PROFILE: Midtown Lunch’er “Evan”

Every Tuesday we turn over the site to a different Midtown Lunch’er for his or her recommendations for the best lunch in Midtown. Since Flatiron only gets one day a week in the sun (Fridays), every once in a while we head south a throw a bone to the lunchers that toil away south of 32nd Street. This week it’s Evan, a restaurant PR person with a surprisingly un-PR’ish list of favorite lunchtime restaurants.

Name: Evan

Age: 24

Occupation: Restaurant and Hospitality Public Relations

Where in Midtown do you work? Bullfrog & Baum; we’re in Flatiron on 23rd Street.

Favorite Kind of Food: Every genre has its own kind of amazing going for it, but I’m partial to Thai, Vietnamese, Southern Italian, and Indian.

Least Favorite Kind of Food: anything with okra – do not want.

Favorite Place(s) to Eat Lunch in Midtown: Kofoo for quick, cheap, delicious beef bibimbap; Pongsri (on 23rd btw. 6+7th) for solid Thai curries and spicy, bright meat salads; Eataly for tomato focaccia and the calamari salad with olives, capers, and crunchy celery; Iron Sushi (on 3rd btw. 30+31st) for chirashi; Maffei’s (on 22nd & 6th) for a solid Grandma slice or plain cheese New York style (also love the meatballs and garlicky broccoli), Tbsp (on 20th btw. 5+6th) for the vegetable sandwich on focaccia; Taim Mobile for the vegetarian platter or the Sabbich.

“Go-To” Lunch Place You and Your Coworkers Eat at Too Often? Kofoo (on 8th btw. 26+27th). It’s convenient, inexpensive, and all about flavorful, no-nonsense Korean food. The nice lady at the register knows my usual, too (beef bibimbap, extra kimchee).

Places you have discovered thanks to Midtown Lunch? Blue Dog (on 25th btw. 6+7th)! Solid sandwiches.

If you could work anywhere (just because of the lunch) where would it be and why? Chinatown! I used to live in that neighborhood and could absolutely eat Peking duck and roast pork, gnarly curries, noodle soups, and dumplings all day, every day.

Anything you’d like to ask the midtown lunch readers? Ramen and tacos between flatiron and 32nd… Where do you get ‘em?

Got an answer for Evan? Put it in the comments. Want to be next week’s Profiled: Midtown Lunch’er (or know somebody you’d like to nominate)? Email


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    I worked in Midtown East for four years, and am now at 25th and Park Ave South. Nice to see the thoughts of a Flatiron Luncher as I familiarize myself with the new terrain. First of all, Flatiron beats Midtown by a mile when it comes to lunch. It’s just true. The people are cooler, the food is tastier, the streets are kinder. Midtown is all grey, Flatiron is all tye-dye.

    So, as far as tacos, no idea, but this really good Mexican place a couple of blocks from my office makes a mean burrito and I’m sure their tacos are spot-on, as well. Choza Taquería on Madison between 27th and 28th. Check it out. And hit me up when you go, I’ll down that freakin’ burrito any day.

    • Agree that Flatiron has a little more color than Midtown! I’d rather lunch here any day.

      And Choza – I’ve actually been there and do like it; nice reco. Let’s go!

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      “Flatiron beats Midtown by a mile when it comes to lunch. It’s just true.”

      Isn’t that how this whole blog started up? Someone was all: “Hey, Midtown lunch SUCKS.”
      And someone smart was all: “I know! Let’s try to get people together to figure out what is actually edible up in this wasteland!”
      And someone else was all: “Cool.”

      Or is that just my romanticized version of events?

  • Hey fellow okra hater! Is Evan short for something?

    • Evanescence.

      You’ve reminded me I have okra in the freezer just waiting to be cornmealed and deep-fried.

    • Hey, okra haters unite! Who decided it was a good idea to eat that weird looking vegetable in the first place?

      Re: my name – nope, just Evan.

  • Did Maffei’s close? They were shut down last time I was in that area….

    • Sadly, Sandy might have killed the business – this was written up pre-hurricane. Every time I pass that corner (which is, like, every day) a little part of me dies.

    • I noticed it is still shuttered. I’m sad too. Dom rocks! Why would Sandy kill their biz? They had a significant remodel recently, even added a street ordering window.

  • Isnt Wahoo’s (fish tacos) down in the flatiron area?

    • Yeah, it’s on Park btw 24th and 25th, I believe. I tried their fish tacos (one regular and one Cajun) a few months ago. Fine, but nothing to write home about.

      • Wahoo’s is a good Cali-vibe place to stop in for a taco fix and a beer. Always a good option, and I still prefer it to the other local chain/upscale Mex options (like Shipotle, Qdoba, Dos Caminos, etc.). Uncle Moe’s on 19th between 5th/6th is also pretty good, if a bit pricey for basic Mex. And sometimes there’s a good taco truck parked on 18th or 19th at the east side of 6th.

  • Since when did Flatiron/Chelsea get lumped into midtown? I know ML has complained that the list of volunteers has died but, but jeez.

    If no one is volunteering, why not bring back some prior features with an update. New and phased out go-to’s, evolution of taste since last posting, etc.


  • oops, I didn’t read the note before the profile. My Bad!

    • No prob. I was the guy who recently didn’t realize that Flatiron stretches from around 8th Ave to Gramercy/Murray Hill, per the ML guidelines.

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    Not sure if the Calexico cart is still stationed on 24th and Broadway (they were there in the summer), but if so, they have good tacos.

  • A solid taco option (and probably closest to you!) is Great Burrito at 23rd and 6th. Solid, excellent traditional tacos, and the rest of the menu is tasty as well. Just ignore the pizza….

  • I also love southern style deep friend okra. It’s also great in Indian and Pakistani food. Bhindi Massala, anyone.

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