The only worthwhile high-end restaurant within easy walking distance of Broadway shows, Iris is our top pick for a pre-theater or post-matinee meal (alas, it closes before most evening shows let out). Don’t be put off by its sleek but somewhat generic looks, which belie the passionate, personal cooking chef/owner John Fraser is doing here. Of Greek heritage, but with a healthy appreciation for Turkish food, too, he goes deep into traditional Aegean recipes using mastic, sorrel, purslane, and other unusual ingredients in the spreads, lamb, and fish offerings. For dessert, a cart laden with Turkish delight, wedding cookies, and other sweet treats, is wheeled up to your table.

Tip: Iris has one of the best “Happy Hour” deals in midtown (Mon–Sat 5–6:30pm), with delicious bites you can craft into a pre-theater meal for under $20 if you sit at the bar.