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1 night alone in NYC

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I'm going to Manhattan for a job interview. I'm staying in the East 50's. I have one night (before an all day interview) to eat alone. I love to eat but I know I'm going to be nervous. My per diem is $57 for dinner. Suggestions?

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  1. Is that $57 including tax and tip?

    What kind of food do you like?

    2 Replies
    1. re: kathryn

      Two things: I'm not limited really by the per diem and under normal conditions wouldn't even mention it. It just seems like given how anxious I 9 days out, that spending a lot is a waste. Mostly I like good...not a fan of German/ Austrian food, but like ethnic cuisine the best. If you know the DC area, my favorite restaurant is Volt in Frederick which is new American. But good is more important than actual food. I eat (almost) anything.

      1. re: kielystar

        You can get very good Japanese (Sushi Yasuda, Sakagura, Aburiya Kinnosuke, Soba Totto, etc.) near Midtown East / Grand Central but that will depend upon how much you might go over your budget.

    2. Ma Peche! if you're a drinker, go early and take advantage of their happy hour.

      14 Replies
      1. re: coasts

        Would you recommend still for a solo diner after the recent menu change to dim sum style service?

        1. re: kathryn

          woah! i thought the dim sum was in addition to the existing menu not a total replacement. is lunch dim sum only, too?

          1. re: coasts

            Correct. Lunch/Dinner menu below:

            passed plates
            *subject to availability*
            spicy apple
            black bass and foie
            broccoli salad
            clam ceviche
            collards
            crab dip
            duck
            duck fat challah
            fish bun
            cod fish fritters
            lamb
            lobster
            lobster rice
            oysters
            pickles
            pig
            pork bun
            ribs
            scallop
            short rib
            shrimp
            shrimp balls
            spicy rice cakes
            trout roe
            uni
            vegetable rice cakes
            vegetable rice
            wings

            chef’s specials
            fried brussels sprouts – ginger-scallion, cherry, calabrian chili
            lamb noodles (elysian fields, pa) – soft egg, cabbage, chili jam
            john dory – butternut squash, israeli couscous, clams
            grilled hanger steak – rice, togarashi, sesame
            whole boneless porgy – my dad’s hot sauce, fennel, lime
            fried chicken – country fried or habanero
            chicken/lamb and rice – please reserve in advance

            1. re: coasts

              I thought the same thing, until I looked at the menu online (because of this thread). I'm sad.

              1. re: coasts

                Friend went last night. Said it was "solid" and to "bring an army" in order to try lots of things.

                1. re: kathryn

                  I'm going solo next week and plan to order a "ton" of food. Haven't dined out in a month to get ready for my annual physical, and definitely plan to splurge at Ma Peche!

              2. re: kathryn

                I'm trying the new dim sum format at Ma Peche next week dining solo. I think it will be a lot of fun.

                1. re: ellenost

                  I'm curious what the prices are like for the "dim sum"? Nothing's posted on their website.

                  1. re: Pookipichu

                    None of the Momofuku restaurants post their prices on the website (other than Ko or the large format meals on the reservation page).

                    1. re: Pookipichu

                      i went to ma peche for lunch last week. i thought the dim sum would be in addition to a regular menu. however it is not. they only serve the dim sum in addition to some chef's specials.

                      the prices vary from 8 - 26. off the top off my head...

                      spicy apple - 8
                      black bass and foie - 16
                      broccoli salad - 9
                      clam ceviche - 12
                      collards - 9
                      crab dip - 13
                      duck - 22
                      duck fat challah - 6
                      fish bun - 6
                      cod fish fritters - 8
                      lamb - 20
                      lobster - 24
                      lobster rice - 13
                      oysters - 21 (for 6)
                      pickles - 6
                      pig - 6
                      pork bun - 5
                      ribs - 18
                      scallop - 14
                      short rib - ?
                      shrimp - ?
                      shrimp balls - 8
                      spicy rice cakes -13
                      trout roe - ?
                      uni - 14
                      vegetable rice cakes - 11
                      vegetable rice -10
                      wings - 9

                      i had the lobster rice, apples, and shrimp balls. the rice had maybe 2 pieces of lobster. the shrimp balls were ok. apples was probably my favorite dish - raw plate with cucumbers, sriacha mayo, bok choy (?). overall pretty underwhelming. but would definitely go back with a larger group to be able to try most of the dishes. seems that would be more fun than solo dining.

                      1. re: TitoSofrito

                        Excellent memory!

                2. re: coasts

                  DO NOT drink if you have an interview ....Be careful!!!only a cpl at least....

                  1. re: Raffles

                    the interview is the next day. i didn't say she should get bombed.

                    1. re: coasts

                      There is no way I'm drinking the night before my interview. This is for a major job (that I really, really want). Usually I'm dining out with friends or spouse and don't usually eat out alone....

                3. The Bar Room at the Modern

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: loratliff

                    Just checked the menu and it seems to have shrunk by half now? Used to be three long pages. Now maybe 3 pages of 5 dishes each? That's a bit disappointing.

                    1. re: kathryn

                      Probably due to change in chef.

                  2. Rotisserie Georgette or the previously mentioned Bar at The Modern.

                    1. If you like Middle Eastern food head over to Al Bustan. Excellent authentic Lebanese cuisine.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Motosport

                        i loved the food at Al Bustan the one time i went -- just wish the decor wasn't so faux-glam ugly...

                      2. don't forget to pick up some chocolate chip cookies from Jacque torres on the way back home.

                        1. You could walk off some nerves going crosstown over to blue ribbon sushi at columbus circle for a "lighter" meal of sushi and such:
                          http://www.blueribbonrestaurants.com/...

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Ttrockwood

                            If its really a case of nerves, howsabout sushi at Masa in columbus circle?
                            http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/15/din...

                            1. re: porker

                              Interesting... We don't talk much about Masa here. I wonder if it is still tough to get into. Now with Nakazawa on the scene, I wonder how that affected Masa. Since i can't seem to get into Nakazawa maybe Masa is worth a shot. Has anyone been there lately?

                              1. re: foodwhisperer

                                Well, I think Masa is unappealing to most because of the price. I quite honestly can't afford it, whereas Nakazawa -- while not "cheap" by any means -- is more realistic for me.

                          2. How about:

                            Crave Fishbar on 50th+2nd
                            Salvation Taco 39th b/t Lex+3rd

                            1. The Smith on 51st and 2nd, you can eat at the bar
                              I also think you can eat at the bar at Avra on 47th Street

                              1. how about this: walk to Russian Vodka Room on W.52nd...consume many carafes of garlic/horseradish-infused vodka and greasy potato pancakes...wake up at dawn somewhere (Brighton Beach? Atlantic City?) and show up at interview disheveled, yet w/ a great Gotham tale to tell :) (yes, i am joking)

                                ok, a real suggestion: it's not right near your hotel, but Keens Chophouse might be a nice call for this...it's old school NY,steeped in history...and if you sit in the pub room (in btw main dining room and bar) there are smaller cuts of steak and mutton and sandwiches that fit the budget, and their fried chicken salad is delicious...it's on 36th, by 6th Ave...

                                Another suggestion is Molyvos -- Greek food on 56th/7thAve...pleasant bar dining and solid, if unexciting, moderately upscale Greek food and a crowd from Carnegie Hall...