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Lunch Near Carlton Hotel, 88 Madison Ave?

My wife and I are going to be in town this weekend for the Phish run at MSG and are staying at the Carlton Hotel. I'm looking for some recommendations for lunch on Saturday, and breakfast/brunch on Sunday?

I see that Shake Shack is within walking distance, and we've never been, so I'm assuming we should do that for one of the meals?

Thanks for your help!

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  1. I should have noted that we'd like to stay within walking distance of the hotel and the MSG area. Thanks again!

    3 Replies
    1. re: LawnBoy06

      do you have a budget or preferred cuisines? some ideas:

      the nomad
      the breslin
      the cannibal
      artisanal
      keens
      junoon
      mad for chicken
      szechuan gourmet

      1. re: MarieLuncheonette

        Marie--

        Thanks for the reply. We won't be looking for anything fancy. Just something casual, and reasonably priced.

        1. re: LawnBoy06

          One person's reasonable is another person's extravagant. Can you give us $ ranges, before tax/tip?

    2. this reminds me of a very funny post some time ago, again during a phish run, where OP was looking for the best restaurants to eat at while on LSD.

      you'll be near enough to Defonte's, one of the city's best sandwich shops. there's also Hill Country Barbecue, conveyor sushi at East (not superb quality by any means), Blue Smoke, all of Korea Town...

      14 Replies
      1. re: coasts

        Coasts-- That's actually quite hilarious, though I doubt it was a serious inquiry that someone was legitimately asking for somewhere to eat while on LSD. Some stereotypes of the fanbase will just never go away I guess...

        Thanks for the heads up on Defonte's. Looks delicious. Hill Country is a good rec too. We've been to the D.C. location.

        Any particular spots in Korea Town that you'd recommend? Perhaps for a late night meal post show. I know Zimmern highlighted some spots in a recent episode, so I can use that as a guide, but I'd love to hear from a local's point of view too.

        Also would still like to hear thoughts on Shake Shack? Over hyped? Worth checking out? Having never been, I feel as though I have to check it out once right?

        1. re: LawnBoy06

          I did tour from '94-2001 plus a few more recent shows. Didn't try for tickets to this run but would kinda like to go one night.

          Definitely check out Shake Shack. I love their Smoke Shack burger with peppers and bacon, as well as the shackago dog. Skip the fries.

          In Korea town, I like shilla for cooked dishes and stews. They're open 24 hours.

          1. re: coasts

            Don't know if you know that Shake Shack changed their fries. There's a big sign in the UWS location saying "you spoke, we listened" and hand-cut, twice fried fresh French fries. Seems like they are no longer serving the frozen crinkle-cut ones.

            1. re: LNG212

              Fresh fries only at the GCT, UWS, and UES locations for now.

              1. re: kathryn

                Interesting. I wonder why not everywhere.

                1. re: LNG212

                  supposedly kitchen constraints and conversion. i guess it's a matter of time.

          1. re: coasts

            LOL! Wow. That is some entertaining stuff. I still can't believe they posted about a great place to eat while on "E." Who eats when they're on ecstasy anyway?

            Thanks again for the info. I think our day is shaping up as follows:

            Saturday:
            Shake Shack (Lunch)
            Rattle & Hum and/or Ginger Man for some great craft beer before the show
            Koreatown (Latenight) or do some pizza (Is there anywhere in the area that does legit pizza that doesn't cater to the tourist crowd that'd be open late)

            Sunday:
            Still undecided. Probably not going to do a sit down brunch now that the weather looks nasty for the drive back to Baltimore. The sandwiches at Defontes look like they'd do the trick. Or, is there a top notch bagels & lox spot in the area?

            1. re: LawnBoy06

              for what it's worth, the crowd at both Rattle and Hum and Ginger Man can be a bit fratty. if that's not your thing, you might consider Breslin for one of their cask ales and a lamb burger. they make one of the best off-lot grilled cheeses, although, they're well more than a buck.

              1. re: coasts

                Thanks Coasts. The fratty scene is definitely not our thing. We'll consider the Breslin. Although last time we were in town, we did do the Ginger Man and had a great experience. I was really impressed with their selection, and it was relatively quiet as we set up shop there early afternoon. The only other people in the place were Phish fans, so we were lucky not to experience any of the douche-baggery that's been rumored to frequent there

                1. re: LawnBoy06

                  Thanks everyone for helping us get our eating/drinking options set so far. The only other option we may be looking for a recommendation for would be for late night pizza (if we're not up for Koreatown), and for a great bagel and lox joint for the morning.

                  Cheers!

                  1. re: LawnBoy06

                    Rattle N Hum gets a lot of the Phish crowd every year for the shows. Definitely not "fratty". Ginger man however is very douchey.

                    Late night Korea town is a great choice. Better than any pizza in the vicinity.

                    Not sure about bagels in that area though

                    1. re: MVNYC

                      Thanks for the heads up. Maybe we'll settle in at Ratlle N Hum this time around, since we did Gingerman last time we were up for a run.

                      1. re: LawnBoy06

                        Rattle N Hum sometimes shows pay per view feeds of phish concerts.

          2. Breslin for breakfast on Sunday especially if you can do early; the steak and eggs with salsa verde is fantastic. For a really inexpensive but great lunch/mid afternoon meal hit Num Pang (Broadway location).

            5 Replies
            1. re: Spiritchaser

              Wow. Num Pang looks great. We'll probably be on the run and not have time for a sit down brunch, so that could be the winner...

              Still looking for pizza late night and a bagel shop for the morning just in case...?

              1. re: LawnBoy06

                Pizza - go to Pizza Suprema, 8th avenue and 32nd (not far from the Garden). Open until midnight

                1. re: plf515

                  Thanks for the pizza rec. Checked out their website and liked what I saw. We'll probably still aim for Koreatown late night, but, you never know when a craving for a good slice will come about. Especially when you're from Baltimore and don't exactly have great access to the best NY style pizza

                  1. re: LawnBoy06

                    One thing about Koreatown is that many of the restaurants are open 24 hours.

                    For a restaurant that is a little higher class, on a much higher floor, and with a great view, try Gaonuri on 6th Ave.

                2. re: LawnBoy06

                  Go to russ and daughters for bagels and lox sandwiches to go (no seating there anyhow) for the morning you leave

              2. Have stayed in that neighborhood often I like Penelope's on 30th and Lex for lunch and brunch but there is always line for brunch Sunday. A good back-up is Les Halles on Park very near your hotel.