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» Best of NY
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» Bars to try
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Best of NY
BEST COCKTAILS
Angel's Share, Death & Co, Buddakan, Shebeen, Milk&Honey, East Side Co, Back Room, Spice Market, Pravda, Schillers, Campbell Apartment, Stanton Social, Employees Only, Pegu Club
FAVORITE RESTAURANTS
Little Owl, In Vino, Stanton Social, The Modern, Per Se, Tabla, Bonafides, Jewel Bako, Cafe Habana
FAVORITE BARS
Jimmy's No 43, Rue B, Musical Box, The Skinny
CHEAP EATS
Chickpea, Cafe Habana, BarBossa, Kati Roll, Dosa Man
BEST COFFEE SHOPS - based on the coffee alone, nothing else
Abraco, Cafe Zaiya, Cosi, Venieros, Dean and Deluca, Mud
BEST CHOCOLATE
Max Brenner, Payard, La Maison du chocolat
BEST LIVE MUSIC
Pianos, Mercury Lounge, Bowery Ballroom, Webster Hall, Knitting Factory
Food done
Per Se - ***** - website
An unforgettable dinner. worth every penny. no joke. full review
The Little Owl - ***** - website
One of the best meals I've ever had. Everything is great. The sliders and pork are their specialty and are the best I've ever had. Friendly staff. It's hard to get a reservation here, but they have some walk in tables so show up and be prepared to wait. It's worth it!
Jewel Bako - ***** - website
Gary and I had an excellent dinner here. Instead of ordering the Chef's Omakase tasting menu, we just ordered a whole lot of sushi. Well, we started with the Otoro Tartate. Then we proceeded to have every different type of sushi they had (well, until we were full). We had otoro, sea bass, tiger shrimp, japanese bonito, clam, crab, scallops, octopus, and more. The best ones were the crab, scallops, and otoro. No rolls here, only high quality sushi.
BarBossa - ***** - website
A bunch of us ended up here randomly because Cafe Habana across the street couldn't accomodate our large group. I'm glad they couldn't. This brazilian restaurant has a great menu with lots of appetizers and sandwiches. Most of their dinner entrees are special and rotate. I tried four different entrees and every one was incredible. I had roast pork with a pineapple chutney. We also got two desserts: guinness chocolate cake and a passion fruit pavé. Especially for the price, this is one of my top New York restaurant picks.
Peter Luger's - ***** - website
Number one steak, 22 years in a row. It really is that good. The restaurant isn't fancy. They have been serving meat for many years and they know how to do it. And you almost don't need to order, you always get the tomato and onion appetizer, steak (rare please!), spinach and potatoes. The highlight was the whiskey sour, best I've ever had. They don't use sour mix at all. Highly recommended.
Ruth's Chris - *****
Obviously this isn't a NY only restaurant. I don't think I'll go back to Peter Luger's again unless someone is visiting NY and wants to go there because it's famous. The steak was great (on par with Lugers). The chopped salad was amazing, all the sides were great, and the apple tart was perfect. Given Luger's horrible service, I'm glad to have a new favorite steak.
Stanton Social - *****
THIS PLACE IS AMAZING. One of the best restaurants I've ever been to. Tapas style. Every item will blow you away. Go in a big group to try more food. Wow. Remember: spinach salad with beetle nuts
Black Hound Bakery - ***** - website
On Christmas I took a cake from Black Hound to my uncle's place in Long Island. It was a ginger bread cake with layers of fresh apricots and cream. It was surprisingly light, not too sweet or filling. We easily finished the whole thing. One of the best cakes I've ever had.
Friend of a Farmer - *****
This is a popular brunch spot but after failing to get in on several occasions due to long lines, I went for dinner instead. It was delicious, one of my best meals in NY. They give you free corn bread with apple butter spread. The potroast and the talapia were both great. I've also had their pumpkin pie and pumpkin cheescake. yum!!
In Vino - ***** - website
One of my best meals in New York. A tiny wine cave with a huge wine selection and great service. Every dish is incredibly rich and flavorful. Make sure to ask for recommendations. Manager is Keith, Mac user :).
vol de nuit - ***** - website
Great Belgian beer place in west village. AWESOME mussels and fries. Awesome beer.
Gramercy Tavern - ***** - website
It doesn't get much better than this. Food, service, everything. book early! Check out my full review. Been here three times for restaurant week lunches. You have to call right at 9am 28 days early to get in.
Chiles and Chocolate - *****
Authentic Oaxacan cousine in Park Slope. The Mole is amazing. Very cheap. Highly recommended.
Katz's Deli - *****
The sandwiches are HUGE and awesome. Get the standard pastrami on rye. Yum!
The Coffee Shop - ***** - website
Very cool restaurant and bar. Very crowded so show up early on weekends. Great food. Excellent spinach lentil soup.
