NYC: To Eat

 New York City is bursting at the seams with good food and restaurants. I couldn’t possibly cover all of my best experiences on a single page, but I will give you a few favorites that I think are worthy of your time, whether you’re a resident or just visiting:
 
UPDATE 02/16/2016 – This page is a work in progress as my opinions have changed on a few of these (due to menu changes, new chefs, etc.). I’ve also acquired some new faves. Stay tuned!
 

DeStefano’s Steakhouse / Williamsburg
One of the best steaks in the city. Also, the short rib rolls appetizer is like a mini-meal rolled into a crispy wonton shell. It’s superb! Be prepared to spend a good amount of money here, but it’s well worth it. The service is among the best, in my opinion.

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{Mozzarella De Crustino Mushroom Duxelle at DeStefano’s}

Basil Brick Oven / Astoria
They use fresh, high-quality ingredients to make their amazingly delicious Neapolitan-style pizzas. The regina margherita and the pizzuca are my favorites.  Honorable mention: Motorino in the East Village has equally great Neapolitans. I like the cherrystone clam pizza a whole bunch.

La Bonne Soupe / Midtown West
Affordable, delicious, authentic French food in a neighborhood where that combination is hard to find. I have never had a meal here that was below fantastic — and I’ve eaten here a lot. The omelettes, crepes, pommes frites,  lasagna a la francaise, salads…it’s ALL great.

Momofuku Milk Bar / Multiple Locations
Get the cereal milk soft-serve with the Corn Flake crunchies. I don’t need to say anything more!

Akina Sushi / East Village
It’s a place one might ordinarily pass by and not even give a second glance. It’s small and not much in ambience, but the sushi here is terrific and noticeably fresh. The crispy duck and pancake appetizer, which is served with a delicious plum sauce, is reason enough to go. Any time Bob and I visit, we have to order one for each of us because neither of us like to share it!

L&B Spumoni Gardens / Bensonhurst
You would obviously go for the namesake. But their Sicilian is top-notch too.

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{Vanilla Spumoni at Spumoni Gardens}

Levain Bakery / Upper West Side
Any time I’m asked about where one should go in the city, my answer is this, “If you go nowhere else on my list, you must go to Levain”. The enormous cookies, both in size and taste, are amazing! I love the double chocolate cookie best. It’s a serious chocolate lover’s dream.

Brick Cafe / Astoria
Whenever I’m looking to go out to dinner close to home, this is always my first choice. The food is impressive and it’s beautifully and simply presented. They have a little something for every taste, so I wouldn’t hesitate to bring my diverse group of friends or family here. My favorite dish is the grilled branzino. It’s always cooked so perfectly.

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{Asparagus and caviar appetizer at Brick}

The Chocolate Room / Park Slope
A lot of people go to Serendipity 3 for the frozen hot chocolate. But what some don’t know is that The Chocolate Room makes the same frozen hot chocolate at half the wait time. Its other chocolate desserts are equally tantalizing. A testament to how good this place is: a friend of a friend eats here, in spite of her chocolate allergy. I’ve actually witnessed her breaking out in hives as she was devouring the brownie!

Home / West Village
An unassuming, wonderful farm-to-table restaurant tucked away on a quiet street. The ingredients used are fresh and local and they even make their own ketchup (!), which is really tasty. On warm days, the outdoor garden is the place to be.

steak and fries

{Hanger steak at Home}

The Halal Guys street cart / Midtown West
For about $6, you can get a huge chicken and rice platter with white sauce and a little free container of extra white sauce (because always extra white sauce). I like to walk a few blocks over to Central Park and eat it on a bench there. It’s a guaranteed full belly.

For even more suggestions, click on Categories > Restaurants (clicking right here will bring you straight there!) for other restaurants I’ve enjoyed.

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