Best Restaurants and Bars Near Columbus Circle

Where to eat near Time Warner Center and Central Park's southwest corner
November 2, 2017
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by Zagat Staff

Whether you’re passing through on your way to Lincoln Center or finishing up a stroll through Central Park, Columbus Circle has long been a fantastic place to take in the sweeping views over a delicious meal. Here are the best spots to dine and to drink in and around this iconic Midtown landmark.

The Office NYC
Bar · West 50s · $$$$

Tucked into The Aviary, an offshoot of the Chicago bar by Alinea’s Grant Achatz and Nick Kokonas, this rarified spot on the 35th floor of the Mandarin Oriental serves high-end cocktails, ultra-vintage spirits and fancy bites (which can also be ordered as a playful tasting menu with drink pairings). The richly designed space has a clubby, old-time style, and reservations are recommended.
Jean-Georges
French · West 60s · $$$$
Food 4.8 · Decor 4.7 · Service 4.8

“Time after time” , Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s CPW flagship “lives up to its billing” with “exquisite” New French cuisine that “dazzles your palate” served “with balletlike precision” in “a serene, luxurious” setting that requires a jacket; it’ll cost a “king’s ransom” to settle the tab, but those “willing to splurge” can count on an “unforgettable” meal.
Vida Verde
Mexican · West 50s · $$$

The owners of cocktail bar Tanner Smiths and chef Hugo Orozco have created this ingredient-driven Midtown Mexican set in a bi-level space whose design is inspired by Mexican street markets. The cocktail program focuses on mezcals and tequilas, and the wine list highlights organic and biodynamic selections.
Marea
Italian · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.6

“Excellence abounds” at Michael White’s Italian “star” on Central Park South, where the “adventurous” seafood and “heavenly” housemade pastas “never fail to wow” ; the “impeccable” service matches the “sleek” , “convivial” setting – as well as the “power broker” prices (lunchtime set menus are a comparative “steal” ).
Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill
Sushi · West 50s · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

“First-class” fish in “creative and classic” combos makes for “dazzling” sushi at these Japanese “go-tos” by the brothers Bromberg; you’ll also find brasserie favorites (like “surprisingly good fried chicken” ) at some locales, and while the SoHo original is more “minimalist” than the rest (minus the Hudson Eats counter), all will cost you a “chunk of change.”
Turnstyle Underground Market
Food Court · West 50s · $

Beneath Columbus Circle, this ambitious food hall and market in a modern, completely refurbished section of the subway station (with no fare required) features vendors providing everything from grilled-cheese sandwiches to savory salteña pastries plus a host of sweets.
Per Se
French · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.7 · Service 4.7

Thomas Keller’s Time Warner Center “high temple” of French–New American cuisine is “truly an event” given the “fabulous” tasting menu, “unimpeachable” service and “posh” , jackets-required surrounds overlooking Central Park; while the “through-the-roof” set price may limit visits to “once in a blue moon” , those of more limited means “love the à la carte option” in the lounge.
Porter House Bar and Grill
Steakhouse · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

They “know how to cook a steak” at Michael Lomonaco's “chic” Time Warner Center chophouse, where the beef is “juicy and fork-tender” and the “modern” surroundings get a boost from “spectacular” Central Park views; “caring” servers take the edge off the predictably “big checks.”
Asiate
American · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.8 · Service 4.6

“Elegant, calm” surroundings and “spectacular views” over Central Park make an “incomparable” backdrop for the “exquisite” New American cuisine at this “special-occasion” go-to “atop the Mandarin Oriental” ; the prices are equally “out of this world” (dinner is prix fixe–only), but “stellar” service helps take the sting out – and the 'express' lunch is a “steal.”
Landmarc
French · West 50s · $$$
Food 3.9 · Decor 3.8 · Service 3.9

An “extensive” menu, “reliable” French-leaning fare and “big tables” make Marc Murphy’s “upbeat” TWC bistro “good for large groups” ; you’ll find “gorgeous views” and an after-work bar scene, but be warned: brunch is a “stroller-fest.”
Bar Masa
Bar · West 50s · $$$$