Archive for October 2008

Midtown Links (The Halloween Pumpkin Custard Edition)

Midtown Happy Hour: Smith’s Bar

If you like to eat, chances are you like to drink (read: a lot of you are freakin’ lushes), so I thought maybe it was time to introduce a happy hour column to the site. Every week we’ll post about a different bar in Midtown that fits the Midtown Lunch mentality: unhealthy food, not lame (unless it’s lame in a cool way), and most importantly… cheap. This week Mamacita goes to an ancient Midtown bar that has seen better days…

Smith's Bar

A look into the history of Smith’s Bar shows it has been in business for over 6 decades. That’s 11 presidencies. The historic façade has the rich neon beauty of New York in the 50s. Glowing vibrantly, its florescent sign dominates the corner of 8th Avenue and W. 44th Street. Alas the Dubya years were not kind to this bar and it changed ownership to a company that also owns the upscale lounges: Social, Social@Dunwoodie, Kanvas and Latitude. Smith’s new website informs us, “You haven’t been to New York until you’ve been to Smith’s.” As you know the Internet never lies. So as I’ve been living here for a while now it’s apparently time for me to stop in to confirm my residency!

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Are You Dressed As a Burrito Today?: Eater posted a photo of the huge line for free sandwiches at Pret earlier today.  But we're a little more interested in seeing photos of people dressed like burritos to get free food from Chipotle at 6 p.m. Photos of you (or your co-workers) are welcomed at

Crumbs & Lenny’s Both Continue With Their Expansion


The plywood has officially gone up for the new Crumbs on Broadway btw. 52+53rd that Cupcake Takes the Cake says will open at the end of the year.  They also mention another Crumbs going up on 54th and 3rd Ave.  I honestly can’t see how Midtown can support this crazy cupcake expansion.

And Lenny’s seems to be in the same boat…  Read more »

Vote For the Scariest Midtown Lunch of the Year

Scariest Midtown Lunch

Seeing as it’s Halloween, it’s time for the obligatory “Scariest Midtown Lunch post”.  Last year I asked for Chili dog recommendations (I still haven’t had one in Midtown yet) but this year I think I’ll open it up to you guys.  To some, every meal I eat in Midtown is scary- but there have been a few this year that stand out above the rest.  I have to say up front, I enjoyed every single one of these lunches… but even I admit that putting them one after another like this is kind of frightening. 

Here are the nominees for scariest lunch of 2008…

But wait there’s more…  

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Last Day For Bon Appetit Pop Up Cafe: It's the last day to go to the Bon Appetit Pop Up Cafe on 57th btw. 7+8th... and I might have to stop by because today's special is a lamb burger from Michael Psilakis (Kefi, Mia Dona, Anthos).  It's $10, but whatever... that dude is awesome.

Today’s Free Pret Lunch is Confirmed: This morning in the comments: "I just went over to the new Pret Location at 44th and 3rd. They’ve started giving out flyers for a 'free lunch'. Good till gone." Showing up after 1 p.m. without a flier has worked for some in the past, but there's no guarantee.

Kosher Halloween Party… or Ironic Typo?


This sign hung in the doorway of kosher lunch spot Mr. Broadway (on Broadway btw. 37+38th) would make a lot more sense if it was for today’s date… but I think it’s just a typo. No Halloween night costume party- just a kosher deli that will now be open as soon as Shabbat is over on Saturday nights.

Sombrero Cart Pretending to Be a Vendy Award Nominee

Midtown NYC Taco CartA very astute Lunch’er Wade noticed this bit of fraud the other day on the Mexican cart with the sombrero parked on 50th btw. 6+7th: “This cart has a sign up that it was a 2005 Vendy Award ‘nominee’. It certainly wasn’t a finalist that year (or any other year). Does this simply mean someone (a relative with a different last name, perhaps) nominated the cart? It’s tolerable, but not Vendy-worthy.”  Very curious indeed.  A look at the list of nominees from 2005 shows that there is no way anybody associated with this cart (which serves sub-par your-mom’s-taco-night style Mexican food) was nominated for a Vendy Award.  Does this mean there is a black market for Vendy Award nominee signs? Or maybe it fell off the Hallo Berlin Cart and this guy picked it up?  Either way, I think I’ll be sticking with the Mexican cart on 60th and 3rd (who may actually one day be nominated for a Vendy Award.)

Another Reason Not to Eat Lunch at Your Desk: Midtown Lunch has always been a strong proponent for getting out of the office for your full one hour lunch break, and our feelings are perfectly summed up by this graphic on Indexed.