Near Walter Kerr Theatre & Other Sugessions

We’re headed to NY to see Springsteen in early November along with a few friends. We’d greatly appreciate some good but not heavy eating ideas for the day and night of the show (We are staying in midtown and flying in the night before). We will also have a Saturday free for dinner and would appreciate any suggestions that you would be willing to share for places that are special or different/better than what we can get in LA. An awesome bakery suggestion would be appreciated too. We’re not thinking of tasting menus or lots of courses for this trip, but are grateful for any input.

(I have been reading the board and other sources, but am having trouble nailing this down and figuring out what may be hype).

Many thanks in advance,

Midtown, I’d go back to Wu Liang Ye if it hasn’t gone downhill or been surpassed by some other nearby Sichuan place.

You’re right smack in the middle of the Theater District. A minefield littered with culinary bombs, but if you choose carefully, you’ll come out very satisfied. Here are some suggestions for the day/night of the show.

  • Bea
  • Margon
  • B Squared
  • Mercato
  • Burger & Lobster
  • Los Tacos

(Not all in Midtown)

  • Nerai
  • Nur
  • Atoboy or JungSik (sister restaurants, with the former being more casual than the latter)
  • Agern
  • Atla (not to be confused with Alta)
  • Salinas
  • Porteno
  • Merakia

Mah-Ze-Dahr Bakery

Doesn’t get any more awesome than MZD.

It was never on the hill, much less up it.

So many better Sichuan places in/around Midtown. Szechwan Gourmet, Land of Plenty, Lan Sheng, Cafe China, etc.

After a Sunday matinee last week, we had dinner at Ortzi, close to Times Square on West 41st St. It’s Chef Jose Garces’s restaurant that focuses on Basque cuisine. Delicious food, outstanding service, and pleasing ambiance.

Ortzi Photos

For your Saturday evening, you might want to consider Aquavit, in Midtown on E. 54th St. While there are two tasting menus, there is also a 3-course prix-fixe. Stellar Scandinavian cuisine, polished service, and lovely, quiet ambiance.

Photos from our most recent dinner at Aquavit in June.

My Blog
My Flickr

Good to see that Chef Bengtsson is still cooking interesting and outstanding fare.

A few weeks ago, I happened upon the episode of Mike Colameco’s Real Food devoted to Aquavit taped after the restaurant received the 2nd Michelin star. Chatting with Chef Bengtsson is interspersed with watching her prepare different dishes. Her self-effacing manner is endearing. For those who might be interested in seeing it, here’s the episode:

We walked by Aquavit a couple of weeks ago when we were heading towards Nerai for dinner. The place surprisingly did not look all that packed. It’s good to know that they are still going strong. Always been a fan of Bengtsson.

This is going on ten years ago, but I went to Wu Liang Ye with a regular and had a great meal of ox tongue and tripe, dan dan noodles, pan-seared pork dumplings, double-cooked bacon with spicy capsicum, camphor tea-smoked duck, and sauteed string beans “with Yibin City Spiced.” The style was different from the Sichuan places I go to at home, and those were still my favorite dan dan noodles.

That’s, no doubt, due in part to the overall weakness of Sichuan cuisine in the Bay Area.

Maybe. China Village has had some great chefs off and on.

Where do you go for Sichuan in LA?

I’d rather not say to avoid the appearance of any conflicts of interests.

That said, I would post your query on the LA board, and no doubt you will get plenty of recommendations, with maybe 3 or 4 being some of the better Sichuan food in the Western Hemisphere. BC / Toronto included.

Thank you very much for the suggestions. I will start looking into the menus and other available information. For the avoidance of doubt, should any of the more well know places like Red Rooster worth being on the contemplation list for our free Saturday? (I’m mostly asking others in the group are a bit more into names). We have during the day open in addition to dinner.

Ipse, I hold your LA Board input in the highest regard and was hoping that you would reply here - so thank you. If you have any places on your much appreciated suggestions lists that you like better or are more “special”, I’ll give them extra weight.

Thanks again! All input and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

From my list up above, if I had to choose just one place to have a meal, it would be Nur. Which isn’t to say that Nur is my favorite restaurant in Manhattan, but just from that list it would be Nur, followed closely by Agern (but you mentioned an aversion to tasting menus so that might not be the best option for you given that I think Agern is best enjoyed via its tasting menus).

Thanks so much for the additional input. We have a lot of valuable advice to consider! I’m definitely not adverse to tasting menus in general - with a lot of dining out days in November (including NY, Boston and a couple of special occasions in LA), we were thinking to do avoid them in NY. That said, I will definitely check out the menus and change the spouse’s opinion if needed :). Thanks again. (Your bakery suggestion is firmly on the to do list.)

I just got back from a quick trip to NYC, and if you get a chance, make a trip to downtown and go to Cervo.

Get whatever mackerel prep is on the menu that night, and make sure to try the lamb burger which comes topped with (of all things!) luscious anchovies.

On Cervo’s menu, are the dishes starting with the swordfish main portions? If so, the apps are expensive, which is what’s happening a lot in New York lately (mostly due to the exorbitant cost of commercial rent, I think), but the mains are not bad.