Recession Restores Restaurant Week

29 January 2009

When I first moved to NYC forever and ever ago Restaurant Week was a twice yearly coveted opportunity for a regular ‘ol New Yorker and/or newbie to get a taste of the good life.

On a freezing cold night two winters ago, I went to Lure Fishbar with my dinner date of the month. We were seated and given a pre-fixe menu? Wait. What? Where’s the real menu? “Oh, it’s restaurant week,” the hostess coyly explained. “Oh. No thank you. We’ll have the regular menu,” he replied. “We don’t really do restaurant week.” And honestly, we didn’t. Don’t. In fact, I had all but forgot about Restuarant Week for at least three years. My poor graduate school days were a distant memory – well, the school part – so when all my friends were suddenly hyped up about Restaurant Week Winter 2009, I was pleasantly surprised, until… 

Excited to see what exclusive NYC cuisine I could taste, I browsed the participant list surprised to find that almost every restaurant I’ve ever heard of now participates in Restaurant Week! Srsly? Looking through the list I saw Dos Cominos is now considered a taste of the good life! Oh, we are in trouble. And Bread Bar?!?! Isn’t Bread Bar supposed to be Tabla’s the less expensive, yet still delicious little bro? Why would they participate in Restaurant Week? That would be like Craftbar … wait! They do too! The whole concept of Restaurant Week is either recently twisted or I’ve been living a dining fantasy for the past three years. Apparently, if you’re a restaurant who thinks people like you, throw yourself in the ring!

11 Madison  Matsugen  megu buger

I was both happy (because I can eat there more often) and sad (because it’s a sign of the times) to find that the restaurant I chose, Matsugen, (center pic) plans to extend the Restaurant Week specials past the designated week -which is set to end tomorrow, so get your eat on fast! Normally pricey posh eateries such as Eleven Madison Park (right pic), Japonais, and even Megu (left pic) are extending the offer through February. Prices on higher-rated restaurants may exceed the typical $25 lunch/ $35 dinner pre-fixe menu. A complete participant list can be found at

Beverages, gratuities and taxes not included. $$ Saving Tip: Avoid temptation by declining to see the regular menu and skimping on the drinks. You resolved to lose weight anyway, right?

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Posted by Emma Dinzebach at 06:00 AM
bargain news , Restaurants |

One thought on “Recession Restores Restaurant Week

  • January 29, 2009 at 9:10 am

    I’ve tried to make the most of Restaurant Week for as long as I’ve lived in New York, but this year recession did restore my faith in it, to quote Emma. One note: the restaurants are participating through February 30th. and when searching always look for restaurants $$$$ to make it all worth it.


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