Delion Grocery - ***** - Broadway and 8th St
Awesome Deli, cool people working there. I love the turkey sandwich on an everything bagel with jack cheese lettuce, tomato, and an egg on top. wow. delicious.
Schillers Liquor Bar - ***** - website
Great restaurant in LES. All the food is great, all the cocktails are great. You can't go wrong here (except the wait for a table). Try a New York Sour. And don't miss the Sticky Toffee Pudding for dessert.
Cafe Zaiya - *****
Cool Japanese dessert and coffee place next to my house. I think they are related to Beard Papa. Very good desserts that are not too sweet. The iced mochas are much better than starbucks and made with care :)
La Esquina - ***** - website
From the outside it's a taco stand. But go through the employees only door, through the kitchen, and you find yourself in a beautiful Mexican restaurant. Margaritas are perfect, food is great. Supposedly a celebrity hot spot.
Assenzio - ***** - website
Italian food heavy on the meat. Had boar (awesome) and tried the pork (great), short ribs with mole (awesome), and more. Everything was well done and unique. We split some ravioli in truffle sauce as an appetizer and it was perfect. Highly recommended.
Fornino Pizza - ***** - website
Pizza in Williamsburg. Wow. Some of the best pizza EVER.
Cafe Habana - ***** - website
Awesome Cuban food. Recommend the Steak and corn salad, chicken quesadillas, and plantanes. The fish tacos are also supposed to be good. You have to get the Mexican corn. Basically, everything is spectacular, and it's cheap.
Max Brenner - ***** - website
They've only been open a month and I've been there *way* too many times. Great chocolate pizza, chocolate fondue, milk shakes, everything is great. Bring your sweet tooth!
James Beard - ***** - website
This is a culinary institute that sponsors chefs in school. They have dinners at their location in West Village that cost $100 and are members only. These dinners are prepared by the best chefs from the world and all the money supports the institute. All the food and drinks and donated. We went to a dinner hosted by Riingo restaurant. $100 for a 5 course meal with Hors D'oeuvres, dessert, and wine pairings is a great deal. It was a delicious meal. You can see the chef preparing all the food and even talk to him in the kitchen. I'm very tempted to join James Beard, but there are so many restaurants in NY I want to try...
Ferrara Cafe - ***** - website
Cyndee bought me an assorted pastry platter from Ferrara delivered to my door. It was a beautiful selection of pastries. I had my doubts. Would it be as good as Venieros? Honestly, I think it's easily a notch or two better. Each piece was unique and delicious. I couldn't stop eating (and there was a lot to eat!)
Barmarche - **** - website
Beautiful restaurant though a bit cramped. Everything was fresh and delicious. New Zealand lamb, crab salad, chocolate cake, you can't go wrong with that.
Jane - **** - website
We had a large group go to Jane for New Year's Eve dinner. It was a prix Fixe meal and unlimited sparking wine. I thought they might skimp on us but they didn't. The food was fabulous and our champagne glasses were always full. They let us keep the table for a full 3 hours, and they even gave me and Aki a large glass full of chapagne on the way out to make sure we had a nice buzz :)
Mercadito - **** - website
Great tapas restaurants on Ave B. Good food, good service, beautiful restaurant, great margaritas. Get the Margarita del Mercado. And the guacamole.
Mercer Kitchen - ****
Incredible. Steamed Shrimp Salad with avocado, fish entree, delicious cheesecake. Great from start to finish. Looks like a great place to go for cocktails too. $24 lunch offered. We went for restaurant week.
Chanterelle - ****
Everything is great. Went for restaurant week lunch. Otherwise expensive.
Butter - **** - website
VERY cool, hip place. Great drinks (martinis). Amazing food. All around great. Check out review. I go back a lot!
City Bakery - **** - website
So much incredibly delicious food, you won't be able to decide what to get.
Nolita House - **** - website
Cool little bar in Nolita. Empanadas are great, burger is great, good Belgian beer. Apparently the cheese plate is one of the best in NY. Owner (Scott) is often bartending. Talked to him a lot about how he started up the place. It's fairly new. Highly recommended.
Artisanal - ****
Awesome! We went for restaurant week. We ordered the large cheese and meat plate which was delicious. I love cheese. The rest of the food was great as well. I had no room for dessert and took it home. I had that cheesecake later and it was fabulous.
Cafe Boulud - ****
Good French restaurant. Great service. Good for restaurant week. Check out my full review
The Burger Joint - ****
A hidden burger place inside the fancy Parker Meridien hotel. Great burgers and fries. Beats the Shake Shack, and you don't have to stand in line outside for 45 minutes (though that can be a good thing on a nice summer day).
