Upper East Side

Bluestone Lane

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Overview:

Melbourne-inspired coffee place offering Australian-style espresso drinks & cafe fare all day.

Information:

Address: 55 Greenwich Ave, New York, NY 10014

(multi location)

Phone: (718) 374-6858

Neighborhood: West Village, Upper East Side, Chelsea

Price: $$


 

Boqueria

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Overview:

Boqueria is a buzzing Flatiron tapas place that also has outlets in Soho & the Upper East side. All the spaces are cozy and sleek, packed with groups for lunch & dinner. The menu offers a non-stop parade of Spanish tapas options. You'll find tons of classics like bacon-wrapped dates, albóndigas (lamb meatballs), bacalao and pan con tomate served on huge charcuterie boards. Some heartier options include baby squid with white beans & squid ink, gambas with garlic & brandy, or hanger steak topped with chimichurri sauce. Service is good but the whole experience is totally enhanced by Toast Point of Sale, the tech platform powering their restaurant. Find out more on their site: here! 

Information:

Address:  53 W 19th St, New York, NY 10011

Phone: (646) 651-4654

Neighborhood: Flatiron, Soho, Upper East Side

Price: $$-$$$


 

Quality Eats

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Overview

The team behind Quality Meats & Italian have continued to expand their Quality Eats concept, now bringing it to Nomad. This spot is larger than the others but retains the same dark & vibey ambiance with a huge bar and a perfect playlist. While the menu may be slightly reminiscent of a steakhouse, the price and creativity level certainly aren't. Make a meal out of the starters like sausage & pepper toast, grilled bacon with peanut butter & jalapeno jelly, and grilled bucheron cheese. They offer mains like leg of lamb & lemon-charred chicken, but the patty melt club burger is where I'd park myself if I were you. 

Information

Address:  3 E 28th St, New York, NY 10016

Phone(212) 257-8882

Neighborhood: Flatiron, West Village, Upper East Side 

Price: $$$


 

Tavern 62 by David Burke

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Overview:

Tavern 62 by David Burke is the first new concept from ESquared Hospitality in partnership with Chef David Burke. The space is a regal, modern American tavern including an oak bar, solarium in the back, and a main dining room situated upstairs. They offer an all-day menu plus several private dining spaces. The menu features American plates as a reflection of Chef Burke’s contemporary approach to cooking, with a nod to elevated New York classics. In true creative Burke fashion the apps feature angry lobster dumplings, pretzel-crusted crab cakes, and octopus & chorizo kebabs. He brings his out-of-the-box thinking to entrees like peking pork shank, bison short rib with bbq prawns, and black rigatoni with seafood. 

Information:

Address: 135 E 62nd St, New York, NY 10065

Phone: (212) 988-9021

Neighborhood: Upper Easy Side

Price: $$$


 

2nd Floor at 2nd Ave Deli

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Overview:

I have always wondered why no one has bothered to do something modern and fun with traditional Jewish food. The team at their new space above 2nd Ave Deli has given me that gift. The multi-room venue has a speakeasy vibe with a pressed tin tile ceiling, reclaimed wood, and vintage theater posters. For the menu, chef David Teyf has taken ingredients that are ingrained in Jewish culture and spun them into modern dishes. There are duck confit blintzes, pastrami deviled eggs, tongue sliders and everything seed pigs-in-a-blanket. They put together quite possibly the most beautiful meat board you'll ever lay eyes on complete with beef jerky, pickled tongue, hard salami, chopped liver and smoked pastrami. In addition to the food being exciting and innovative, you can round out your experience with a huge craft cocktail menu. 

Information:

Address1442 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10021

Phone: (212) 737-1700

Neighborhood: Upper East Side   

Price: $$-$$$


 

2nd Ave Deli

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Overview:

2nd Ave Deli is one of the last hold outs in NYC of truly classic Jewish appetizing shops. It's actually not on Second Avenue anymore, but everything else will be the same. The long standing restaurant might not be as well known as Katz, but honestly this is a much more pleasant dining experience than being assaulted by 300 tourists and the food is fantastic. They specialize in overstuffed sandwiches & other kosher staples done the long, slow way like my Jewish grandmothers made. Sandwiches are stacked with chopped liver, pastrami, grilled salami & corned beef and can easily feed 2-3 people. Other traditional favorites include blintzes, pierogies, kreplach, potato pancakes & matzoh brei. Service is warm and while prices may look initially high keep in mind that portions are massive and meant to be shared. 

