Best Restaurants Near Carnegie Hall

Where to eat before or after a show
November 21, 2017
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by Zagat Staff

Whether you're looking for high-end Greek, imaginative French or seeking out a laid-back taqueria, these are the top spots to visit if you're headed to a show at Carnegie Hall. 

Jams
West 50s · $$$
Food 3.7 · Decor 3.7 · Service 3.7

Jonathan Waxman’s revival of his '80s-era Californian gets mixed reviews ( “delish” vs. “meh” ), though most agree the “famous” roast chicken is “as good as you've heard” ; a “lovely” airy space in Midtown’s 1 Hotel Central Park and “fun bar area” , are reasons to hope he works out the “kinks.”
Marea
Italian · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

“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 4.0

“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.”
Nobu Fifty Seven
Japanese · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.3

This “over-the-top” Midtown branch of Nobu Matsuhisa’s Japanese-Peruvian powerhouse continues to draw a “happening” crowd with “knowledgeable” servers providing “standout” specialties in an “expansive” upstairs dining space; the scene is “loud” but “alluring” , especially “if you can find someone to treat you.”
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.
Tacuba
Latin American · West 50s · $$
Food 4.3 · Decor 3.9 · Service 4.0

Chef Julian Medina (Toloache, Yerba Buena) has some “fun” with these “cool” Mexicans where highlights include “excellent” guac, “interesting” tacos and “killer” margaritas; a “festive” crowd and “spacious” digs make them well suited to “group” outings.
Le Bernardin
French · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.9 · Decor 4.8 · Service 4.9

Prepare to dine on “a higher plane” at this “dazzling” Midtown “star” where Eric Ripert’s “world-class” tasting menus highlight “transcendent” French seafood, earning it No. 1 Food honors in NYC for the eighth year in a row; a “deep” wine list, “exemplary” staff and “soigné” surrounds further justify the “sky-high” tabs, so for a “dream-come-true” meal, this is “as good as it gets.”
The Modern
American · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

“Reliably superb” French–New American cuisine “as modern as the art” is the deal at Danny Meyer’s “effortlessly chic” eatery inside MoMA, where the “tranquil” dining room boasts “lovely” sculpture garden views and service is “impeccable” ( “refreshing” no-tipping policy notwithstanding); such “high-end sophistication” is unsurprisingly “pricey” , but the “more casual” front bar area is “easier on the wallet.”
Estiatorio Milos
Greek · West 50s · $$$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.3

A “class act” , this “glorious” Midtown Greek specializes in “fresh-as-it-gets” seafood served up in a “cavernous” white-on-white space that gets especially “energetic” at lunch; “by-the-ounce” pricing can add up ( “buying your own boat may be less expensive” ), but the prix fixe options are a relative “bargain.”
Benoit New York
French · West 50s · $$$
Food 4.1 · Decor 4.1 · Service 4.1

“Bringing France across the pond” , Alain Ducasse’s “likable” Midtown bistro stays “on target” serving a “très bien” mix of Gallic classics and updated plates in “attractive” revamped quarters with a spiffy pearl-white look and a “Parisian feel” ; prices may skew “high” , but its many fans deem it “a keeper.”
Quality Italian
Italian · West 50s · $$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.1 · Service 4.3

A “home run” from the folks at Quality Meats, this Midtown double-decker caters to the “expense-account” and "special occasion" crowd with “memorable” steaks and Italian fare (notably the “epic” chicken parm pizza) served by an “accommodating” team; though the decibels in the “lofty” space are “not for an intimate meal” , all that “high energy” suggests they’re “doing something right” here.
Loi Estiatorio
Greek · West 50s · $$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 3.7 · Service 4.1

“High-end Greek” cuisine is chef Maria Loi’s signature at her Midtown namesake, where the “out-of-this-world” menu centers on seafood “done to perfection” set down by staffers who “want you to be happy” ; while it “can get expensive” , loyal fans liken it to “a tiny vacation.”
Michael's
American · West 50s · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

“Media titans” and other “heavy hitters” collect at this “classy” Midtowner that’s known more for its breakfast and lunch “power” scenes than its “fresh” , “premium-priced” Californian fare and “pro” service; “relaxed” dinners come “without the hot crowd” , but there’s always the “lovely” room’s “fresh flowers and art” to look at.