This is an old-school Italian spot in every sense. It’s been open since 1932, and it’s one big room with big tables and white tablecloths - so it feels like the kind of place where you’d eat with some 1960s ad execs, or before catching Our Town or Hello, Dolly! on Broadway. The service is friendly, and while the menu is full of classics like a caesar salad and chicken, veal, and shrimp parmigiana, the steak happens to be very good, with a thick, crispy char on the outside. Get one the next time you have a group meal planned with your in-laws, or you need to eat alone at the bar after a long day in Midtown. (Pro tip: the bar has free peanuts.)
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The Empellón in MIdtown is bigger and fancier than either of the Empellóns downtown, and it’s good to know about if you work in the area.
Tsushima is a perfectly fine sushi spot in Midtown. It won’t blow your mind, but it might come in handy if you need something last-minute.
The Polynesian is a tiki-themed rooftop cocktail bar in Midtown from the people behind Carbone and The Grill.
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Razza is a wood-fired pizza spot in Jersey City that’s well worth a trip from New York. Or from anywhere else.
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Bamonte’s is a red-sauce Italian spot that’s been open in Williamsburg since 1900, and things here don’t seem to have changed much since then.
Patrizia’s Of Williamsburg
Patrizia’s is a fairly standard neighborhood Italian restaurant in Williamsburg, and they offer a $50 prix fixe that’s popular for birthdays.
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