Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > United States
Reload this Page >

Another midtown NYC restaurant question - do my choices fit my criteria?

Another midtown NYC restaurant question - do my choices fit my criteria?

Old Jan 6th, 2012, 01:19 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 2,652
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Another midtown NYC restaurant question - do my choices fit my criteria?

This June I'll be in NYC with my parents and my daughter. Many years ago my dad lived in NYC and when he returns to visit he enjoys meeting up with friends that still live nearby.

He would like to take a friend and his family out to dinner one night. His friend and his wife live in Long Island, his friend's daughters and their husbands live in NYC. Given that the daughters live in the city and probably have a local's perspective of the good places to eat, I want a restaurant that doesn't scream "bad overpriced tourist choice" (although we certainly are tourists).

We will be staying near Penn Station and I would like a restaurant reasonably nearby - within 15 minutes away (walking/subway combined). We'll probably be out all day, returning to the hotel to freshen up before dinner and don't want long haul to get to the restaurant.

Price-wise I'm thinking entrees in the $20-$30 range. Our group size will probably be around 10-12 people. Someplace with a relaxed and casual atmosphere. Based on other threads recommending restaurants I was thinking either Marseille or Etcetera Etcetera. Would those places fit my criteria? If you have any other suggestions I certainly welcome them.
chepar is online now  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 01:21 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 2,886
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I like Le Zie. It's unpretentious, reasonably priced and everyone who lives in the city forgets about it!
Bowsprit is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 01:35 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 2,886
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Here's the link:

http://lezie.com/index.php?option=co...&id=2&Itemid=3
Bowsprit is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 01:53 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Le Zie is an excellent choice. It has an adult clientele and the food is wonderful.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 02:29 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I liked Marseille and etc, etc.
I hate to say this, and it so speaks tourist, but Becco was great when we were there last month.
We were fortunate that we were seated upstairs, which is way less noisey and busy.
I also like St Andrews. It's a Scottish pub/restaurant I had great stiffy toffee pudding there, and their salmon was great.
Judyrem is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 02:31 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,137
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
That was supposed to be "sticky" not stiffy. LOL
Judyrem is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 02:53 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,210
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
To be honest, 10 to 12 people is a pretty large group for any restaurant, much less a busy one in the theater district. Both of the restaurants you mention work work price-wise, and etcetera etcetera is the cheaper of the two.

But I think etcetera etcetera isn't configured well to deal with such a large party. Marseille is crowded but might work. I've seen them do tables of that many people, but you will be at a group of possibly mismatched tables in an odd configuration.

Becco is so impossibly crowded that I can't imagine having a group of 10 or 12; I've been there in a group of 8 and it was not comfortable, though the food and service were spot on. They are certainly capable of dealing with that many people at once.

Would you consider a restaurant like Tony's Di Napoli? The family-style service really works well with large parties. Artisinal (which is not near Times Square but still within a 15- to 20-minute walk from your hotel area, can also deal with large groups but with service that is not always liked. But I love the food there. It's a little more expensive than Marseille.
doug_stallings is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 03:00 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 26,218
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Doug, I love Artisanal too, but don't you think it's too too noisy for a large group? We had a round table with a group of 7 I think, and couldn't hear the people across from us at all. It was a Friday night.
sf7307 is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 03:14 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 2,652
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Good points on the larger party and possible table configuration/crowded restaurant issues.

Also, sf7307 has made me think of something that I didn't consider earlier - my dad is pretty hard of hearing (even with his hearing aid) and probably would be frustrated trying to make conversation if the restaurant was super noisy.

My mom doesn't care too much for family style service restaurants unless she is the one in complete control of what to order.

Bowsprit - thanks for the suggestion, I'll take a look at their website.
chepar is online now  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 03:14 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 2,886
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Le Zie, although not in the Theatre district, will easily accomodate your group in their room set aside for that purpose.
Bowsprit is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 04:06 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
With that many people and a dad with a hearing problem (I went through that for years) I would definitely go for a private room - so your group isn't subject to the level of noise you will get in any but the most upscale/traditional of restaurants.

Two questions - what types of food does everyone like?

And do you know the couple that live in the city well enough to ask them for recos of places they like?
nytraveler is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 04:37 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 2,652
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We know the daughters and their husbands just in passing, so my dad doesn't feel comfortable asking them for recommendations (I tried suggesting that to him).

As far as types of food, it doesn't have to be limited to just Italian or French bistro type food - we're generally open to anything, though with the caveat that since we don't know several couples that well, it would probably be better to choose a type of cuisine that has broader appeal.
chepar is online now  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 05:38 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 1,391
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Take a look at E&E's Grillhouse. They have some table layouts that would work for you and the place is pretty quiet.

http://www.eegrillhouse.com/menus/dinner.html
SueNYC is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 07:49 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If you want a fun place that is inexpensive try Les Sans Culottes. The name literally means without pants but refers to the poor during the French Revolution

It is not as elegant as Le Zie but is condusive to good time.

http://lessansculottesny.com/

http://menupages.com/restaurants/les...culottes-east/
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Old Jan 6th, 2012, 08:30 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 674
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Sf, doesn't Artisanal still have the "Cheese Cave" room at the far corner of the restaurant? Maybe it could accommodate this group in a quieter setting.
bspielman is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2012, 02:43 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 22,230
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have to share this review of a new midtown Italian as a place NOT to eat!


http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainmen...T8CAxyuySI3N7O
ekscrunchy is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2012, 04:56 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 2,886
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We absolutely loved this place last year:

Enoteca Maria in St. George on Staten Island has a roster of rotating Italian grannies cooking. It's one of the most unique concepts in dining I've experienced and the food was great the night we went. Here's the link:

http://www.enotecamaria.com/wp/
Bowsprit is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2012, 10:20 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
The only problem is that this restaurant is 1.5 HOURS from midtown. Not exactly what the OP is looking for.
nytraveler is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2012, 11:26 AM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,210
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It's really hard to book a large party like this, especially when one person is hard of hearing. A private room would be great but costly. You pay extra for that privilege. Still, Artisanal does have their private dining room in the wine cave. The main restaurant is still very noisy.

Carmine's on the Upper West Side also has a private room, but I'm not sure of the minimum (but then it exceeds your travel requirements and is a family-style restaurant). Lots of upscale restaurants have private dining rooms, but you have to buy an expensive prix-fixe dinner. But I think any of those would work for party of 12.

Would you consider, perhaps, Maialino? There are some tables in the back that might be configured for such a large party. It's Roman-style Italian and in your price range --- in the Gramercy Park Hotel. Happily, the ceiling there absorbs a lot of noise.
doug_stallings is offline  
Old Jan 7th, 2012, 03:02 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 504
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I like le Zie,
Also,Uncle jacks Steak house on 9th avenue is excellent and right near Penn Station.The atmosphere is cozy and nice.The food is excellent.
cindymal is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 07:21 AM.