Mamoun's Falafel - **** - website
After thinking Chickpea was king for almost a year, but hearing rumors about this place in the West Village, Mamouns opened up on St Marks just half a block from Chickpea. The falafel sandwich is tasty and cheap (2.50) but small so you can get 2 for a meal (or 1 is a perfect snack). The shwarma tastes better than Chickpea's but it's more processed meat so I don't know if that's a good thing. In any case, YUMMY cheap food.
Kati Roll - **** - website
I usually don't like heading over to this neighborhood around NYU, but it's on the way to my hair stylist. Well, it's worth going there for this place. The Undu Chicken (egg and chicken) is delicious. Get two, you will want another.
Dosa Man (NY Dosas) - **** - website
I never eat street food but I'll make an exception here. The masala dosa is spicy and delicious. You can drink sambar while you wait. There's also a dosa with fresh vegetables. Awesome.
Baluchi's - **** - website
Baluchi's is an Indian food chain in New York, but each chef is different. The food at the East Village location is some of the best Indian food i've ever had (except mom's home cooking!) And they are near all the crappy cheap Indian places on 6th street, so they have lots of special offers to compete on price. Service is also great.
Hip Hop Chow - **** - website
Asian/soul food fusion. Awesome. You have to get the ribs. BYOB so make sure to take drinks with you. Update: no longer byob.
Roy's New York - **** - website
Awesome Asian Hawaiian fusion. Great food and service. Check out my full review
Loreley - **** - website
Cool German beer garden with lots of indoor and outdoor seating (though I'm sure it still fills up in the summer). Lots of great beer. Food is good but not as good as Zum Schneider but the place is bigger so you don't wait as long.
Grimaldis - **** - website
If you are looking for a delicious, typical NY pizza, this is the best I've had. The crust and sauce are perfect. They don't use shredded mozerella cheese but real sliced cheeze from blocks. The sausage is fresh and uncooked when placed on the pizza before put in the oven. If this place was closer to me, I'd go all the time.
Patsy's - ****
Patsy's is about 95% as good as Grimaldis, and it's right by my house and the service is much better. I just found out there's a family tree for Grimaldis/Patsy's/Lombardis.
Lombardis - ****
About the same as Grimaldi's and Patsy's, not surprisingly. Maybe I'd put Grimaldi's a notch higher. Get the homemade meatballs on your pizza here. Best topping by far.
Zum Schneider - **** - website
Totally awesome beer spot. This place is packed so expect to wait a looong time (especially in the summers). Great selection of beer, and very, very good food. I think it was better than the sausage I had in Munich!
L'Express - **** - website
Awesome French place opened 24 hours. Great lamb burger!!!! Avoid the rush, get there at 3:30am (not 4am).
Bona Fides - **** - website
Another great italian place. Too bad it's second to In Vino.

Update: I ate here again. I thought the food was excellent and it was quite inexpensive. A great casual dinner spot.

Becco - **** - website
Excellent Italian place in the theater district. All you can eat pasta for $22. Great food. Dessert sampler for $5 is amazing. Best cheescake I've ever had. All desserts were incredible.
davidburke & donatella - **** - website
$24 LUNCH. Wow. So amazing. Great food. Get the lobster bisque. Go for the year round $24 lunch. Check out my full review. My most frequent nice lunch spot.
City Crab - ****
Delicious. Lobster burger. Great bread basket.
Blue Ribbon - ****
Fancy, interesting food concocuna pizza napoletana tions. Very experimental. You will get some interesting dishes that you might not find anywhere else. A good experience, but too expensive for what it is.
Indian Taj - **** - website
Got delivery from this place. Really great food. Mango chicken curry is awesome. Huge portions. THey also have a location in Jackson Heights, so you know they are authentic.
Sushi Yasuda - ****
Was here many years ago. Must go back now that I've been eating better sushi .
Freemans - ****
Great restaurant in LES hidden away down an alley. Near Lorely.
Chinese Mirch - ****
I love Chinese Indian (Chindian?) food! This place is great. highly recommended.
Dinosaur BBQ - **** - website
You have to go all the way to Harlem, but it's worth it! Lots of great beer too.
Steak Frites - **** - website
Good food, wine. Went during restaurant week, though prices aren't much higher normally.
Venieros pastry - ****
Great pastries, great coffee.
Poke ****
Great sushi in UES. Some of the best sushi i've ever had. Just fish, no chicken teriyaki here! BYOB
Momofuku noodles - **** - website
Always packed. You usually have to wait 30 minutes to get into this tiny place. But it's worth it. Noodles are delicious. Pork buns are awesome. Good selection of beer and sake.
Craftbar - **** - website
One of my best meals ever was at Craftsteak in Las Vegas. Craftbar is the lower end, casually restaurant. Still very good but not over the top like Craftsteak.
Banc Cafe - ****
yummy food, not expensive. good brunch, not crowded.
