PROFILE: Downtown Lunch’ers Yen & Michi

As is customary here on Midtown Lunch, every Tuesday we’ll profile a different lunch’er and get their recommendations for places to eat in Downtown NYC. This week, we have lunch’ers Yen and Michi who are architects that sideline in food blogging on Lunch with Front Studio. They try not to play favorites with lunch destinations, or with what they will eat.

 width=Names: Yen Ha and Michi Yanagishita

Occupation: Architects

Where you work: We have our own firm: Front Studio Architects

Age: No spring chickens – 36 and 37

Favorite Kinds of Food: Salty kinds

Least Favorite Foods: Foods that start with the letter “Q”…  Uhh joking aside, perhaps foods you need to flex your foodie machismo muscles for?  I don’t really know what that means.  Poorly cooked foods?  We don’t really like ruling things out.  You never know what you’ll end up liking (or disliking)

Favorite Lunches Downtown: Shanghai Café for their soup dumplings and rice cakes; Roast pork with rice and beans at La Nueva  Conquista come immediately to mind.

The “go-to” lunch place you and your co-workers eat at too often: We try not to repeat our lunch location for at least 6 weeks, so it’s kind of impossible for us to eat somewhere too often.  But probably the closest to always being in the mood for, or a no-brainer would probably be Shanghai Café.

Places downtown you discovered thanks to Midtown Lunch: We have a “to-go” list and note down all those FiDi street carts (in particular – Biryani House) you guys feature, but haven’t made it to any yet.

Dream job location, purely for lunch purposes, and why: We’re pretty happy where we are!  We straddle Soho, Nolita and Chinatown – there’s a lot of options.  We would love to temporarily trade with someone in East Village perhaps for a month or three…

Anything you’d like to ask the downtown Midtown Lunch readers?: Does eating a proper lunch away from your desk, increase the quality of your workday?

I know I always feel better about my day if I don’t desk dine, and on the days that I eat things like street meat, I’m sure my co-workers do too. What do you all think? And as always, if you would like to be next week’s Profiled Lunch’er (or know somebody you’d like to nominate), email us at



  • I agree about taking a real lunch making your day better.

    Also, I love your blog, I’ve been following it for a while! Since you’re so close to my office, it gives me ideas for my lunches sometimes.

  • I will third taking a lunch out of cube, desk or what have you. So long as you aren’t staring at a screen.

    EV is not a bad second location.. what the farthest y’all have ever gone for lunch? I do forays to MSP Shake Shack sometimes…!

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    Taking a real lunch break definitely improves your workday, but I’d also like to suggest taking a gym break and then eating at your desk. I do it once or twice a week, and it’s just as good as a lunch break.

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