I have some experiences to share from a recent weekend trip to New York City:
The E.U. — Sporting exposed brick walls and floor-to-ceiling windows, this is an electic eatery in the East Village with good meats, cheese and charcuterie. I agree with Restaurant Girl, the vibe is definitely "Rustic farmhouse meets brasserie." They have a good, upscale beer selection. Reasonable prices, although a bit of a walk from the nearest subway stop. But I gladly recommend it. It's located at 235 East 4th St., between Avenues A and B, and you can reserve it on Open Table.
Joe's Shanghai — There are too many tasty dim sum-oriented Chinese restaurants to waste your time here. I ate lunch at the location at 24 West 56th Street, and the so-called "soup dumplings" had a bland pork filling. The soupy liquid inside was equally tasteless. New York magazine writes about Joe's: "How do they get the soup inside those dumplings? Easy: They thicken it with gelatin and put it in solid." Yum. I guess that explains why I was far from dazzled.
A Voce — (pictured above) Andrew Carmellini first made a name for himself in NYC as chef de cuisine at Café Boulud, but he traded French bistro cooking for Italian in 2006 when he opened the Italian restaurant called A Voce. The restaurant, located on the edge of the Flatiron District, is relatively small -- and a bit on the noisy side. But the food was lovely. The duck meatballs lived up to all of the raves I had heard or read about them.
Triomphe — I had lunch with a friend at this French restaurant, located in midtown and connected to The Iroquois Hotel on 44th Street, within a block of 5th Ave. Triomphe is definitely pricey, but everything was tasty. This is the traditional French cuisine with rich stocks and sauces that, as New York magazine put it, "would do Escoffier proud." To illustrate the point, my main course was accompanied by a lobster bearnaise (which was excellent, BTW). Nice place for a business or expense-account lunch.