Please review my NYC restaurant choices

Old Mar 24th, 2009, 11:13 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 188
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Please review my NYC restaurant choices

My job is to research and reserve restaurants for several dinners with friends April 30-May 4. One foodie friend lives in the West Village and LOVES restaurants like Per Se. The other is VERY frugal and is an unadventureous eater. (She has still not recovered from the prices at Babbo last year) I must admit that I avoid raw or unusual food too. So here are what I have chosen for our trip the end of April (we're staying in the Times Square area)

ViceVersa--arrival night (prix fixe menu is $35)
DB Bistro Moderne (almost next to our hotel--pre theater)
Union Square Cafe (I am picking up this tab)

The 4th night is still open . Reserving for a Saturday (May 2) might mean I must book 30 days in advance- April 2--only a week plus until this deadline. What pressure!!

We do not want a scene place such as Buddakan or Spice Market. Perry Street is a possibility. Can you think somewhere which would appeal to a food snob and be reasonable at the same time?
JudyADenver is offline  
Old Mar 24th, 2009, 11:35 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,210
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Have you considered the Bar Room at The Modern? The menu is all small plates, so you can order as heavily or as lightly as you choose. It's quite possible to eat a fabulous meal there for under $60 per person if you don't get an expensive wine and stick to 2 individual plates and share apps and desserts. The food is Alsatian-inspired, and most everything is good. And it doesn't push the palate too much.

Another option to consider would be Blue Hill (in the Village), which is a truly excellent foodie restaurant that serves very simple food, albeit heavy on the vegetables. Ordering a la carte will cost about $65 per person; the tasting menu is more. Wines are egregiously expensive, however, so if you are big drinkers, this might not be the place.

Another place I dearly love is Tabla, but if you can't deal with Indian spices, it's not the place for you. Still, it's fusion and not really Indian cuisine upstairs ($64 for 3 courses); downstairs is much more Indian but not really traditional at $55 per person for the full everything included "menu" (which is quite a lot of food), or you can order individually for much less. It's easy to eat downstairs for $50 per person.

I know I'm probably pushing your upper price range with these choices. I also love Greek food, and there's a great neighborhood restaurant called Ethos on 3rd Ave between 34th and 33rd streets. If you get a simple grilled fish there to share and an extra side plus a greek salad, it's about $35 per person. They have many other choices, but I go for the fish. There are a lot of great neighborhood restaurnts in Manhattan that are still really good (I bet your frugal friend in the Village can name a couple down there).

10 Downing isn't terribly expensive (it's a new restaurant in the Village) and just got a pretty positive review in the Times. Everyone also raves about The Little Owl, and it's not terribly expensive either, though its small size ensures that it's still a tough reservation to get.

Finally, you may be surprised at the availability of reservations. I got a table at The Modern at 8pm on a Saturday about 5 days in advance recently. Tourism is down, and people just aren't packing the restaurants as they used to.

Of the places you've chosen, I think you'll find DB Bistro Moderne to be the most "expensive" for what you get (in my opinion). But it's good. It's quite easy to spend more there than at Union Square Cafe.
doug_stallings is offline  
Old Mar 24th, 2009, 01:32 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We prefer Gotham over Union Square.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Old Mar 25th, 2009, 03:53 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,930
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
For French you might try the $35 prixe fixe at:
www.benoit-newyork.com, an Alain Ducasse bistro
altho I think the ambience is a tad more.
Rhea58 is offline  
Old Mar 25th, 2009, 07:16 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,715
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You've gotten a lot of good ideas here. I'll just say it seems weird to me that you have a member of your group who actually lives in NYC and is a proclaimed foodie yet you're not letting that person choose any of the restaurants. I would let him/her pick the 4th place with the understanding that it has to cost so much/person. If I'm misunderstanding and that friend is not part of your dining group, I'd still at least ask him/her for some recos. Have you had a look at the where to eat in 2009 in NY Magazine? http://nymag.com/restaurants/wheretoeat/2009/
mclaurie is offline  
Old Mar 25th, 2009, 07:37 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,712
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I just want to add that I really like Vice Versa and think it's a great choice!
Austin is offline  
Old Mar 25th, 2009, 08:13 AM
  #7  
mdn
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 298
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Agree with Doug that DB Bistro may disappoint - not because the food isn't good but because most people I know came away thinking they got ripped off / it was too expensive for what they got.
I like Gramercy Tavern more than Union Sq. Cafe and Gotham. The Tavern area at Gramercy is cheaper & more casual than the main dining room. But any of those 3 would be good.
mdn is offline  
Old Mar 25th, 2009, 12:52 PM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 188
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Mclaurie--yes, it is a little weird that the Newyorker in our group is not making the choices. He said that between our limited budget and unadventureous palates, that we should make the choices and he will go anywhere.

Glad to hear about DB Bistro. I chose it because it's next door to our hotel (Iroquois) and would be so convenient pre theater. Maybe I reserve ViceVersa for our pre theater meal and go to Gramercy Tavern on our arrival night. My only concern about Gramercy Tavern is not being able to make reservations.

I will definitely check out Benoit's menu too.
JudyADenver is offline  
Old Mar 25th, 2009, 01:09 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 2,804
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Will echo similar comments regarding DB Bistro; I had a good meal there--but it's not a very "warm" restaurant. It struck me as something more fitting a business dinner than a dinner out with friends.

I think Red Cat, a restaurant in Chelsea, might fit the bill for a dinner with a foodie and a non-foodie. Entrees $20-30 in range.
http://www.theredcat.com/redcat.html
Katie_H is offline  
Old Mar 25th, 2009, 04:58 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,715
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
DB Bistro has a pre theater dinner for $45 so I think everyone saying it's overpriced may not be thinking of the pre theater mneu. I think Doug's suggestion of the Modern Bar is a good one. You can make a reservation at Gramercy Tavern, just not in the bar room in front with the less pricey menu.
mclaurie is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Gail_Europe
United States
32
Aug 20th, 2016 06:06 AM
millie2112
United States
22
Sep 21st, 2010 08:46 AM
benitaswan
United States
7
Jun 4th, 2010 11:04 AM
Reg
United States
6
Aug 16th, 2002 04:38 AM
fred
United States
13
Apr 27th, 2002 07:30 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


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 05:14 PM.