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Vegetarian-friendly but not exclusively vegetarian restaurants

Hi all,

As a "foodie" who mostly eats vegetarian but isn't much a fan of "vegetarian restaurants," I've been thinking...

What are the best restaurants in NYC that are vegetarian-friendly but NOT exclusively vegetarian? I don't necessarily just mean restaurants that have vegetarian options...I mean restaurants where the vegetarian options are really good, actually showcase the chef's style, and are perhaps even stars of the menu...rather than just being "passable."

The best example of this type of restaurant that I can think of is Scarpetta. Not only do they have a separate vegetarian menu, but two of the most famous dishes - the polenta and the spaghetti tomato basil - are vegetarian. Another example is Alta - so many excellent dishes there happen to be vegetarian.

Some examples of restaurants that are the opposite of this theme - Tertulia (the highlight and specialty of the menu is Iberico ham), The Breslin (again, the specialty is meat). Having eaten at both of these places, my experience is that, as a vegetarian, you largely miss out on what makes the restaurant so special.

So - what can you think of? What are your favorite vegetarian-friendly-but-not-vegetarian restaurants in NYC? What foodie destinations have truly great dishes that happen to be vegetarian?

Jan 02, 2012
nb09 in Manhattan

Help me decide: Pulqueria, Tertulia, ABC Kitchen, or ???

Ever-helpful Chowhounders! Help me make a decision!

Here's the deal: taking the girlfriend out for a cocktail and then dinner tomorrow night. We have no reservations, BUT - I have time before our date, and am planning on going early (maybe even an hour early), to put our names on the list and have a drink at the bar before she gets there.

A little about us: we're in our 20s, love trying new places, love small plates, are into great cocktails. Atmosphere is not the only factor - but when possible, we do really appreciate a beautiful/sexy/intimate space.

Some places we love: Casa Mono, Alta, Scarpetta (but not really the ambience), Freemans, Spotted Pig, Milk + Honey, Angel's Share...

Here are the three options I'm considering:

1) ??? + Tertulia - she LOVES tapas, and I love Seamus Mullen, so this is obviously very appealing...but I'm not sure where we could get a cocktail beforehand - maybe Minetta Tavern? Are there any other good places to get a drink close by? (Little Branch doesn't open until 7.)

And also, perhaps more importantly - do you think I could get there an hour early, put our names on the list for dinner...and then when she arrives, we could leave and have a cocktail nearby, and come back when our table is ready?

2) Apotheke + Pulqueria - also appealing, especially because Apotheke is right upstairs, so we could have a cocktail at Apotheke and then move to Pulqueria. But something about the way the "scene" has been described at Pulqueria sort of puts me off...we like a lively boisterous scene, but a DJ? Really?? Just afraid it might attract the same kind of scene-chasing, B+T crowd we are not too fond of...

3) Rose Bar + ABC Kitchen - obviously more expensive, but I'm okay with that. Been wanting to try ABC Kitchen for a long time, and Rose Bar's decor is perfectly up our alley (and I'm imagining that if we went around 6 or 6:30, we wouldn't have an issue at the door). But I've heard negative things about the bar area at ABC Kitchen, which is likely where we'd end up without a reservation...

So, wise Chowhounds, any thoughts? Or, do you have a totally different recommendation you'd like to make? I'm open!

Thanks in advance!!

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Casa Mono
52 Irving Place, New York, NY 10003

Spotted Pig
314 W 11th St, New York, NY 10014

Minetta Tavern
113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

Angel's Share
8 Stuyvesant St, New York, NY 10003

Scarpetta
355 West 14th Street, New York, NY 10014

Apotheke
9 Doyers St, New York, NY 10013

ABC Kitchen
35 E 18th St, New York, NY 10003

Pulqueria
11 Doyers St, New York, NY 10038

Tertulia
359 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Dec 15, 2011
nb09 in Manhattan

Ann Arbor - An Updated Survey of the best it has to offer

everyday lunch (and everyday cook) has also closed, sadly...

Jul 13, 2008
nb09 in General Midwest Archive

great indian food (dinner) in manhattan

this is a topic that gets discussed with some frequency on here, but the answers seem to vary and change somewhat often, so i figured i'd ask.

my girlfriend and i are looking for a great indian restaurant in manhattan. either north or south (or both!) is fine. we are more into traditional cuisine than experimentation or fusion. it doesn't have to be cheap, but we don't really care about atmosphere or service. doesn't have to be fancy at all.

i've looked around on the boards but most of the places people recommend most often--devi, tabla, etc--seem a little too innovative/funky/"inspired". we are kind of looking for out-of-this-world comfort food--really, really, really good chana masala, samosas, etc (we are vegetarians, for the record, but we don't need a lot of options--just a couple of really good dishes will suffice).

chola and dawat both seem like possibilities, but i'd really like to hear people's input/suggestions.

(semi-related tip for brooklyn hounds: lately we've been doing take-out from kinara in park slope when we're craving indian, since the food is reliably decent and the take-out is a great deal - app, entree, rice + naan for $12.)

EDIT: thanks so much for the suggestions so far - just to clarify, we are looking for a place to eat dinner.

Feb 11, 2008
nb09 in Manhattan

ann arbor: best five meals of 07

just out of curiosity...i noticed someone in MSP posted asking for "your best 5 meals in MSP in 2007" and i thought it'd be fun to do the same for ann arbor.

so, any thoughts?

Jan 18, 2008
nb09 in General Midwest Archive