Lao Ma Spicy is a Chinese restaurant on 8th Street near NYU that specializes in dry pot dishes, and is spacious enough that you’ll easy find a table. They have a few other locations in Flushing, but this is the first one in Manhattan. The only options are dry pot (soup or noodles) and dumplings, and depending on how much you hate making decisions, you can order a seafood, vegetable, and meat combo directly from the menu, or customize your own soup or noodle dish at a counter. The DIY area is set up a little like a Chipotle, only with lobster tails, tripe, and a soul.
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Balthazar, you had a good 16-year run, but it’s time to step aside. Lafayette is now the quintessential French bistro of bustling downtown NYC.
The Bowery Electric
The Bowery Electric is a bar and live music venue in Nolita where you can dance in the basement or see a band play.
Gato, Bobby Flay’s Mediterranean spot in Noho, isn’t quite as good as it was when it opened, but it’s still a useful option in certain situations.
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Nurlan is a casual, halal Uyghur restaurant in Flushing with great laghman hand-pulled noodles.
Very Fresh Noodles
Very Fresh Noodles is a great spot for Chinese hand-pulled noodles in Chelsea Market.
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Hao Noodle & Tea
A Chinese restaurant in the West Village with awesome food but frequently very confused service.
Xi’an Famous Foods
The Upper West Side location of Xi’an Famous Foods is an affordable place to eat good, spicy Chinese noodles.
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