A(nother) NYC Restaurant Question

Old Nov 3rd, 2018, 11:38 PM
  #21  
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Veselka is out (no group reservation), and I have shared IMDonehere's recommendations with DS. They all have good potential with their vegetarian options. Thanks!
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Old Nov 4th, 2018, 11:06 AM
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I really disliked the food at the Turkish Kitchen, it was not good at all IMO. I would avoid Greek unless you go to Astoria, Kyklades in East Village was so expensive and not worth it.
Try Miss Lilys or Edi & the Wolf.
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Old Nov 4th, 2018, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Odin View Post
... Kyklades in East Village was so expensive and not worth it.
Yep, that's the one I referenced in #13. I'll be returning for the octopus but it is pricey. Definitely not an option for this group.

East Village
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Old Nov 4th, 2018, 07:48 PM
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Agree about Greek and Turkish in Manhattan...I've not found good ones but have not been to Milos and those super-high-end ones.


Even in Astoria, not thrilling.

Stick to Chinese, Mexican, Thai, etc etc....
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Old Nov 5th, 2018, 04:23 AM
  #25  
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Decisions have been made! A table for 16 has been reserved at Au' Zataar (the vegetarians in the group approved); with plans to hit Pio Pio the following night. Thank you, everyone, for your suggestions and assistance!
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Old Nov 5th, 2018, 05:09 AM
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I'm surprised you haven't had any recommendations for Italian restaurants. There are several that specialize in large groups and serve family style (and have good food). I'm partial to Tony's Di Napoli (the "Upper East Side" branch), where I usually take large family groups. Most entrees are about $30 to $40 but serve four. So two of those (a chicken and a pasta, for example) fit into your $20 price range per person. Adding appetizers and drinks would inch prices up to $30 per person, but it's worth the splurge there. Similarly, Carmine's which is not so well liked in this forum, is a good destination for large groups and offers even larger portions than Tony's Di Napoli. It doesn't have quite as good food, but I always leave there satisfied, and I still go there a few times a year (I'm partial to the location on the Upper West Side, and I'd actually avoid the Times Square location). Finally, Buca Di Beppo has opened near Times Square. It's a chain, but it has reasonably good food (not great and my third option of the three). All of these will allow reservations for large groups.
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Old Nov 5th, 2018, 05:10 AM
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>>>Agree about Greek and Turkish in Manhattan
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Old Nov 5th, 2018, 05:11 AM
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And John's Pizzeria in midtown (not the one on Bleecker) can also easily accommodate large groups and has good, pretty reasonably priced food.
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Old Nov 5th, 2018, 09:09 AM
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FraDiavolo: Thanks for the food cart tip..I live close by and will check. I need to find more places close to my house because I am always, always always having to take train, bus or taxi when I have dinner out of the house.
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Old Nov 5th, 2018, 06:23 PM
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We always enjoy it. They have a new special that we have not tried but families were wolfing it down, the tableside shawarma.
Have a wonderful time.
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Old Nov 6th, 2018, 05:10 AM
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doug_stallings, DS considered a place in Little Italy that we enjoyed on nearly every visit, but Au' Zataar won out.

Tableside Shawarma sounds amazing. I didn't see it on the Au' Zataar menu, though?
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Old Nov 6th, 2018, 06:16 AM
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https://auzaatar.com/

I am not sure why it is missing from the menu, but here is a picture of it and some information. Crazy enough their french fries are fabulous and come with the tableside shawarma.
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Old Nov 6th, 2018, 07:40 AM
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Crazy enough their french fries are fabulous and come with the tableside shawarma.
Actually, this reminded me that when I was in Athens in 1972, they wrapped french fries inside the schwarma at the roadside stands (25 cents!)
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Old Nov 6th, 2018, 08:37 AM
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Thank you, IMDonehere. DS is on it.

Come to think of it, DH and I had French Fries in our Shawarma on a Corfu beach a couple of years ago, and our lunch was memorable (in a good way). I think the sandwiches cost about €2 each, though.
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Old Nov 13th, 2018, 02:47 AM
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A neat list of the LES restaurants Anthony Bourdain visited on the last show -
https://www.thrillist.com/eat/new-yo...dmmmL4XDQ4Hj5M
Veselka was one of them.

"This is a show about a very special place. A very special time. And some very special people. So much happened -- so much began -- on New York’s Lower East Side,” Anthony Bourdain wrote in the field notes for the final episode of his beloved television show, Parts Unknown -- sentiment betraying his tough guy exterior.

For Bourdain, it seemed, eating could unlock nostalgia. And New York -- a city taken with its own past -- is a fitting, though bittersweet location for his series’ end. It’s here where he began an ascent into the food world that took him all over the globe, and back home again.


In the last episode Bourdain completed before his premature death earlier this year, he samples plates of red sauce and pierogies with the local artists, writers, and musicians who transformed the neighborhood into the nucleus of culture that it became. He holds court at Max Fish, and sips egg creams outside Ray’s Candy Store. He dines with Debbie Harry and Fab 5 Freddy. He does it all while traversing the city that fueled the early stages of what became a lifetime of culinary exploration. “Who gets to tell the stories? This is a question asked often,” Bourdain asks in another episode. “The answer in this case, for better or for worse, is I do -- at least this time out.”

Here are all the places you can follow him to this last time out."
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Old Nov 16th, 2018, 07:54 PM
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As noted above the Veselka that Tony and Blondie discussed is long gone. It used to be a cheap neighborhood late night haunt that supplied good and hearty fare. And while the menu still has some old favorites, it caters to the kids who make the EV there first stop from college or a brunch stop. The sense of neighborhood and the communal arts is a distant memory.

I was glad to see that they had an egg cream at Ray's. Cranky old Ray has been going out of business for years and manages to hang on. Another institution, years ago people would leave their guitars there and tell there friend would pick it up in a few hours, knowing it was safe.

Thirty five year ago in Tompkins Square, across from Ray's, the NYPD needed an army tank to clear out the squatters and drug dealers. Now the park could not be safer filled wih families and skate boarders.
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Old Nov 18th, 2018, 06:08 AM
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Also, if memory serves, Veselka is a Ukrainian, not Polish diner. Enjoyed the food there the time I went.
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