Rice to Riches - **** - website
All they do is rice pudding. Lots of great flavors to choose from. Don't get too much! The solo is good for 2, the epic is good for 4. Then order more if you need to (it's not cheap).
La Maison du chocolat - **** - website
Awesome cafe. Perfect location to take a break from a day in the MET.
Cafe Orlin - ****
great brunch, open 24 hours
Chickpea - **** - website
Get the shwafel sandwich with lamb, spicy cabbage, onions and lettuce. Lots of red and white sauce too.
Joe's Shanghai - ****
China Town. Get the soup dumplings!
Cosi - ****
It's a bit chain sandwich place, but they make very good sandwiches (Pesto chicken!) and some of the best coffee in NY.
Tabla - **** - website
Roy and I went to Tabla for lunch. It's not indian food, but American/French food with Indian spices and twists. I've never had food like this before and I really liked it. All the indian influences were well blended with the other flavors. The restaurant interior was beautiful, reminding me of the Gaudi architecture I saw in Barcelona. Go for lunch (prix fixe). Dinner is expensive!
San Loco - ***
Mexican food chain similar in taste and menu to Taco Bell. Except everything is fresh, all the chicken is white meat, etc. Delicious! I get hooked on this place once in a while and go back for several meals in a row.
$24 LUNCH. Good scandinavian food.
Perry Street - *** - website
$24 LUNCH. Pretty good, not that special.
Calle Ocho - *** - website
a bunch of Phi Psis went to Calle Ocho for dinner. It's all the way on the Upper West Side. The interior of the restaurant is spacious and very cool. The food was good, and even though it was restaurant week, the portions were HUGE. I had to take my dessert to go.
Yeah Shanghai - *** - website
I just wanted some soup dumplings. They were pretty good. A little cold. Service wasn't great. But they only cost $4 for 8 :)
Basso Est - *** - website
Very good italian place in LES, but with In Vino just blocks away, why bother?
Buddakan - *** - website
Food was so-so. Not great but passable. A little expensive for what you got. Cocktails were fabulous. Had a drink that was Hendrick's gin with Raspberry Sake and some other stuff. The restaurant itself is beautiful and always packed.
Cronkite Pizzeria and Wine Bar - *** - website
Gary and I were super excited about this place opening in the LES. It's the same chef as Fornino. Unfortunately my first visit was disappointing. I am going to give it another shot, though. CLOSED!
Kuma Inn - ***
Good Thai style tapas in a hidden, upstairs LES location.
English is Italian - *** - website
Great food, friendly service. It's basically all you can eat with lots of variety. Check out my full review
Ray's Pizza and Bagel Cafe - ***
Maybe I'm biased because this is the the closest food to me, but I think it's excellent pizza, and good everything else. Go in there to check out the murals on the walls.
Chinatown Brasserie - *** - website
Good chinese food, dim sum, etc. Trendy place with a young crowd, great cocktails.
Yaffa Cafe - ***
Open 24 hours and delicious.
Nina Argentinian Pizzeria - *** - website
Great pizza with some unique toppings.
Witchcraft - ***
Sandwich shop (related to Craft). Good but a little expensive for what you get. I prefer a deli sandwich.
Indochine - ***
The food was good all around, but not great. The cocktails were very good. The service was horrible. Overall a good restaurant, but nothing special that makes me want to go back.
Tasti D Lite - *** - website
All over New York. Good frozen yogurt with few calories.
One If By Land - *** - website
Very, very good food but a little overpriced. Great deal during restaurant week.
Momofuku Ssam - *** - website
Burrito type wraps. Delicious.
Applewood - ***
Very good restaurant in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Nice, homey atmosphere. A bit overpriced for small portions, but it is high quality food. Don't order the margarita.
Vintage - *** - website
Nice little place in Hells Kitchen. Get the quesadillas!
Cafe d'Alsace - ***
Huge beer selection, good french food, great service.
Payard - ***
Good food, great patries. Go for coffee and dessert. Buy a box of chocolates! Check out my full review
Dim Sum in China Town - ***
Can't remember the name of the place I go with Tony and Kate but it's good.
Craftsteak - *** - website
One of my best meals ever was at Craftsteak in Las Vegas. This Craftsteak was good but not as good. Definitely overpriced. The burger is a great deal at $15. It's probably the nicest restaurant you can just walk into with no reservation. This can be both good and bad. But if you crave a nice restaurant at the last minute, go here.
The Post House - *** -
Paul and I went for National Wine Week. The Filet Mignon was very good but the vegetables were pretty bad. Overall good food. *However* since we went for National Wine Week we got unlimited wine for $10. We were there for about 3 hours total and definitely drank our share. The waiters were great and poured us as much wine as we could drink. Highly recommended for next year's National Wine Week. Year 2: Just as good. We walked in and the waitress said "What's up guys, ready to get drunk?" Wow. It was awesome.
