Finding the overlooked pockets in the obvious places.
Pay Less for Tickets by Wearing Pink (and Other Bargain Approaches)
If You’re Undeterred by Blizzards …
The harder it is to get to midtown, the easier it is for you to get a ticket, especially to shows that tend to sell out. Shows sometimes offer weather-related discounts, which you can find by checking sites like Playbill’s.
If You Own a Lot of Pink …
In a wink to the dress code of the Plastics, Mean Girls (1) offers rush tickets to people wearing pink on Wednesdays starting at 10. Purchase tickets here.
Or Just Go See The Band’s Visit (2)
Ticket sales went up nearly 400 percent in the 24 hours after the show swept the Tonys. With some distance from the awards, it’s now possible to book tickets for under $50, and you still get to see Sasson Gabai, of the original film, in the lead. Purchase tickets here.
— Jackson McHenry
Eat Where the Theater Crowd Eats Near the Theater
Sushi of Gari 46, 347 W. 46th St. (3)
“Sushi of Gari is great for pre-theater dinner. I like to order their cucumber-wrapped sushi — there’s no rice, and it’s fast.” —Renée Fleming, soprano and actress, Carousel
Casellula, 401 W. 52nd St. (4)
“An actress in our cast, Liv Rooth, designs the cheese menu here, which means it’s fabulous. And I know it doesn’t sound appetizing but I promise it is: the Pig’s Ass sandwich — order it.”— Gideon Glick, actor, To Kill a Mockingbird
Lantern’s Keep, 49 W. 44th St. (5)
“If you don’t fancy anything on the menu, the bartender will ask your favorite booze and surprise you.” — Casey Nicholaw, director-choreographer
Bocca di Bacco, 635 Ninth Ave.
“The wooden beam ceilings and brick create a lovely vibe that take me out of the hustle of midtown. I always get the grilled octopus and salmon when I go to Bocca di Bacco.” — Ari’el Stachel, actor, The Band’s Visit
Bar Centrale, 324 W. 46th St.
“It’s a weird sister to Joe Allen and Orso with weird policies (no dessert, no coffee) that make it feel like a clubhouse. For additional frisson you may well find yourself seated next to someone you’ve just reviewed, or been reviewed by. Or just feel catty about. I usually order the six-ounce skirt steak and, if I’m feeling retro, the curried deviled eggs.” — Jesse Green, co-chief theater critic, New York Times (and former New York theater critic)
Joe Allen, 326 W. 46th St.
“Last time I went, I saw the entire cast of The Boys in the Band, plus Ryan Murphy. A burger and a martini does the trick.” — Michael Schulman, theater journalist, The New Yorker
West Bank Cafe, 407 W. 42nd St.
“It’s far enough away from tourists, but still a quick jog to most theaters.
Get the WBC burger or deviled eggs at the bar, and your libation of choice.” — David Cote, theater critic
Pasta Lovers, 142 W. 49th St.
“Don’t be put off by the name — Pasta Lovers has a great happy hour, enormous wine glasses, and the food is far better than it needs to be for its location. I’ll get the Grandpa pizza if I don’t have the theater, the onion-less Grandma pizza if I do, and the shrimp salad with fried capers and bacon if I’m lying to myself about being healthy.” — Mark Peikert, editor-in-chief, Playbill
Hakkasan, 311 W. 43rd St.; Betti Bar, 373 W. 46th St.
“For a pre-show dinner, my favorite place in the area is Hakkasan, which serves high-end Cantonese cuisine in a swank atmosphere. It’s on 43rd Street just off Eighth Avenue, near most of the major midtown theaters. The menu includes many delicious small dishes, which is good if you don’t want to get sleepy from overeating; I’m partial to the steamed dim sum sampler. For a cozy post-show experience, my favorite Theater District watering-hole-in-the-wall is Betti Bar, hidden away upstairs at the Hourglass Tavern. It’s a tiny slice of a room; it seats maybe 25 people. You can order from the full Hourglass Tavern menu, which is handy, especially on Fridays and Saturdays, when the kitchen stays open late.” — Adam Feldman, theater editor and chief critic, Time Out
Kashkaval Garden, 852 Ninth Ave.
“I always order the Kashkaval fondue, plus a few of the skewers (my favorites are the chicken and the filet mignon), all washed down with a glass of crisp white wine. The mood is very hygge, which we now know from Frozen means cozy and inviting.” — Patti Murin, actress, Frozen
P.S. Kitchen, 246 W. 48th St.
“P.S. Kitchen is one of the few dedicated vegan eateries in the theater district. I love the Maitake steam bao, the crispy artichoke, and the P.S.
burger.” — Taylor Trensch, actor, Dear Evan Hansen
And for shows near Lincoln Center …
Dublin House, 225 W. 79th St.
“It’s a short walk (or quick subway ride) from Lincoln Center, but it’s an unpretentious and authentic New York Irish pub. I recommend their well-poured pint of Guinness or Baileys on the rocks.” — Gillian Murphy, principal dancer, American Ballet Theatre
Lincoln Ristorante, 142 W. 65th St.
“Lincoln is wonderful for a preshow cocktail. Its open layout gives it a sleek and intimate feeling. I love their Hayman Old Tom Gibson and wonderful Aperol spritzes. My friend, Nico Muhly, swears by their Negroni … especially a fancy one with artichoke liquor and orange peel.” — Bartlett Sher, director, My Fair Lady
— Trupti Rami