This spin off to the now-shuttered Bao 111 continues to serve a more casual version of the original’s Vietnamese cooking. 391 Second Ave between 22nd and 23rd Sts (212-725-7770, baonoodles.com) Daily 11am--midnight.
Its heyday is past, but crowds still flock to this converted diner, perhaps because it still makes for good people-watching and caipirinha sipping. Just imagine how many models have planted their Brazilian-waxed bottoms in your seat.29 Union Sq West at 16th St (212-243-7969) Mon 7am--2am; Tue--Sat 7am--6am; Sun 7am--2am.
Galaxy Global Eatery
Galaxy hums till late, attracting Irving Plaza concertgoers in search of an organic buzz. The smoked-eel burger comes with beet fries and seaweed-cuke salad; cornmeal-crusted tofu gets a drizzle of chocolate-habanero sauce. 15 Irving Pl at 15th St (212-777-3631, galaxyglobaleatery.com) Mon--Fri 9am--2:30am; Sat, Sun 10am--2:30am.
Rodeo Bar & Grill
The slow-smoked Texas barbecue section of the menu at this gritty, multilevel roadhouse covers plenty of territory, but if you prefer some Mex with your Tex, there’s plenty of that, too. 375 Third Ave at 27th St (212-683-6500, rodeobar.com) Daily 11:30am--2am.
Go here for terrific rolls, fresh and complex ceviches and an extensive sake list. Make sure someone orders the tea sugar-drops at dessert; the doughnutlike fritters, dusted in brown sugar and cinnamon, hide molten bittersweet chocolate. 243 Park Avenue South between 19th and 20th Sts (212-475-9377) Mon--Wed 4:30pm--1am; Thu--Sat 4:30pm--2am; Sun 4:30--midnight.
It’s rare to retain New York cred after half a decade, but Sushi Samba continues to pack ’em in, thanks to top-notch cocktails and an innovative menu fusing Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian cuisines. 245 Park Ave South between 19th and 20th Sts (212-475-9377, sushisamba.com) Mon--Wed noon--1am; Thu--Sat noon--2am; Sun 1pm--midnight.
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