Theater District's Upscale Dining

March 28, 2017
·
by Zagat Staff

Live lavishly by dining at one of these upscale Theater District restaurants.

Aureole
Seafood · West 40s · $$$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.5

An “oasis of calm” in Times Square, Charlie Palmer’s “classy” flagship “sets the bar” with “exquisite” New American fare “presented like art” by a staff “with finesse” ; the “beautiful” , “modern” dining room is a natural for “special occasions” and while dinner tabs are “over-the-top” , lunch is a relative “bargain.”
Wolfgang's Steakhouse
Steakhouse · West 40s · $$$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

“Masterfully done” steaks “with all the trimmings” lure “business” types and other “enthusiastic carnivores” to these “high-energy” chop shops also touted for their “outstanding” wine lists, “old-school” service and “awesome ceilings” in the Park Avenue outlet; “holler” -worthy noise and “sticker-shock” tabs notwithstanding, it’s a “top contender” in its genre.
db Bistro Moderne
French · West 40s · $$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.3

“Still a favorite” in the Theater District, Daniel Boulud’s “energetic bistro” delivers a “top-drawer” French menu led by that “irresistible” foie gras–stuffed burger in a “sleek” setting; “assured service” that’s “mindful” of curtain time further helps justify the “hefty” price tag.
Esca
Seafood · West 40s · $$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

“Heaven for fish lovers” , this “classy” Hell’s Kitchen Italian from the Batali-Bastianich-Pasternack team crafts “thoughtfully prepared” seafood and “irresistible” pastas in “relaxed” surrounds; “accommodating” service, “excellent” wines and a relatively “convenient” pre-theater location further justify the “high tab.”
Oceana
Seafood · West 40s · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.4

“First-class” fish is the hook at this “fancy” Rock Center seafood spot, whose “huge” , “civilized” space includes a “lively” bar and a “pleasant” patio, all overseen by an “aim-to-please” crew; “expense-account” –ready prices have many reserving it for “entertaining clients” , though the pre-theater prix fixes are a comparative “bargain.”
Triomphe
French · West 40s · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.4

A “real find” in the Theater District, this all-day French “jewel box” in the Iroquois Hotel turns out “excellent” cuisine in “pleasing” presentations; the “superb service” and “civilized” surrounds help take the sting out of “expensive” prices.
Hakkasan New York
Chinese · West 40s · $$$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.3

“Spectacular” Shanghai-chic surrounds “transport you” away from the Theater District at this “massive” branch of the London-born chain, where the “modern” Cantonese-inspired fare and “epic” dim sum also “impress” ; “fabulously expensive” prices are part of the “high-end” package, but after a few “fancy” cocktails you might “not mind.”
The Lambs Club
American · West 40s · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.1

A “clubby sanctuary” , Geoffrey Zakarian’s art deco New American “stands out” in the Theater District with “swanky-in-red” decor and a “fabulous fireplace” setting the stage for “equally impressive” fare and “polished” service; it “nails” the “elegant throwback” feel, “but it’s not cheap.”
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.”
Bar Americain
American · West 50s · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.1

Bobby Flay “doesn’t disappoint” at this Midtown New American offering “inventive” yet “accessible” cuisine in “big, open” surrounds complete with a “slick” (if “noisy” ) bar; though you’ll pay a “premium” , “prompt service” and a “convenient location” make it “perfect for pre-theater.”
Sushi of Gari 46
Sushi · West 40s · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 3.5 · Service 4.1

The “out-of-body” omakase experience “never fails to amaze” at these Japanese “standard-bearers” from Gari Sugio, long known for their “sublime bites” of “imaginative sushi” ; the “cramped” quarters and “plain decor” are less impressive, but regulars advise “just open your wallet” and “eat at the bar.”
Quality Meats
Steakhouse · West 50s · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.3

A “steakhouse for the modern era” , this “energetic” Midtowner “proves itself” with “really solid” beef plus more “offbeat” sides and apps served in “hipper than average” surroundings; “high” prices are a given, but you do “pay for quality.”