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NYC Restaurant advice and itinerary help!!! Nov. 6-10

NYC Restaurant advice and itinerary help!!! Nov. 6-10

Old Sep 6th, 2010, 09:09 AM
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NYC Restaurant advice and itinerary help!!! Nov. 6-10

Hi Fodorites!!!

Firstly, thank you so much for your help in preparing for past trips, as well as, this current adventure to NYC. I've been reading forum posts for the past couple of weeks and have been able to pull together a lot of good information already.

I will be taking my daughter (9-years-old, 2nd trip to NYC) and sister (25, first-time in NYC). Predominately, the advice I'm looking for is regarding restaurants in the areas of our activities. We are not foodies, but I'm hoping to stay away from popular chains. So, any budget to moderate priced recommendations are welcome and greatly appreciated. Below is our itinerary...

Saturday, November 6:
Arrive JFK around 12:00 p.m.
Check-in to hotel
Metropolitan Museum of Art
For the Met, I was thinking of doing a Museum Highlights tour. They also have a Family Program for my daughter, if time and interest permits.
Looking for dinner restaurant after the Met???
After dinner, will wander depending on energy level. (Serendipity for dessert, FAO Schwarz)

Sunday, November 7:
Top of the Rock
Midtown walking tour with NYC by foot (2:00)
Lion King (6:30, tickets already purchased, Orchestra Row H Seats 123-125)
Looking for recommendations for lunch and dinner around Midtown/Theatre District???

Monday, November 8:
Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island (9:00, crown tickets already purchased)
Brooklyn Bridge
Looking for dinner recommendation around Lower Manhattan/Brooklyn Bridge???

Tuesday, November 9:
Central Park (Wollman Rink, Carousel, walk around)
American Museum of Natural History
Looking for AM and PM recommendations for meals around Central Park/Upper West Side

Wednesday, November 10:
Walk around East Village, Chinatown, Little Italy
Depart JFK around 5:00 pm

Again, any dining recommendations are appreciated... kid-friendly and reasonably priced. Any other recommendations for things to see and do are also welcome.

Thank you!!!
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 10:28 AM
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Are you aware that the New York Marathon is Sunday, November 7? Depending on what you'll be doing, street closings, etc. may be problematic. On the other hand, it's a really exciting time, and fun to watch at least part of it. You don't mention where you are staying, so I can't make suggestions about when and where to watch, but uou can check out the details here: www.nycmarathon.org And my experience has been that it is impossible to find a cab on the west side of Central Park once the runners start coming in.

My favorite restaurant on the West Side is Kefi for Greek. It is not terribly expensive, and really good. It's on Columbus between 84th and 85th.
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 11:06 AM
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Maryanntex-

We will be staying in Brooklyn... Hotel Le Bleu

I realized, mid-planning last month, that the NYC marathon would be during our trip. My sister works in retail management and was not able to take time off from work after the first week of November. We hope to catch some of the marathon action, but aren't going for that sole purpose.

Do you think the marathon crowd will greatly impact our trip???
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 11:58 AM
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My experience (I've been there during four marathons) is that the problems occur if you try to get a cab in the area of the finish once the masses start finishing, or if you need to cross any street where the race is being run. Last time we needed to meet people on the east side of 1st Ave. and couldn't cross above 59th St.--so we never got together. Here's a marked map so you can see if there are street closings that will affect you. http://www.marathonguide.com/coursem...MIDD=472101107
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 01:37 PM
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Sat.
There are not a lot of restaurants right near the Met since Fifth ave. has no restaurants and the area is a very high rent district. You can head east toward Lexington/3rd aves. where you'd get the subway and find lots of options. Due is a good Italian, for casual pub food, Luke's Bar & Grill; if you want to try something a bit different, Beyoglu for Turkish.
http://www.menupages.com/restaurants/beyoglu/ Menupages.com will have details on all of these. Your other option is to head back to midtown near Serendipity. Brio is a decent Italian near there but there are loads of options.

Sun.
Most restaurants serve brunch on Sunday. It might be fun to eat at the Rock Center Cafe overlooking the ice rink at Rock. Ctr. Saks Fifth ave. is across from Rock. Ctr. and has a nice cafe. If you sit at a window table, there are nice views. If your show is at 6:30, you'll either be eating dinner very early or late after the show. Which do you prefer? One of the best spots to watch the marathon is at 1st ave. & ~ 59th st. where they come off the 59th st. bridge and enter Manhattan for the first time. That happens around 11:30 as I recall.

Mon.
The South St. Seaport is near the Manhattan side of the Brooklyn bridge & has lots of restaurants. The Bridge Cafe is historic and good food. Are you planning on walking the bridge? In which direction?

Tues.
Gray's Papaya is a hot dog stand on Broadway & 73 st. that's very good if you like hot dogs. There's also a Shake Shack for burgers on the UWS.

