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Meat the Vegetarian

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Some time last year, I had gotten several recommendations to try this pasta place.  It was great, cheap, and veggie friendly.  AWESOME– I mean cheap food and wine in NYC that tasted great and wasn’t too bad for you?  Sign me up.  It took me about 6 months to actually try Lamarca, because it was never open.  The hours are: Mon-Fri: 12pm-10pm.  (They really won’t seat you past 9 pm; the doors lock and the lights shut off at 10.)  How does a restaurant survive?  Not open on the weekends?  Really?  For those of you who know me, which is every one reading this at this point, you know the kind of hours Max and I work– there is usually no way we can eat any where during the week before 9 pm.   So now, I only get to go there when my dad comes in (to buy me dinner, of course), because I can tell my boss that I have to get out early to see my father.   I don’t want to really accuse them of being affiliated with the Mob, especially because the people working there aren’t Italian, but can you think of any other way they could stay in business?  I still can’t believe they aren’t open on Saturdays…  

Location:  Lamarca; 161 E 22nd St (for the New Yorkers, 22nd and 3rd– it’s just too much work to figure out building numbers)  

17 Bucks Isn't Bad for Wine!

Price:  Dirt Cheap for what you get– about $12 gets you bread, a salad, and a generous helping of pasta.  For another $17, you get a bottle of wine… which, surprisingly, isn’t too bad.  

Difficulty:  The only difficult part about this for everyone is… leaving hungry– I would say THAT was impossible.  Unless of course, for some outrageous reason that I can’t even begin to imagine… you don’t eat pasta. 


Meat-Eater:  My dad LOVES Lamarca.  It is filling, delicious, and low-key.  He has gotten chicken dishes in the past, but this time opted for Eggplant Parm.  Imagine that, a Meat-Eater CHOOSING to eat vegetarian!  Needless to say, I don’t think he missed the meat (since he ordered for himself)– we both left stuffed.  He also didn’t need to choose a meatless dish; it came down to the wire between chicken or eggplant for his parm.   

Salad with Olive-y Dressing

Veggie:  I had a delicious plate of Manicotti…  and I have to tell you, I love cheese.  I love cheese and pasta and tomato sauce.  It was really traditional and simple, but SO GOOD.  Sometimes classic food, without all the bells, whistles, and pazazz, is just the best.  These dishes are not inventive; they are italian classics, aka favorites.  The rolls are fresh and hot; the salad is plain with olive-y dressing.  I typically don’t like olives, but the dressing is fine.  Everything is very satisfying– especially if you are looking to please a less than adventurous eater.  I also like red wine, a lot.  And, I love how it just magically goes with pasta so well!  We split a bottle of Malbec, and we didn’t share our dinners (even though, this was one of the rare times I could share!); we had a wonderful meal.  


After dinner, we tried a newer wine bar that opened up.  I’m not sure how I feel about Wine 30 (on 30th between Park and Madison).  I think I will have to go there again.  We couldn’t sit outside; it was too busy.  But it was really loud inside for a wine bar.  I’ll have to try sitting outside, and maybe getting some food.  The wine was nice; they had a big selection of regions and prices.  We had whatever the pictured bottle is… I like the region, it fit the price range.  It cost the same at our whole meal at LaMobca ($50).  

Wine 30 Wine

P.S. Don’t judge by quality of the pics… I tried to use my phone so I didn’t look like a crazy with my camera in the restaurant… I think I will just have to look crazy from now on.  


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