Amazing Places to Eat in New York
I have a confession to make. I love food and I love wine. There. I said it. Now, before you assume that this blog is going to send you to all the highbrow, fancy eateries, it’s not. I am going to share my favourite spots which just happen to be affordable restaurants in Manhattan and some of the best places to eat in New York, in my opinion.
Sure, there are many swanky restaurants all over the city serving up some of the finest plates of food you’ll ever see – Instagrammable dishes that could easily grace the pages of the world’s food press. Let’s face it; as lovely as they are and would be great to experience, on a short city break (and on a budget), we’re all looking for good food, decent wine and nice surroundings to enjoy it in without breaking the bank. Plus, if you’re travelling with kids or fussy teenagers, these elegant places will be wasted on them. Nobody can afford to pay big bucks for fancy food that might be politely pushed around a plate.
Before I arrived, I had spent hours researching the best places to eat in New York. So much so that I started feeling a little overwhelmed by the sheer volume of listing offered to me by Google. In the end, I didn’t go with any of the lists I made on my phone I decided to just see where I landed when it was time to feed my face. I was lucky to find some cracking wee places that hit the spot for me and my travelling companions and it would be a shame not to share them with you. If you are planning to visit New York, perhaps with younger tripsologists in tow, you should consider dropping in to some of these places I am going to recommend.
One of the first questions I asked some of my friends who had already been to the Big Apple was “Is eating out in New York expensive” Mostly they said yes, it is and a lot of the places I had looked at were indeed on the higher end of my budget but when I am on holiday I tend not to worry too much about what I’m spending and face the music when I get home but on this trip, I didn’t want to go overboard and all of the other things I was doing in New York were quite pricey too so a balance had to be struck. I’m sure many of you will have the same idea.
So, without further ado…
My Top Places to Eat in New York
Fine & Rare
First up is Fine & Rare. I would never have known about this place had it not been for a friend of mine who lives in New York and who kindly brought us here. This was without doubt, one of my NY highlights. Fine & Rare opened its doors in early 2017, creating a destination for fine food, rare spirits and where contemporary diners could enjoy the timeless sophistication of old New York. It was recently voted a Manhattan Hot Spot on Open Table. It’s hard to describe what this place is…it looks like a grand private members’ club yet it was so welcoming and cosy and not remotely stuffy. The menu offered a good variety of dishes to suit every palate and by Manhattan standards, I felt it was reasonably priced. Our bill was only on the high side because yours truly here opted for an expensive bottle of wine. Had I just had a beer or two, the total amount would have been considerably less. My love for New Zealand Marlborough Sauvignon is no secret and as I had yet to enjoy any on this trip, I was cock-a-hoop to see one on the wine list here so I just ordered it with reckless abandon.
Everyone in the party enjoyed their choice of dish with top marks going to the dessert my son chose – the F&R Chocolate Sphere – a decadent work of art that looked as good as it tasted. Or so I am told. I chose to drink the calories instead. As an added bonus, we were treated to live music and this alone was worth the price of our dinner. Check it out…www.fineandrare.nyc
Next up is Latitude. I found this brilliant bar on our last day which was unfortunate because had I found it earlier, I suspect we would have come here more than once. For me, this was the ideal place for a nice Sunday afternoon pub lunch. Latitude’s cool interior is an oasis of calm in the heart of the busy theatre land district although I suspect it will be much busier on a Friday or Saturday night. We just got lucky that when we dropped in here for a cold, refreshing beer that it was pretty quiet so we decided to stay for food. You’ll find a cracking menu that features plenty of choices including sizzling sliders, burgers, Chilli, tacos, wraps and tasty, grilled chicken tenders. Excellent value for money and top quality bar food.
In the heart of Grand Central Station, Cipriani Dolci was a fantastic spot to indulge in a bit of people watching as well as refuelling after a busy morning and lots of walking. It’s not the cheapest place to eat but not silly prices either. Given the location and elegant surrounds as well as the charming and immaculate servers, it wasn’t too bad. Again, it was the wine that bumped up the bill so if you opt for a beer or soft drink, it’ll be much less. Among a fine choice of Italian fayre, you’ll find easy classics such as the Cipriani Club Sandwich or the Hamburger alla Cipriani with French fries. On my visit, I tucked into a beautiful lasagne all washed down with a couple of crisp Pinto Grigios which were served in the prettiest little carafes I’ve ever seen. You can expect attentive service, classy food presentation and a vibrant atmosphere, as well as a prime spot for watching the comings and goings of the main concourse.
West End Bar & Grill
A recent addition to the Hell’s Kitchen food scene, West End Bar & Grill is another impressive eatery and it was absolutely buzzing on our visit. We dined here before going to a show and the place was packed…mainly with locals too which I think is always a good sign. We were lucky to bag a table. I had called ahead to book but they were full and had stopped taking reservations – to be fair, it was Saturday night. However, they told us to pitch up anyway and they’d try and fit us in – and they did. The menu features the likes of truffle mac and cheese, sweet potato fries, grilled Hanger steaks, tacos, burgers and a trio of slider (classic, chicken parm, salmon or lamb) and many other mouth-watering dishes. It also boasted a top selection of craft and artisan beers. Again, for location and quality, it was reasonably priced but if you do plan on going, make sure you book in advance in case they can’t squeeze you in.
I’d recommend West End Bar & Grill for good value pre-theatre nosh or a post-show night cap.
If you have any suggestions on where to eat in New York, why not share your intel. Food is so subjective, don’t you think? One man’s meat is another man’s poison and all that but it’s still great to get real recommendations from people rather than just relying on online reviews.
What’s your favourite restaurant in the Big Apple?
I love travel. I’ve been fascinated by other countries and cultures since my first foreign trip in 1985 and I’ve had serious wanderlust ever since.I also love to write about where I’ve been and tripsology lets me indulge that passion. I’m thrilled to be a regular contributor and editor. When I’m not writing I also run my own PR and publicity company.