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Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Lima, Peru
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160 posts
97 reviews
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Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Hi

I'm arriving in NYC next week. I haven't been in NYC in nearly three years so I'm looking for affordable ethnic restaurants...

I've been looking in the past few days some restaurants and these are my option...

Can you help me with your recommendations?

If you find a better place, please let me know!

ETHIOPIAN...

Queen of Shelba

Meskrem

Ghenet

INDIAN...

Benjara

Deví

Cafe Spice (looks like a chain?)

Curry Leaf

Tamarind?

THAI...

Sea

The Elephant

Room Service

RUSSIAN!

The only place I found is Pravda - which is from the same owner of Pastis.

Thank you very much!

Brooklyn, New York
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1. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Hi - Re Ethiopian I think Ghenet is really the best - I've been to the others but always return to Ghenet - their Combination Specials are fantastic. And for Indian - I love both Devi and Tamarind - but also recommend the Bread Bar @ Tabla. http://www.tablany.com/

Other posters here can tell you about the best Thai restaurants to try...

Queens, NY
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2. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Indian

Saravanaas (http://www.saravanaas.com/) may be the best South Indian place in the city. And that's coming from me, and I live in Jackson Heights. It's simply awesome. 26th and Lexington.

Gaam (http://www.gaamny.com/) is where Vatan has decamped to during renovations. Vatan used to offer (and will offer, when they're done) a terrific prix-fixe Gujarati thali served in little grass huts. Even without the huts it's a first class thali.

Mughlai, at 75th and Columbus, is my favorite in the midrange chain Indian places. It gets interesting there when you start ordering stuff from the Goan/Bombay end of the menu, like fish curry.

Thai

There is only one Sripraphai; it is probably the best Thai restaurant within 1500 miles. It is at 39th Avenue and 64th Street in Woodside. It is not far. You will not regret it. My father's girlfriend is Thai and even she bows down to it.

If I'm stuck in Manhattan, though, the pick is Pam Real Thai at 49th and 9th. Some have criticized this place for being, well, too real - some of the flavors are uncompromising. It's not American Thai. I'm cool with that!

If you really want to go wacky Amerithai, it's Republic all the way. That's a hipster college student Thai diner on the east side of Union Square. Verging on wacky, but always fun and always cheap.

Queens, NY
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3. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

BTW, no offense and I love both Tabla and the Bread Bar, but they aren't straight Indian. They're Indian-inspired global fusion. Which is great, but it's Indian-inspired global fusion with almost as many French and Asian elements as Indian.

That said, I go to lunch there whenever possible. I just wouldn't call it an "Indian restaurant."

If you want other Indian fusion, by the way, also try one of the Indian-Chinese places, it's a new trend. There are several in my neighborhood but there's an easily accessible one at 28th and Lexington, called Chinese Mirch.

Lima, Peru
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160 posts
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4. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Excellent!

Thank you very much!

Well, I'll stay with Ghenet in Ethiopian. I'm going to check the website you send me...

Any ideas on a Russian?

Thank you very, very much!

NYC
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229 posts
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5. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

If you're willing to come into Queens, Arharn Thai is pretty good. On 36th Avenue (the third stop in on the N-train, about 12 minutes from the 59th and Lexington stop). They have an extensive menu and I highly recommend it.

New Orleans...
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6. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

I'll be the naysayer on Ghenet. The food is fine, but Awash on Amsterdam near 106th is much, much better. I also like The Ethiopian Restaurant (that's the name) on York near 83rd.

Of the Indian places listed, I'd go with Devi or Tamarind. Cafe Spice is really mediocre, and really not in the same league.

New York City, New...
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7. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

For Ethiopian, I like Ghenet, Awash, and Meskel (not Meskrem). Meskel is a little (myabe 15 seats) dive on East 3rd that serves really great food, especially the vegetarian options. Here's the rave by Peter Meehan:

http://events.nytimes.com/2006/11/01/dining/reviews/01unde.html?n=Top/Features/Dining%20and%20Wine/Columns/$25%20and%20Under

And hooray for Gaam!

New York City, New...
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8. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Oh, and for Russian: Uncle Vanya's, Firebird, Petrossian, Russian Samovar, and, in Brighton Beach, Primorski. Pravda is very scene-y, as you can imagine.

Incidentally, you didn't ask about this, but last night I went to a Serbian restaurant called Kafana that just opened in the East Village; terrific sausages:

http://nymag.com/listings/restaurant/kafana/

New York City, New...
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9. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Another vote for Ghenet!

Queens, New York
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10. Re: Help with restaurants: Indian, Ethiopian, Thai and Russian!

Yeah, for Russian, I'd strongly reeco taking that long subway ride to Brighton Beach! Besides, you'll probably need a nice afternoon by the water to beat the heat!

I love Primorskis, but there's also the more popular and expensive place on the boardwalk itself, or those under the elevated train like Anna's Cappucino, Ocean View Carfe (with no ociean view), etc.

Hard to go wrong. However, their English is not the greatest, the service is gruff by our standards and they'll automatically include the tip (so check the receipt) - so don't take their "attitude" or "bad service" personally!!

Here's my post re: Brighton Beach

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g60763-i5-k917481-… I_know_this_is_completely_the_wrong_time_for_Coney_Island-