Applebee's is a safe place to go with kids or with varied company, because everyone is sure to find something they'll like. The food is tasty, but this particular location is swarming with local middle-school/high school teens who manage to keep the place busy. It's truly the neighborhood hangout, so make of that what you will... The soda's have free refills though, which is a rarity these days!
Alright, so you're not going to go to BBQ expecting world-class fare or super-healthy options. They have a menu limited to BBQ-esque choices - a variety of chicken dishes, burgers, delicious cornbread, great fries, to-die-for vegetable tempura (I get random cravings), caeser salad...etc. It's truly delicious food, and at no other location in Manhattan will you find hearty, filling meals for $6 or less. Lunch hour has special prices and low-carb options. Best of all is happy hour, when drinks are half-price and HUGE. Their martinis and mixed drinks are fun and delicious. Definitely a place to go with your friends after work. And trust me on the tempura!
Bully's is great for its 24-hour delivery service - a life-saver for late nights at work or studying when you come home and just want a warm meal with no effort. The food is fresh, all-American deli/diner fare. Friendly service and relatively large servings. It's a little pricey, but their penne dishes and Chef's salad are worth the splurge!
Here is the caveat emptor regarding Tasti D: The advertised caloric content only applies to the origninal flavors, chocolate and vanilla. The flavors of the day don't necessarily have the same amount of calories.
Nonetheless, you can always get free samples, and you can always walk out of the store with a big cup of sweetness and a guilt-free conscience. Everyone loves it - even the most anti-diet men I know love to mooch off my regular 4pm medium vanilla with rainbow sprinkles. You should know that a sensitive stomach probably won't react well to this stuff. It's dairy free, low sugar, and allegedly "all natural," but whatever they put in it isn't always meant to be digested by human beings. Some people say it leaves you hungry, too. It's a bit pricey but I think it's worth it. Don't forget to get your card stamped when you buy your treat - 10 purchases and you get a free cone or cup!
CONS: Possible tummy pain.
Point #1: Smores crepes. They're heaven-sent.
Point #2: Crepe Creations has the most incredible tea you will ever find in Manhattan. They pack tea bags right in front of you, and you can make the most incredible combinations - LOVE to add blueberry to any traditional tea for a refreshing edge. The flavor is so distinct, you have to try it.
It's a very innovative, very fresh place. They hold crepe-making classes too, which is fun. Price-wise, this place is average; the quality is top-notch, though, and I highly recommend it!
A favorite of the NYU crowd, Cafe University somehow manages to maintain extremely reasonable prices for a very delicious menu. They make excellent pizza and slices with up to two topings are $2.69. Trust me, I don't think you could get a quality slice with toppings for that price since 1992. Salads with four toppings (including meat) are $5.50. The people are so, so nice. Definitely my favorite place to grab a bite to eat.
No matter what your plan is, you cannot expect to go into DSW for any less than an hour. I'm usually there for 2-3. There's just a ton to pick through, and when you're dealing with discounted shoes in massive quantities, there's really not much you can do to try and better organize it. Prices are fabulous, yes. It's a great place to go if you have a general idea of what you need but aren't set on some picky fabrication of your imagination (which I usually am). It's always fun to scourge through the clearance racks. You can definitely find some out-of-the-ordinary ways to dress your feet. Accessories and bags are okay, though I wait til those go on markdown before really checking them out. Less of a selection for men, but sufficient. I just emphasize the need for time when you're in this place. It's not a pop in pop out type of deal.
PROS: Discounts, huge...
CONS: Time consuming
Here's just five things that I loooooooove about Whole Foods:
1. The smell when you first walk in. Organicismic. Ha.
2. The marinated chicken salad and the tempeh and the grilled vegetables and the sweet potato casserole and EVERYTHING in their salad bar, which, at $6.99/lb, isn't a bargain but isn't a rip-off either.
3. The icing-stuffed oatmeal sandwhich cookies. Screw Atkins, Weight Watchers, my cholesteral, swimsuit season, whatever. These are heaven-sent.
4. The very friendly cashiers who somehow, despite the masses of customers, you manage to get to without waiting very long and who deal with you in a way that makes you and them forget that they've been working in an insanely-paced supermarket for four hours.
5. Bottled water:$0.49. Poland Spring seltzer: $0.69. I was gushing about this for days.
So apparently the Toasties' Union Square management met with some harsh words when a customer, who was buying a buttered roll, realized that their "tax" was entirely illegal. An employee of the NYU dorm next door, he asserted, "That nine cents isn't going to the government, I'll tell you that much. It's going to their pockets."
Tis oh so true. Toasties is a rip-off. While sandwhiches are just slightly overpriced, just about everything else you see in there is making the owner an irrationally high profit margin. Buttered rolls are one thing; then there's the $8 tossed salads, $5 3 ounce containers of egg salad, $2+ Vitamin waters, $1.75 Soy Chips, $4.75 32 oz Corona ., and $3.17 Red Bulls.
Now don't get me wrong, the sandwiches are delicious, and they've got beer on tap - Stella, in fact - but the often-illegal overpricing of foods has led a number of the store's college-age neighbors to picket their business. Unfortunately, for those with iffy fake-I.D.s, the squinty 24-hour chashier proves to be a lifesaver. Until the feds do some cracking down, or consumers realize that their life savings have drained away from getting tuna fish salads (true story), Toasties will be left standing.
PROS: Good sandwhiches
CONS: Sketchy business, ridiculously overpriced.
The great thing about wrocket wraps is that, for around $7-10, you can get a healythy meal that will fill you up and then some. The not-so-great-thing is that the food's so good, you almost undoubtedly end up stuffing yourself. Their dishes are absolutely amazing, it's all very fresh; you can request all white meat chicken or a low-carb wrap if that's your deal. Service is quick, everyone is very friendly, there are comfy couches and internet connections in the restaurant, NYU students get a 10% discount and everyone gets free refills.