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Good eats! That the ticket, pre- or post-theater

You've got tickets to a Broadway show - but where are you eating beforehand? If you need a change from the old Theater District standbys, try one of these stellar eateries.


1. 5 Napkin Burger


WHAT At this great-looking eatery, the eponymous five-napkin burger is 10 ounces of ground chuck smothered in rosemary aioli, Gruyere and caramelized onions on a brioche bun. The menu has plenty of other burgers and non-burger options, including a wide selection of whiskey and beer. Kid friendly.

WHERE 630 Ninth Ave. (between 44th and 45th streets)

INFO $-$$, 212-757-2277, 5napkinburger.com


2. ESCA


WHAT One of the top fish restaurants in the city, where chef/co-owner Dave Pasternack (who catches much of his own fish) cooks with Italian simplicity and flair.

WHERE 402 W. 43rd St. (at Ninth Avenue)

INFO $$$-$$$$, 212-564-7272, esca-nyc.com


3. Marseille


WHAT Very attractive bistro that pays tribute not only to the Mediterranean port city of its name, but to the former French colony Morocco. You'll find bouillabaisse and couscous on the menu, as well as bistro standards such as steak frites, chicken paillard and salade Nicoise.

WHERE 630 Ninth Ave. (at 44th Street)

INFO $$-$$$, 212-333-2323, marseillenyc.com


4. Sapporo


WHAT This bustling noodle shop is the perfect place for a quick, cheap pre-theater meal: big bowls of ramen noodles in broth, plus donburi (rice bowls), dumplings and other Japanese specialties. Alone? Sit at the counter and watch the cooks work the woks. Kid friendly.

WHERE 152 W. 49th St. (between Seventh and Eighth avenues)

INFO $, 212-869-8972


Average meal, per person:

$$$$ $100, $$$ $60, $$ $30, $ $15

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