New York City can be overwhelming. It’s not just the lights of Times Square, or the incessant honking of taxi cab horns  – it’s the food, all the glorious food. Whether you’ve been there once or 10 times, there are so many restaurant options that trying to choose just one can feel like navigating an endless labyrinth of secret corners and intriguing doorways. The extraordinary diversity of New York City means that dumplings, noodles, Southern comfort food, lobster rolls, borscht, and labneh, not to mention the classic standbys of Italian cuisine and pizza, are all on the menu in New York City. Whether you’re looking for a romantic date night, need a kid friendly restaurant that caters to big, noisy groups, or you want to splurge on a fancy night out on the town, here are Matador’s picks for the New York city restaurants for every occasion.


Best restaurants in New York City for romance

1. Don Angie

 

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The intimate, candlelit dining room is one of the most chic spaces in New York City. While it’s difficult to snag a reservation here, it’s worth trying. This might be one of the trendiest tables in New York City, but the food at Don Angie lives up to its reputation. The lasagna – noodles rolled into the shape of flowers and stuffed with cheese — is legendary, and it now has a Michelin star.

Where: 03 Greenwich Ave, New York, NY 10014

Price: $$$

2. Pies -N- Thighs

 

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For a romantic brunch, but cozy, and boozy, try this fried chicken and biscuits cafe in Brooklyn is a good spot for a first date – or a hung over lunch with your significant other accompanied by some hair of the dog. In the summer, sit outside on one of the picnic tables and enjoy a selection of the restaurant’s natural wines. The pies have real star power at Pies -N- Thighs. Banana cream and bourbon pecan stand out, but you’ll want to come back to try a slice of each one.

Where: 166 S 4th St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Price: $$

3. Buvette

This charming bistro where the walls are exposed brick and the tables are packed close together serves elegant French food in New York City’s trendy West Village neighborhood. Slow cooked duck, chicken simmered in red wine, steamed mussels, and escargots are just a few of the dishes that give Buvette a Parisian cafe feel.

Where: 42 Grove St, New York, NY 10014

Price: $$

Best restaurants in New York City for a fun night out

4. Mary’s Fish Camp

 

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The lively atmosphere at Mary’s Fish Camp in posh and charming Greenwich Village might fool you into thinking you’re enjoying dinner at a beach side shack. You’ll hear lots of hype around the lobster roll here – but it’s hype that’s well earned. In the evenings, Mary’s Fish Camp gets hectic, and with tables so close together, it might feel cramped. In the daytime, the atmosphere is much more relaxed.

Where: 64 Charles St, New York, NY 10014

Price: $$$

5. Via Carota

Classic pasta dishes are done to perfection at this West Village institution. Dim lights and dark wood floors and tables give this restaurant a romantic atmosphere. The dish to order at Via Carota is the cacio e pepe. Just be warned that the restaurant is walk-in only, and there is always a line. You’ll wait a couple hours for a table, but stick it out. You don’t want to leave New York City without eating at Via Carota.

Where: 51 Grove St, New York, NY 10014

Price: $$$

6. Congee Village

 

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Big groups will find themselves right at home at Congee Village. Each table is outfitted with a lazy susan, which makes sharing the signature Cantonese dishes easy. The portions are big, and the food arrives at the table quickly. There are even private karaoke rooms. Notable dishes include fried shrimp, congee with blue crab, steamed bass, and stir fried shrimp.

Where: 100 Allen St, New York, NY 10002

Price: $$

7. Shukette

 

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Middle Eastern cuisine is on the menu at this lively Chelsea restaurant. Kebabs and seafood, like grilled shrimp, as well as a rainbow of roasted vegetables all stand out. Small plates, like hummus and labneh make for good snacking. The open kitchen concept at Shukette lends itself to a casual, fun atmosphere.

Where: 230 9th Ave, New York, NY 10001

Price: $$

Best restaurants in New York City for families

8. Veselka

 

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This casual diner has been serving Ukrainian food in the East Village since 1954. The pierogi are especially legendary, but you’ll also find borscht and stuffed cabbage on the menu. Veselka is family friendly, but with 24-hour service, you’ll also find lots of late-night, post-party crowds here.

Where: 144 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

Price: $$

9. Nom Wah Tea Parlor

This Chinatown institution is where everyone who visits New York City should have dim sum. The dining room has vintage, old New York feel (after all the restaurant has been open since 1920) and extensive menu offers the opportunity to try classic dim sum dishes. You could eat to excess at Nom Wah, kids in tow, so bring your appetite.

Where: 13 Doyers St, New York, NY 10013

Price: $

10. Roberta’s

 

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By now, East Williamsburg in Brooklyn is known for its hipster vibes, and Roberta’s certainly embodies that stereotype. Luckily, the wood fired pizza lives up to the hype and makes it worth a stop. The Neopoltian style pies are sometimes made from ingredients grown in the restaurants’ rooftop garden, so expect freshness. Outfitted with long wooden communal tables, the dining room is well suited to families and big groups.

Where: 261 Moore Street. Brooklyn, NY 11206

Price: $$

Where to stay in New York City

To eat at all the iconic restaurants New York City has to offer, you’ll need to stay awhile. The hotels below are centrally located and well-reviewed. However, there are also plenty of New York City Airbnbs that offer experiences like yoga in Central Park, and sailing on the East River.

We hope you love the spaces and stays we recommend! Just so you know, Matador may collect a small commission from the links on this page if you decide to book a stay. Listed prices are accurate as of the time of publication.

Where to stay in Brooklyn

The Wythe Hotel

 

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Staying at the Wythe Hotel puts visitors right in the heart of busy Williamsburg, with industrial decor and floor-to-ceiling windows in every room. But it’s the on-site restaurants that make Wythe stand out. Indoors, the 6th-floor cocktail bar offers stunning views of Manhattan, while Le Crocodile serves up a delicious taste of France along the East River waterfront.

Where: 80 Wythe Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11249

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Where to stay in Manhattan

The Jane Hotel

 

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Looking for a taste of the past? Look no further than this retro hotel built in 1908 in Manhattan’s West Village. Originally built to house sailor, the rooms are still reminiscent of ship’s cabins. Book a Standard Cabin – a no-frills 50-square-foot accommodation with shared bathroom that will rock you to sleep dreaming of old New York City ghosts.

Where: 113 Jane St, New York, NY 10014

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High Line Hotel

This historic building was erected in 1895 as a dormitory for the General Theological Assembly and its gothic brick facade takes visitors back in time. But look closely and you’ll find that modern amenities have been added to make your stay even more comfortable. From complimentary Shinola bicycles to an Intelligentsia coffee bar, to a double-decker London bus serving cocktails and snacks, the High Line Hotel is designed for well-heeled travelers.

Where: 180 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011

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