New York is foodie heaven but with cool cafés and funky restaurants on every corner the options can get more than a little overwhelming. I’ve been exploring the city like a local and sampling New York’s top restaurants following some great recommendations from family and friends. Here are the superstars:
Stepping in to bite-size Joseph Leonard in Manhattan’s leafy Greenwich Village sort of feels like dining in your grandma’s front living room. With only a handful of tables and a bar, it’s an intimate spot with quirky adornments like a wall of vintage mirrors and crystal cut-glass bowls filled with rock salt. For brunch try the asparagus and parmesan omelette with baby lettuce and brioche or the avocado toast.
Clutching the accolade of being probably my favourite restaurant in the world, Rosemary’s has the combination of great food and vibrant atmosphere mastered. The doors are folded back as tables spill onto the pavement, Parisian twinkly lights dangle from the ceiling and Sam Cooke and his band of soul brothers pour from the speakers. On a summer’s evening, pull up a table on the curb side and order the linguine with preserved lemon, pickled chili and parmigiano and a glass of rosé.
Another favourite Italian eatery, Supper on the Lower East Side is a rustic spot with chunky wooden tables, a cosy family feel and open kitchen. We arrived soaked having been caught in one of New York’s flash floods and ordered the spaghetti pomodoro e basilico with mozarella which was sweet, creamy and comforting. It’s cash only.
This tequila restaurant and bar in busy Hells Kitchen offers tapas-style small plates to nibble on whilst sipping one of their tangy margaritas made with ample lime and agave syrup. It’s open plan with an impressive drinks list and exposed brick walls. Order the trio of guacamole to start and then the mushroom tacos with thyme and garlic.
And then God invented froyo. This mecca for desert fans is an experience to be had by all. It’s a self-serve situation with a bit of a 16-yr old date vibe (expect neon colours and sprinkles) but it tastes damn good and we all need to channel our inner teenager now and again. The salted caramel and mint choc chip flavours are out of this world, as is the hot fudge topping. Be sure to try all the free samples before you buy.
Firmly esteemed as THE place to get bagels in New York. It’s a small establishment on 8th Avenue in West Village with simple decor and a few tables with hundreds of bagel and filling combinations. I played it safe with cream cheese on the ‘everything’ bagel and sat in the window to revel in it’s chewy goodness whilst watching the world go by.
Photo credits: www.seamless.com, www.biteofthebest.com, www.rosemarysnyc.com