Here are my 5 favorite restaurants in New York right now. These are the places I immediately think of, when friends ask me where to go for dinner or lunch. The list is updated every month, or whenever I feel there’s a need for adjustments.
Russ & Daughters Café
The cafe expansion of my favorite smoked fish deli doesn’t disappoint. A safe bet is The Classic which is Gaspe Nova served with cream cheese and your choice of either bagel, bialy, shissel rye or pumpernickel bread.
Russ & Daughters Cafe, 127 Orchard St, Lower East Side, New York
Prospect Heights neighborhood gem with excellent American Italian food and an interesting drinks menu. Faun is all the reason you need to go to Brooklyn, especially if you manage to get one of the tables outside.
Faun, 606 Vanderbilt Ave, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, New York
Murray’s Cheese Bar
Murray’s Cheese Bar is the go-to place for cheese monsters in New York. I’ve only recently started eating cheese (I still can’t eat the blue smelly ones) and Murray’s has been a great place to further explore what is out there.
Murray’s Cheese Bar, 264 Bleecker St, West Village, New York
Down-to-earth contemporary American restaurant with a very Nordic feel. Turned out that one of the chefs behind Contra in fact used to work at Noma. Contra has one Michelin star and the $84 tasting menu at this unpretentious, yet very Lower East Side hip, restaurant is really good value for money.
Contra, 138 Orchard St, Lower East Side, New York
I always say that ramen is one of the main reasons why I could never go vegan. I love ramen and the meatless versions I’ve had so far just never really hit the spot. Though the vegan XO Ramen at Nakamura makes even hardcore carnivores question the need for meat. I had the seasonal cold version of the XO Ramen and it was so good I still can’t believe it was actually vegan.
Nakamura, 172 Delancey St, Lower East Side, New York