Shake Shack - ***
Great burgers (high quality meat), good fries, great shakes. Served in Madison Square Park. Also serve beer and wine so you can drink at the park on a nice day. Highly recommended, though the 1 hour line sucks.
Zen Noodle House - ***
Cool noodle place on St Marks. Cheap and good. 2 for 1 happy hour. $6 pitchers after 10pm. Half price sushi!!
Ghenet - *** - website
Ethiopian food in Nolita. Spicy bean curry and chicken curry were great. Supposedly they have great Tiramisu!?
Pommes Frites - *** - website
Great belgian fries with a bunch of different sauces. Great (fatty!) snack.
Beard Papa - *** - broadway at 8th st
Great cream puffs
Australian Homemade - *** - website
St marks near Ave A. Awesome ice cream, and great little chocolates. Perfect dessert after dinner in that area.
The Spotted Pig - ***
Cool place in the West Village. Had the burger which was pretty good, not great. Basically meat with fancy cheese on top. Most of the menu is pretty unique stuff. Service was so-so. I think they are famous because of the changing menu which has very interesting items on it.
barbone - ***
Great outdoor garden seating. Food is good, not great.
S'Mac - *** - website
All they serve is macaroni and cheese in different flavors. It's yummy!
Dumpling Man - *** - website
Good dumplings. Pretty cheap. check out the webcam!
Fanellis - ***
chicken club was awesome
Park Avenue Cafe - *** - website
Good food, beautiful restaurant. TERRIBLE service. But they have a "pay your age" dinner so I can get a 3 course dinner for $26. Definitely a great deal for high quality food.
Saigon Grill - **
I only had the Pho and it was bland and watered down. Update: went again. The pho was pretty bland and there was very little meat. After adding a bunch of salt, pepper, and hot sauce, it did end up tasting pretty good. But it's not really worth it. I haven't tried anything else here.
White Castle - **
I had to try it. Went there in Queens on the way back from the US Open with Joe (Harold and Kumar). Food was pretty terrible. But was fun to check it out :)
WD-50 - ** - website
I guess this is or was one of the most cutting edge restaurants in New York. Maybe it was too cutting edge for me. Food wasn't that special, very expensive. Don't recommend at all.
Brasserie - **
The restaurant is cool but the food is just not that good. And it's very expensive. not recommended at all.
Delmonico's - *
Overpriced steakhouse in financial district. Check out my full review
Il Cantinori - *
Overpriced. Ordinary. Check out my full review
Aureole
Terrible service, food was good. Wouldn't go back.
Corner Bistro
Often said to be one of the best burgers in New York. The burger was very good, but really nothing that special. Other than that, the fries sucked, bad service, and the places wasn't very clean. Maybe it's better for drinks and a burger on the side, rather than a lunch outting.
The Chocolate Bar - website
Next door to Corner Bisto. How can you not walk in when you see all the chocolate? Mocha was good but ordinary. Mint chocolate piece was good. Chocolate chip cookie with orange was awesome.
Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory
Good ice cream. Great views of Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge. Near Grimaldi's Pizza.
Amy Ruth's - website
Had southern style Chicken and Waffles at this restaurant in Harlem. DELICIOUS. Totally worth the trip. And you can walk back through Central Park (if it's not dark yet!)
Azuki Sushi - website
Good Japanese that delivers to me.
Ido Sushi - website
I think Meena walked into this place randomly in the West Village. Really really good sushi.
Cooper 35 (Asian Pub)
A 20 second walk from my apartment. $4 drinks all night (about as cheap as it gets in NY). Asian style food is very good. High quality incredients, cheap. Vegetable and tofu curry with rice for $6.
Crif Dogs - website
Forget about the normal New York hotdog and get something extraordinary. The menu is full of hot dogs with all sorts of toppings. I got a bacon wrapped dog with pineapple. It was awesome.
Blue 9 - website
In N Out style burger, but not quite as good. Ok if you are in the mood for In N Out.
Klong - website
Good, cheap Thai food. Happy hour for 2 for 1 drinks. Good curries.
Pio Pio - website
Great Peruvian chicken. everything here is great.
Why Curry? - website
More good, cheap Thai food. Curry puffs are great and Drunken noodles!
12 Chairs - website
Nice cafe. Get the Moroccan fish, and the Orange Chocolate cake for dessert.
Uptown
UES restaurant, fixed dinner for $45 for 2 including a bottle of wine. awesome food. stuffed chicken, spinach dip
dtut
Very cool coffee shop. feels like friends. make your own smores at your table
Sultan
UES. Great Turkish food. Pretty cheap. Might be closed now?
Subway - website
How can I live without Subway. Just a block away and as good as California! Couple guys working there are from Nepal and Gujarat, India.
