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First Hungarian Literary Society

Restaurants, Hungarian Downtown

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The 120-year-old Society was founded to “cultivate literature,” but these days members seem more devoted to playing cards. Call ahead to reserve a spot among the poker-obsessed crowd for a three-course $20 prix-fixe meal. The menu changes daily, but Hungarian standards such as sweet-and-sour pickled herring make frequent appearances. A disznotoros (sausage plate) with blood and spicy sausages and kielbasa is a winner thanks to the snappy natural casings sealing in bursts of flavor. Close with coglof, a fruit-filled cake that’s a variation on babka.



Address: 323 E 79th St between First
New York
Cross street: and Second Aves, second floor
Transport: Subway: 6 to 77th St
Price: Average main course: $20. Cash only
Opening hours: Mon–Wed, Fri–Sun 6pm–1am
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