Near Penn Station?
We'll be in town for a week staying within a few blocks (south) of Penn Station. Any neighborhood gems we need to know about? Especially interested in more economical places to grab a quick bite. Our destination meals are more or less overbooked as it is. Just a few neighborhood places to grab a quick bite when we're on the run. (Though we could always use another great find destination restaurant if you happen to have one.)
Way to many destination restaurants to even list, just depends on what kind of food you are looking for. Since you somewhat close, you can always head to eataly and grab all sorts of great food there. They have stand up tables where you can sample cheese and meat with a few glasses of wine. They also have a great roof deck for drinks if you are in the mood for that. Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop is a cool NYC style sandwich place thats been around forever thats near 23rd st. Number 7 sub is a must go for sandwiches as well. Sadly Penn Station isn't great for food choices but if you let me know what else you want I can see what I can come up with.
Untamed Sandwiches (a short walk but worth it), Eataly, Eisenberg's, No. 7 Sub, Shake Shack, Num Pang, Mooncake Foods, The Breslin, Hill Country, Co.
You may want to check out International Grocery on 9th Avenue between W.41 & W.42nd Streets. While it's not a restaurant you can buy items such as feta cheese, stuffed grape leaves, olives, deli meats,breads, whatever the name of that roe dip is and so on. Right out of the bag kind of stuff. They also have a pretty decent spice selection in case you want to bring some home on the trip back. And there's a few Paki/Indian/Bengi fast food places along that strip as well. But be mindful of the spiciness. Actually, thinking about, I do believe you have quite a few options around the Port Authority by 9th Avenue.
And Tracks inside Penn Station is pretty good. Not too much ambiance or atmosphere, but certainly one of the best raw bars in NYC.
Last edit: Then there's the Chelsea Market under the High Line (W 15th & 9th or 10 Ave). They have a slew of quickies. My favorites being Dickson's Butchers, they have really great hot dogs, porchetta and Rubens, as well as tasty sides. The Lobster Place is hit or miss, but certainly an adventure.
Be sure to swing by K-town! It's 32nd between 5th & 6th and it blows my mind how many restaurants / small eateries they manage to fit into one block.
I like Shilla for Korean barbecue, the food court if you need something ultra-fast, Paris Baguette / Tous les Jours for cute Asian / French baked goods, and Arirang for hot noodle-soups in case it's still brass monkeys out when you're here. Also, Bon-Chon (or Mad for Chicken, or Turntable, or whatever they're calling themselves this week) for delicious Korean fried chicken.
Larb Ubol is at 9th Ave and I think 37th. Tasty Issan Thai (mostly not curries). Very good finnochiona salami at Salumeria Biellese,, as well as other quality salumi like guanciale if you want some treats to pack in your suitcase. Id check out Koreatown too if I were staying in that neighborhood, also look for the threads on midtown szechuan choices.