Je'Bon
Noodle house on St Mark's. Awesome location, huge space. Terrible food, no beer license. Just go to Zen noodle house instead.
Blue Smoke - website
BBQ place. Sides were good, meat wasn't so great.
Room 4 Dessert - website
Expensive and lame. Trying to be a cool SoHo place.
Minetta Tavern - website
So so Italian restaurant. Reminds me a lot of Bona Fides, but add 50% to your bill since now you're in the West Village. Save some cash, walk half a mile to Bona Fides. Or take a cab to In Vino and you will be happier.
Town Restaurant - website
Very unimpressive food. Terrible service. Rude waiter. Overbilled. Expensive. Don't go here.
Nice Matin - website
Pretty average food. Way overpriced for what it is.
original sandwich
Cafe Gitane
Crumbs
Huge muffins. Not as good or fresh as Magnolia's.
Magnolia
They are good muffins, but I wouldn't stand in line for an hour for them.
la paella
empire schedzuan - good chinese delivery
better burger in UES
good turkey burger, baked fries ok. not that healthy (they pretend they are)
Veselka
Crappy indian restaurants on 6th st
brick lane - ok, over done, expensive
virage: 11.50 brunch, fresh oj, huevos rancheros
Amy's bread
Good muffins and stuff.
Eatery - website
Good food and service, if you find yourself in mid town west.
sushi park
A Salt and Battery
good fish and chips
humus place - good hummus, a little expensive. they have turkish coffee
Benny's burritos - 6th st and Ave A
good, simple, high quality $8 burrito, not mission style though, bad sangria. Good guacamole.
johns pizza on bleeker, ok
Sweet rhythm
West Village. Good music, burger, scallops
new korean place - eemo on 1st ave. good korean but overpriced. sake and soju
Indian Bread Co.
Disappointed. Dry and flavorless.
khyber pass - website
not that good. portions small, expensive. don't bother.
Food to try
MAJOR RESTAURANTS TO EAT AT BEFORE LEAVING NY
Masa, Jean Georges, Babbo, Nobu
MORE RESTAURANTS TO EAT AT BEFORE LEAVING NY
Tavern on the Green, Balthazar, Pastis, Spice Market, Chinatown Brasserie for dim sum, Vong, Pravda for chicken Kiev, Sushi Samba, Clinton Street Baking Co, Le Cirque, Lure Fishbar
All year $24 lunch to do
Gotham Bar and Grill, Tocqueville, Fleur De Sel, Tribeca Grill, Tao, Asia de Cuba, Jean Georges, Petrossian, Nougatine
Dessert
Cones, Sundaes and Cones, cookies @ Birdbath, 1st Ave 13/14th, Il Laboratoria del Gelato, Sugar Sweet Sunshine, ChikaLicious
Outdoor eating - website
Other
Union Square Cafe, Blue Ribbon Sushi, Bouley, Bilboquet, Cote d Or, Lil Frankies Pizza, Telepan, Django, Rene Pujol, Asia De Cuba (GET THE PORK), Cube 63, Norma's, Casa Mono, Barrio Chino, Il Mulino, Otto, Five Points, Veritas, The E.U., Craft, Little Branch, Cafe Espagnol, 2nd Avenue Deli, Mexicana Mama Centro, Knife and Fork, Bao 111, zerza bar, awash, mancora, the bagel zone, una pizza napoletana, Tocquerville, Goblin Market, Taim falafel
Bars done
Angel's Share - ***** - website
My favorite bar in New York. Tiny little place with great beer and cocktails. Quiet, relaxing, hidden. Rated one of the best bars in the world
Death & Co - *****
Another winner. Great drinks, great service, and really close to me. I love it.
Back Room - *****
Owned by Tim Robbins. Has a secret back room. Best bar EVER. great drinks, great music, not crowded, nice staff, comfy chairs. I love it.
Milk & Honey - ***** - website
As secret as they get. Secret address, phone number changes every few months, and you have to call and make a reservation to get in. Drinks are AMAZING but expensive ($15). Highly recommend checking this place out, if you can get in.
Double Happiness - *****
Great drinks, great music, and cheap!
Jimmy's 43 - ***** - website
My favorite beer bar. Awesome German and Belgian beer selection. Serve food also. Owner, Jimmy, is super cool. Opened 6 months earlier. He hooked us up with free beer samples. A real beer connoisseur who knows his beer and selects each one they serve. Highly recommended.
vol de nuit - ***** - website
Great Belgian beer place in west village. AWESOME mussels and fries. Awesome beer.
Hop Devil Grill and Belgian room - ***** - website
Great bar. Huge beer selection.
Shebeen - ***** - website
Another great bar. in Soho. Great mixed drinks.
The East Side Company Bar - ***** - website
totally secret bar. you have to know its address to find it. good cocktails. Some of the icy, fruity drinks have little alcohol in them. Applejack Sour is great.
