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Top places for pre-theatre eats and post-theatre drinks in NYC

Every night on Broadway 41 theatres provide feasts for the eyes. Luckily, the Theatre District is also crammed with places that provide feasts for the stomach and we selected the best Broadway restaurants so you can get your fill before or after the show.

Rush hour tends to be around 6.30pm and tables fill up fast, so it’s best to book ahead to ensure you get a spot.

Later, when the shows are over, a long list of bars wait in Broadway’s wings. Take your pick from cocktails bars, speakeasies, gin joints and traditional pubs.

Here’s our guide to the best-rated places to chow down and drink up…

Pre-theatre bites

Frankie & Johnnie’s, 320 West 46th Street

Just around the corner from the theatres that show Kinky Boots and The Phantom of the Opera, Frankie & Johnnie’s Steakhouse offers a three-course pre-theatre menu. Options include the likes of golden corn bisque for entrée, NY strip for main, and warm apple strudel for dessert. The décor is traditional with leather seating and wood the colour of a well-done sirloin.


The Smith, 1900 Broadway

This restaurant and bar eyeballs Lincoln Performing Arts Centre, which is home to the Metropolitan Opera House and the New York City Ballet. Its organic menu features everything from steak to a Korean rice bowl dish called bibimbap. If you’re not too hungry, you could choose something from the raw bar such as fresh oysters.


db Bistro Moderne, 55 West 44th Street

Just around the corner from the New Amsterdam Theatre, where Aladdin is playing, DB Bistro Moderne serves contemporary French food. Its three-course pre-theatre menu showcases dishes like paté for entrée, Arctic char for main, and pecan macaroon for dessert. The décor, meanwhile, is sleek and simple with plenty of mirrors and flattering lighting.


Ellen’s Stardust Diner, 1650 Broadway

Ellen’s Stardust Diner is just down the road from The Gershwin Theatre where Wicked is showing. As the name suggests, this place has a bit of pzaz. Its waiters are known to burst into song as they make their way around the red booths. The menu, meanwhile, is inscribed with everything from all day breakfasts to Reuben sandwiches and Kobe beef burgers.


Dallas Barbecue Times Square, 241 West 42nd Street

Close to the main theatre strip, Dallas Barbecue Times Square is the place to get stuck into ribs, wings, burgers and fried shrimp. The restaurant also offers an early bird special menu between 2pm and 5pm on weekdays. Plus, it serves up some chalice-sized cocktails making it one of our favourite Broadway restaurants.


Post theatre tipples

The Rum House, 228 West 47th Street

This speakeasy-style bar is decked out with leather, dark wood and brass. Taking pride of place on the drinks menu is a range of rum cocktails such as the Rum Old Fashioned and the Dark and Stormy. Of course, you can also order rum on the rocks.


The Sky Lark, 200 West 39th Street

A short walk from New Amsterdam Theatre and the musical Aladdin, The Sky Lark serves post-theatre drinks with a view. This cocktail bar is on the 30th floor of a skyscraper and encased in ceiling to floor windows. It’s not just the view that’s a knock out here, though, the drinks are too. The signature Sky Lark cocktail is made with gin, vodka, St Germain liqueur, blue curacao and brandied cherry. Hiccup.


Havana Central, 151 West 46th Street

A short stagger from the main theatre strip, Havana Central serves up cocktails (including one served inside a pineapple) beers and wine against a soundtrack of live Latin music. As the name suggests, the décor is inspired by Cuba but it doesn’t take itself too seriously.


Emmett O’Lunney’s Irish Pub, 210 West 50th Street

Right in the middle of the Theatre District Emmett O’Lunney’s is open until 2am every day. Traditional beers, ales and Guinness pass over the bar here, as well as a range of cocktails. The pub offers live music most nights, too.


Bathtub Gin, 132 9th Avenue

This one is an eight minute taxi ride from the main theatre strip, but it’s worth a visit if you’re not ready to go cold turkey on theatrics when your show ends. The centrepiece of this bar is a huge old fashioned bathtub, which makes for some great photos. Cocktails, meanwhile, are served in teacups and copper kettles and there’s no shortage of dry ice on the menu.



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