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: zeeEats

                      The XLB at Joe's aren't good? I know you can't always trust reviews, but the C&S Tap Room seemed to review favorably.