Campbell Apartment - **** - website
Really cool lounge inside Grand Central. Lots of comfy chairs, great cocktails.
Nolita House - **** - website
Cool little bar in Nolita. Empanadas are great, burger is great, good Belgian beer. Apparently the cheese plate is one of the best in NY. Owner (Scott) is often bartending. Talked to him a lot about how he started up the place. It's fairly new. Highly recommended.
10 Degrees - **** - website
Great wine bar on St Marks and Ave A. Awesome block.
Swift - **** - website
Awesome place. Great beer selection, pretty big space, good music at the right volume.
Decibal Sake Bar - ****
Very cool, hidden little place.
Union Hall - ****
Great bar in Park Slope. Bocce ball available. I think they also have live music.
Crocodile Lounge - **** - website
Free pizza with every drink. and Skeeball! Very cool place. trivia nights. cool bartenders. Dive bar.
Fifty Seven Fifty Seven - **** - website
Great martini bar in the four seasons. $20 each, but they include the shaker so it's like one and half martinis. Huge selection with lots of fancy fresh fruits and things.
Pianos - ****
Cool hipster bar. Great live music. Awesome place.
Mercury Lounge - ****
Saw Voxtrot play. Also Robbers on High Street. I definitely need to see more live music.
Pravda - **** - website
Russian vodka bar. Mixed drinks and martinis are good but not strong. Rated one of the best in the world. Great atmosphere. Good food.
Puck Fair - ***
very cool chill bar. not loud. good music
Hi Fi - *** - website
Good drink specials, great juke box.
Heidelberg - ***
German beer in the UES.
230 Fifth - website
Nicknamed "Miami Beach" because that's the feel. HUGE roof top bar with great views.
Russian Vodka Room
I really don't like vodka but otherwise this place is cool.
phoebes ale
Red Sky Bar & Lounge - website
Cool bar with rooftop access.
The Park - website
Didn't eat dinner here, just drinks. It's hard to get in unless you have girls and guys. Drinks are good, a little expensive. But the place is huge and very cool.
Pegu Club - website
Sorta sucked. Expensive, bad drinks. Bad food. Cool atmosphere I guess.
Employees Only
Great bar, great drinks in West Village
The Delancey
Cool bar on the Manhattan end of the Williamsburg bridge. Has a roof, but there's a cover to go up.
Union Pool
Bar in Williamsburg with outdoor seating.
Japas Karaoke
Went here a lot when I first moved to NY. Fun little place, nice staff.
Bob's
Good club in LES. Great music.
Odessa
Spent too much time here when our friend, Jeff, was bartending.
Libation
Beauty Bar
Hotel Gansevoort
Bar at the top of the hotel in meat packing. Views of New Jersey (which aren't that nice). Mostly B&T. Skip it.
Maritime
Another crap bar in meat packing. Skip it.
Camel
Korean club. Spent way too much time here when I first moved to NY.
Mercury Bar, Joshua Tree, Bar 515
All next to each other on 3rd ave.
Players
Random bar in Korea town
Gatsby's
Sports bar in Soho. Nothing special, but an ok place to watch sports events.
Bars to try
Rooftop bars - website
Bohemian Hall in Astoria - website
The Rook
Bouche Bar
Rise Bar
The Auction House
Snitch - website
Ping pong tables!
Slate Plus and Fat Cat
Ping pong tables!
13 - website
Blue Owl
Sin Sin
Burp Castle
Another Belgian place, a block from me. Been there for a while.
Attractions done
I loved it! Great show. Very fun, good music, great acting. Cheesy but fun. The crowd gets into it. They claim "people are dancing in the aisles." While not exactly true, I could see it happening :).
Whitney Museum of American Art
Really, really great. Went for the 70s era art exhibit. Loved it and everything else there. Highly recommended.
The Daily Show
Totally cool. Got to sit in the front row, center. Jon Stewart rocks. Went a second time also.
New York Transit Museum
Very cool museum! See the history of the NY subway system. The museum is in an old subway station. Takes about 2 hours to see it all.
Conan O'Brian
The overall experience was much, much better than a Daily Show taping. We were only in line for about one hour for just over an hour of entertainment (vs 2 hours in line for a 24 minute Daily Show). The studio is much nicer, though still much smaller than you would expect.

Overall there was a lot more energy in the program. Conan O'Brien is hilarious. Plus everyone got a free tshirt. You can't beat all that for a free show!

The Late Show with David Letterman
Even better than Conan! If you are visiting New York, this is the one to do. It's in the Ed Sullivan theater on Broadway. The set is gorgeous. The backdrop behind Dave isn't just an image of NY part a #D model with bridges, buildings, and lights. The entire taping experience was great from start to finish.