Wed
You should plan to visit the Tenement Museum on the lower east side and have breakfast or lunch at Katz's deli. Lombardi's is one of the famous pizza places and is on the edge of Little Italy.
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 01:40 PM
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Thanks for the detailed marathon map! It looks like we should be able to bypass the marathon using the subway from our hotel. I also scheduled our midtown activities on Sunday, which is not part of the course. I wanted to maximize the time that we had on our trip without Sunday being all about the marathon.
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 02:00 PM
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mclaurie-

Thank you for the restaurant suggestions. I will definitely take your advice. Gray's Papaya is on our list.

Your questions:

Sunday: I'm thinking that we will probably opt for a really late dinner.

Monday: We will walk the Brooklyn Bridge, although I haven't figured out which direction yet. Our hotel is in Brooklyn, so... would it be overly ambitious to walk over the Bridge in the morning before the Statue of Liberty?

Wednesday: I looked at the Tenement Museum's website. My only concern is that we have to fly out that afternoon... so we will only comfortably have until about 1 pm of sightseeing that day. Should I try to rework my Monday schedule to include it?
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 02:14 PM
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I'd suggest Table d'Hote, a tiny French bistro (seats about 30) on 92nd just east of Madison.

Here's a link to photos of the place: http://bit.ly/chalqA

and to its menu: http://bit.ly/9QHyN5

They have a very moderately priced prix-fixe.
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 03:51 PM
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Another idea for the UWS/ Central park area might be Alice's Tea Cup - I would think it ideal for a 9 year old.
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 03:56 PM
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Alice's Tea Cup actually has 3 locations. Here is the link:
http://www.alicesteacup.com/

Not necessarily gourmet, but my nieces liked it.
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 04:09 PM
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Junejuly-

Alice's Tea Cup looks perfect for breakfast on Tuesday.

Thank you.
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Old Sep 6th, 2010, 04:55 PM
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In midtown try Ellen's Stardust Diner (on 50 or 51 and Broadway). It's a 1950s style diner, reasonably priced--and the wait staff are singers who perform throughout the day. It's lots of fun.
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Old Sep 7th, 2010, 04:56 AM
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Thank you to everyone who has responded so far. I appreciate all of the recommendations.
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Old Sep 7th, 2010, 05:50 AM
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I was in NYC last december and came across the Westway diner at 614 9th avenue. The food menu is extensive,the portions large, the service fast and efficient, but to me what was most impressive was it seemed to be where the NYPD did their rotation. I think there was one table with 8 uniforms, and another table with 2 detectives right across from them. I tell you I sure felt safe there!
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Old Sep 7th, 2010, 06:05 AM
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The Westway is near one of the precincts called Midtown North. There are over 35,000 cops in NYC.
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Old Sep 7th, 2010, 06:39 AM
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I recently went to an Italian restaurant on Front St. near South St. Seaport that I thought was great. It's called Barbarini. It's a small restaurant that is also part food market. My pasta was great, only compromised by the aroma of pastries and cookies baking in the oven in the same room!

Check out http://www.barbarinimercato.com/
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Old Sep 7th, 2010, 08:24 AM
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Our grandchildren all love eating in Chinatown.
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Old Sep 9th, 2010, 06:55 AM
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Thank you, everyone!!!

Do you think the Tenement Museum would be appropriate for a 9-year-old? I was also wondering which of the three different tours you would suggest.
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Old Sep 9th, 2010, 08:47 AM
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I suggest this book always when visiting NY -- ACCESS, NYC. The ACCESS guide books are layed out in a completely different way than other guide books. They cover a particular area of the city, street by street. You'll find things to do, hotels, restaurants shown in relationship to each other on a map of the area (ie. Upper East Side, Upper West Side, SoHo, Midtown, etc.) Its easy then to find restaurants or shopping close to your museum or your hotel or a particular theater. Each will have a small review with particulars such as phone, hours, address, pricing guide, subway stop and the like. I highly recommend. Just make sure you get a current edition. I believe 13E is the 2008 edition and that is the newest for NYC.

http://www.amazon.com/Access-New-Yor...4050707&sr=1-4
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Old Sep 9th, 2010, 01:04 PM
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Going in a different direction after the Met -
Catch the M86 Crosstown Bus and take a short ride through Central Park -
(see page 12 for a map)
http://www.mta.info/nyct/bus/schedule/manh/m086cur.pdf

And get off at Columbus and walk a block south to Kefi -
http://www.kefirestaurant.com/

They have a wonderful early dinner special if you are seated by 5:45

Then you could take the subway down to Times Square or wander the UWS a bit.


And, yes DEFINITELY, the Tenement museum tour would be great for a 9 year old. Any of the tours would be good. Your tour in in the same tenement building, just focusing on a different family or theme.
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