Mary's Fish Camp or Pearl Oyster Bar?

Old Nov 12th, 2007, 07:19 AM
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Mary's Fish Camp or Pearl Oyster Bar?

Hi

I was wondering if anyone had a preference between the two. I will be in NY in December and wanted to try one of them for dinner.

Thanks,
Johanna
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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 07:41 AM
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Pearl Oyster Bar - NO CONTEST!!! They have the best lobster roll in NYC. Waits for a table can be 90+ minutes on a weekend evening, but it's so worth it. The host will send you across the street to Cornelia Street Cafe to hang out at the bar, and he'll come get you when your table is ready.
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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 07:48 AM
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Mary's Fish Camp -- NO CONTEST!! Overall, Mary's cuisine is superior, including the lobster roll in my opinion.

(They're both great, obviously.)

You didn't mention lobster rolls specifically, but if that's what you're after, also consider Ed's Lobster Roll and the Mermaid Inn, which just opened a 2nd branch on the Upper West Side.

Enjoy!
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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 07:50 AM
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Thanks for the quick reply.

We are staying in Union Square, so it doesn't look like too far of a walk. I thought if we got there right when they open at 6:00 we would have time for a quick dinner before an 8:00 play. It looks like it is close to a subway stop that will take us up to the Theater District, so we don't have to wait for a cab.

Any advice on when to get in line?
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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 07:52 AM
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Okay, so it looks like we can't go wrong either way! Good to know.

Johanna
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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 08:01 AM
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We had dinner at Pearl's after an early show at the Village Vangaurd at and didn't have to wait, but it was around 10 pm. It was delicious.
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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 08:29 AM
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Both are terrific - impeccably fresh fish, simple, pure flavors, cramped quarters, interesting wines. I've found it's best to arrive about 10 - 15 minutes before opening, as a line starts and both small restaurants fill quickly - most nights every table is filled within 10 minutes of opening. Right before opening a staff member walks the line to take names and to see what table configuration they need. Also tables turn fairly quickly - the "second seating" is pretty easy to gauge at about 45 minutes to an hour after the opening seating. And one more thing - Mary's is a VERY pleasant lunch spot. Have a "little plate of heaven" (fried clams) - really delicious.
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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 09:54 AM
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The last time I dined at Mary's, I sat next to Mike Myers, who's a regular.

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Old Nov 12th, 2007, 05:25 PM
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Hate to say it, but you should get in line early. I think we got to Mary's about 1 hour before it opened. The place is tiny! Keep your eyes peeled for Matthew Broderick and Sara Jessica Parker, who live around the corner...
 
Old Nov 13th, 2007, 01:03 AM
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Another vote for Mary's and do line
up early.
and if you go to Brooklyn try her
other restaurant Brooklyn Fish Camp.
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Old Nov 13th, 2007, 02:19 PM
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I'm partial to Pearl Oyster Bar. It was the original and Mary used to work there and sort of stole the concept. But, beyond being a "purist," I also like the block it's on -- Cornelia Street -- which also has several other good restaurants, including Po, the Cornelia Street Cafe and Home. It's very neighborhoody and the best of Manhattan, in that respect.
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Old Nov 13th, 2007, 03:28 PM
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If you are in Union Sq., then you should try Blue Water.

I prefer AquaGrill on Spring St. They have the best asparagus and salmon.

Punch, just up the street a bit from Fishes Eddy is also a good place for a casual lunch or dinner. It is on Broadway at 20th, just a short walk from US.

The Great and Powerful Thingorjus
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Old Nov 14th, 2007, 11:34 AM
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It seems to me that AquaGrill is in a totally different class from the other places mentioned. Way back when, AquaGrill received several stars from the New York Times (I can't remember if it was two or three) and it's a fine casual restaurant. Pearl and Mary's are slightly elegant seafood shacks. There's a big difference.
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