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Inexpensive, good restaurant in the midtown area?

Heading to NYC with my husband this weekend with my parents in tow. We plan on going to lots of our favorite haunts downtown and in Brooklyn over the weekend, but I'm stuck for a good, inexpensive option for dinner when we arrive via NJ Transit on Friday evening. We don't want to go to a tourist trap (Bubba Gump, Guy Fieri, etc), a theatre restaurant, deli where the waitresses sing mad dance, etc. to add to the challenge, my parents are not the most adventurous eaters, so a recommendation for a ramen house, or cheap ethnic food would be great for me and the husband, but not for my parents. No pizza suggestions, as we are planning on pizza in Brooklyn on Saturday. Please help!

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  1. I forgot to add, that we are looking to stay around the midtown area and not have to rely on subways or taxis Friday night....so around Midtown and within a 20-30 minute walking radius!

    1. "Midtown" has many dimensions on this site, Jill, but is generally understood to extend from the Hudson to the East River, 34th to 59th Streets. That's a fair bit of real estate; if you're asking for something within a "20-30m" walk, you may want to be more specific about where you're starting from.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Phil Ogelos

        Thanks...about a 20-30 minute walk radius of Port Authority (8th and 40th)?

        1. Marseille or Pigalle might fit the bill.

          1. What's your budget, per person, before tax, tip, alcohol?

            1. I like the Marseille recommendation, and they will take a reservation. I also like the Pub Room at Keens, which, while not "inexpensive," I would describe as moderately priced so long as you stick with the more casual pub menu over the more extensive dining room menu (and I prefer the pub menu in any event, as it covers all the bases and offers more reasonably sized portions at more reasonable prices). They do not, however, accept reservations in the Pub Room, so if you are going at prime time you might need to be prepared to wait for a table.

              1. Hill Country BBQ or Hill Country Chicken could work for you. They're both near Madison Square.

                1. Try Midtown West Adjacent, or what other people call Hell's Kitchen.

                  Follow Manhattan 'Hound, Ziggy41, has a nice blog with a entire section devoted to good and affordable eats in/around Midtown and Hell's Kitchen.

                  Worth a read.


                  1. If they like Greek food, go to Dafni: http://dafnitaverna.com/ They're right across the street from Port Authority, they're reliably good, and they're inexpensive.