Comix
Great comedy club on W 14th St. Every seat in the house is good. Good bar. Food menu looks good but wasn't. We saw Janeane Garofalo and Marc Maron. Not bad for $25. Much better than the crappy comedy clubs in the West Village.
Museum of the Moving Image - website
Really great museum in Queens. Shows technical history of film, as well as lots of exhibits and props from movies. Highly recommended.
Tennis US open
I went on a Thursday for both the day and evening sessions. In the day I stuck to the small grounds courts and saw some great matches up close. At night I saw Federer vs Blake in the quarter finals. Lots of fun, highly recommended.
MET
Really amazing museum. So much great stuff to see from all over the world. They have 60 hours of audio tours and I really want to do it all over the next year. A great place to spend a rainy day.
Brooklyn Museum
Saw the Annie Leibovitz photo exhibit, Ron Mueck scultures (amazing!) and more. Highly recommended.
The Phantom of the Opera
It was ok.
Yankees game
I went for a day game when we had the day off from work. Surprisingly easy to get to Yankee stadium from East Village (maybe 30 minutes at most). Fun game. No bad seats really. The bleachers are alcohol free.
Avenue Q
Very funny, good show.
The Producers
Pretty funny. not great
Rent
Good show.
Bronx Zoo
Not as good as Portland zoo or San Diego, but not bad. Tigers are awesome. Don't miss the polar and grizzly bears. You have to take the monorail ($5) to see certain parts of the zoo
NY Aquarium
In Coney Island. Pretty ghetto. Very old and lots of exhibits shut down. It was free when we went. I don't think I would pay $12 to see this. Only interesting things were the giant walrus, hairy crab, and the sharks.
Coney Island
Went on July 4 for Nathan's Famous hot dog eating contest. Also watched a World Cup game in Brighton Beach.
Macys July 4 Fireworks
2006 - saw the South Street Seaport fireworks. Next year Midtown!
Top of the Rock
Went when my dad came to visit. Great views.
American Museum of Natural History - website
Saw the Darwin exhibit. And dinosaurs!
Guggenheim
Awesome building. Too bad there's exterior construction right now.
Apple Stores
Of course.
Bryant Park
Great place to hang out on a nice day. Click here for pictures
Hudson River, West Village
The Hudson River around the West Village is gorgeous. I've run this path many times. I now see the appeal of the W village though it's a little out of the way for me. I like being more central to lots of neighborhoods.
International Center of Photography - website
Cool photography exhibits. I need to go back for the permanent collection (need an appointment).
cooper hewitt national design museum
Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
Awesome. Better than I remembered. Make sure you make reservations in advance because thats the only way to get inside the status (though even then only to the top of the pedestal).
The Vertical Hour
Play starring Julianne Moore
Rockefeller Center
Checked out the Christmas Tree, ice skating, and more.
New York Public Library
Christmas on Fifth Avenue
Walked from 59th and Fifth down to my house, checking out all the window fronts and holiday shoppers.
Central Park
Can't say that I've spent a lot of time in Central Park, but I've walked through much of it and seen a lot of the major attractions (minus the zoo). Also walked through the northern part near Harlem.
Mohegan Sun - website
I went to play some blackjack at this casino in Connecticut. Very impressive! It's not just some random Indian reservation casino with just gambling. There's lots of great food, great shopping, an entire resort. It's very well done, and pretty much at the same quality level as Las Vegas.
MoMA | The Museum of Modern Art
Great museum, huge, lots of cool stuff to see. Loved the interior design, saw the Pixar exhibit, and of course, photography.
Bodies
Cool exhibit of human bodies. Lots of great info to read, but audio tour is probably better.
Corner Billiards - website
Great pool hall, good music and drinks.
Bowlmor Lanes - website
Bowling. Monday night, $20 unlimited.
New York Botanical Garden - website
Nice gardens in Brooklyn. I went when there was a Chihuly glass exhibit which was amazing. Pictures are here
Central Park Zoo
Surprisingly good zoo. I recommend it. Sea lions are cool. There are also polar bears, monkeys, penguins, and more. Pictures are here
Intrepid Museum - website
Saw lots of planes and the Concord. Good stuff.
New York City Opera
Saw Semele. My first opera!
Atlantic City
Took the bus on a Friday night from Port Authority. The bus costs $31 round trip and the casinos give you back $20 in cash. Atlantic City sucks. It was a ghost town even though it was a holiday weekend. The casinos are super ghetto. It seems like nothing has been remodelled. AC is fine to go to if you just want to gamble for a day, but forget it if you are looking for a cool boardwalk, bars, or clubs.
Attractions to do
More Broadway shows
Wicked and more
East Village tour
Bike all the way up the west side ave along the river
Christy's auction
Movies in Bryant Park
Prospect Park
NY Knicks game, Mets, Giants, Jets
Cloisters
SNL