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QUIET and accessible restaurant for lunch in Midtown

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I have a very special request.

I work in Manhattan and enjoy occasional lunches with a good friend who lives in the city. I work in Midtown East near GCT and when we have lunch I like to stay close to the office so I can return to work in decent time.

The problem is that my friend has a neurological condition that leaves him both physically limited and also has some speech issues. If a restaurant is too crowded and noisy it makes conversation very difficult.

I don't care about what the cuisine is. We're not picky, but we do need vegetarian options for him. It doesn't even have to be the best food in the world and if it's a little pricey that's okay too. I just need to be able to talk to my friend and not have him deal with stuff like stairs. I would also like a place that takes rezzies, although if it's not crowded, I suppose I don't always need one.

Anyone have any suggestions?

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  1. Kajitsu is fairly close and definitely quiet compared to the usual midtown roar. Is your friend in a wheel chair? If so, I might call because I don't remember if there is a step to get into their new location.

    Tulsi is also quiet, but I think that's mostly because in my experience the food is average and the service slow.

    Avra is a little louder, but in my experience, not terribly so. It also has some outside seating, which may be quieter, if the weather improves. Definitely no steps, as you can walk right in from the outside area with tables.

    2 Replies
    1. re: downtownchica

      I would highly recommend Tulsi. I have always found the food to be well above average, sometimes excellent, and it has always been filled in the evening. If lunch is quieter, all the better.

      1. re: downtownchica

        I was going to say Kajitsu too. Vegetarian (vegan), quiet, gracious. Also expensive, and the food, though excellent, is not everyone's cup of tea. But it certainly fits OP's requirements.

      2. Ai Fiori

        1. I used to work in Chrysler Building (up til one month ago) and lunched often in the area. Following may have 1-2 steps into the dining room or off the street, if that is OK. Can't recall.

          Andaz Hotel - good spacing between tables
          Osteria Laguna
          Aureole

          1. Sakagura is right by GCT, there are stairs but also says there is wheelchair access. Lots of veg choices too

            1. Thanks for all the suggestions. I see a lot of possibilities here. My friend isn't in a wheelchair. He is just very unsteady and needs a cane, so he can handle a step or two. Any of these cab work.