PROFILE: Midtown Lunch’er “Shayna”

Every Tuesday I turn over the site to a different Midtown Lunch’er for his or her recommendations for the best lunch in Midtown. Today’s Lunch’er is a Marketing Manager at the Wall St. Journal who can’t wait for it to get warmer so she can eat outside at Bryant Park.  I think she might also be friends with Superman

Name: Shayna


Marketing Manager & Blogger (

Where in Midtown do you Work?:
The Wall Street Journal – 45th & 6th

Favorite Kind of Food:
Tie between BBQ and Mexican. Growing up in Atlanta, I was surrounded by a lot of great BBQ places. Sure, people have their favorites in NYC, but it’s just not the same when the food isn’t served with a side of Southern charm by a waitress calling you “Sugar!”

Least Favorite Kind of Food:

Favorite Place(s) to Eat Lunch in Midtown: 1 – Pad See Ew at Pam Real Thai Encore at 47th btw. 9+10th. This is my favorite Pad See Ew in the city. The sauce is so flavorful, and the huge portion is only $6.50. Definitely worth the walk over to 9th Ave. 2 – Falafel over rice from the cart at 48th & Park.  The falafel is fresh and is served with rice, lettuce/tomato, and chickpeas that were prepared in a really tasty sauce. All of that plus a can of soda for only 5 bucks. 3 – Hunan chicken with brown rice at Ho Yip at 45th & 5th.  The dish has great flavor and doesn’t skimp on veggies.

The “go-to” lunch place you and your co-workers eat at too often: Cranberry Deli on 45th btw. B’way+6th. I remember going there when I was visiting NYC with my family a long time ago. I was fascinated by the concept of so many different types of food all under one roof. Let me tell you, after being innundated by these delis for the last 5 years, the novelty quickly wore off. I will say that Cranberry may be one tiny notch up from the rest of the delis in the immediate area. You have to choose wisely if you do end up there, though. My go-to orders: The udon and soba soups, and sandwich #15 – grilled chicken with roasted red peppers, mozzarella, and pesto.

Place you discovered thanks to Midtown Lunch (if any)? House of Pita on 48th b/t 5th & 6th. It was a sad day when I went there to get lunch and saw it had closed. While it wasn’t the best falafel I’ve had, I really loved their hummus and salad selections…especially the Israeli and bean salads. I heard they opened a location on 8th Ave. Unfortunately for me, it’s a little bit more of a hike, so I won’t be able to make it there as often as the original location.

If you could work anywhere (just because of the lunch) where would it be and why? I’d live in Paris so I could order a galette oeuf fromage from a crepe stand every day for lunch. It’s a buckwheat crepe filled with Emmenthal cheese and a fried egg. This thing puts even the best egg & cheese on a roll to shame.

Is there anything you’d like to ask the Midtown Lunch readers?: I work a few blocks from Bryant Park and love eating lunch there when the weather is nice. Aside from the obvious options (‘wichcraft, Chipotle, Pret a Manger, etc), does anyone have any suggestions for great (and maybe lesser known) places to pick up lunch before heading to the park?

I too can’t wait for Bryant Park to become a lunch’ing option again.  For a pretty good list of lunches in the immediate vicinity, check out my Fashion Week Guide to Midtown Lunch’ing around Bryant Park.  What’s your favorite Bryant Park lunch?  Feel free to post it as a comment below…

And as always, if you want to be the next Profiled: Midtown Lunch’er, or you’d like to nominate somebody in your office, email me at


  • I, too, cannot stand Indian food. I hate to stink of curry.

    Are you single?

  • Set aside for a moment her dislike of Indian food. Have any of you actually read her her blog?

    That’s all I’m going to say.

  • Which picture of her is suffering from vertical distortion, the one on this site, or the one on her site (presumably the original)?

  • @ TXC – Sorry, that was my fault. I fixed it.

  • Not everyone likes indian, especially in the context of lunch, unless you can take a nap in the afternoon at work!

    She’s got great taste — check out her website listed above.

  • What do you mean good taste? Buddha Bar is trash. If you’re going to go with a cavernous hyped up Asian fusion overpriced mega restaurant that has a giant Buddha, at least go to Buddakan. It’s food is actually good. Buddha Bar is all just atmosphere, and even that is fairly weak compared to the one in Paris.

    As far as Bryant Park, go to Starwich on 38th and 6th. Better than ‘wichcraft, and no crazy lines. Great selection.

  • Homefront Deli – 41st & Madison,
    Cafe Charlie – 40th btw 5th & Madison,
    Cafe Zaiya – 41st btw 5th & Madison
    Devon & Blakely – 5th btw 40th & 41st,
    Crestanello (sp?) – 5th btw 40th & 41st,
    Le Pain Quotidien – 40th & 6th,
    Fashion Soup – ??

  • i second chris for cafe charlie. i only get the stirfry but it is good and i love that i pick the sauce, veggies and it is made fresh in front of me.

  • Pad See Ew from Pam’s is my absolute favorite too! Love it!

  • BBQ & Atlanta go together like the midwest and low calorie meals. Georgia will never be a BBQ spot…try NC.

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