Information:

Address:   162 E 33rd St, New York, NY 10016

1442 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10021

Phone:  212-689-9000

Neighborhood: Upper East Side, Kips Bay

Price: $$


 

San Matteo Pizzeria e Cucina

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Overview

San Matteo is the kind of place you'd probably find yourself a few times a week if you lived in the neighborhood. Cozy, friendly neighborhood spot with tons of carbs and an affordable wine list. The food won't change your life but the menu is full of approachable Italian favorites. For great share options try the creamy burrata antipasti or crispy arancini balls. Pizzas arrive to you smokey from the wood burning oven in the center of the room. Nice, neighborhood space for a casual date or dinner with a group. 

Information:

Address:  1559 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028

Phone: (212) 861-2434

Neighborhood: Upper East Side

Website : http://www.sanmatteonyc.com/

Price: $$

Attire: Casual

Good for: families, groups, pizza, brunch, takeout & delivery, watching sports 


 

Villard

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Overview:

Legendary chef's upscale bistro offering American breakfast fare in a striking baroque setting at the Lotte NY Palace Hotel

Information:

Address: 455 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10022

Phone:  (212) 891-8100

Neighborhood: Midtown East

Website: https://www.lottenypalace.com/villard

Price: $$$


 

Flex Mussels


Overview:

 Two locations of this seafood house - one Upper East Side cozy locale, and a Chelsea outpost on the first floor of a stately brownstone. The menu offers the same 23 excellent and seasonally changing variations on moules frites as well as a smattering of tasty if somewhat puny seafood dishes. Pounds of chef Michael Sullivan's meaty P.E.I.’s can be savored with simple, white-wine-based broths or with more distinctive concoctions. Brunch on the weekends is excellent as well. 

Information:

Address:   154 W 13th St, New York, NY 10011

174 E 82nd St, New York, NY 10028

Phone: (212) 229-0222

Neighborhood: Upper East Side, Chelsea

Website: http://www.flexmussels.com/

Price: $$-$$$


 

Vaucluse

Photo: Eater.com

Photo: Eater.com

I don’t much go for restaurants in the Upper East Side. I don’t think a lot of creativity lives up there in terms of restaurants. What does live up there is a lot of high maintenance women who demand no salt, no oil, no flavor, you know what let me just rework this dish myself because you’re my personal chef. Sorry, my PTSD from being a waitress on 62nd street flared up! I took a chance on Vaulcluse last night and I am thrilled to say it is a meal I couldn’t wait to write about.

Vaucluse opened a year ago in the space that was formerly occupied by Park Avenue Café. The company behind the restaurant is Chef Michael White’s Alta Marea Group. They are the team behind wonderful hits like Marea, Osteria Morini, and Ai Fiori. The space engulfs you in NY glam & charm. Everything is polished to a T with deep grey banquettes, high detailed ceilings, and white table clothes. Old NY money is waited on by servers in proper waiter coats who make sure that your water and your drinks are constantly full.

Most of the restaurants in the group are Italian. Vaucluse is a departure from that, with a French menu. The menu is not cheap, but you do get what you pay for. You’ll find raw bar, homemade pastas, and plenty of intricately plated meat & fish options. The presentation of the food was flawless and there wasn’t a single extra ingredient on any of the dishes. There is tremendous restraint plating an asparagus dish as an appetizer with under 5 ingredients. The pasta we had was cooked to perfection and set in a rich trumpet mushroom puree. For entrees I experienced the best cooked pieces of fish and chicken I have ever put in my mouth. Then I had the pleasure of devouring the famed White Label Burger with the perfect blend of fontina cheese, tomato jam and dijonnaise.  A don’t mind getting fancy from time-to-time, and I loved doing it at Vaucluse. Here’s what we had:

 

Asperges Blanches - jumbo white asparagus, hollandaise, sunflower, smoked salmon

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Etoile de Fromage – comte ravioli, peas, trumpet royal, pine nuts

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Loup de Mer Farci – Mediterranean bass, shrimp mousseline, spring pea ragout, piquillo pepper

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Poulet Rôti aux Olives - roasted organic chicken, provencal olives, la ratte potatoes, lardons

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White Label Burger- aged beef blend, fontina cheese, tomato jam, dijonnaise

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Mousse aux Fruits Rouges - vanilla bean bavarois, pomegranate, rasberry sorbet

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Gateaux Chocolat - mocha crémeux, chocolate genoise, caramel glace

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Address: 100 E 63rd St, New York, NY 10065

Phone:(646) 869-2300

altamareagroup.com/

JG Melon

Photo: Eater

Photo: Eater

They should change the phrase “as American as apple pie” to “as American as JG Melon”. This place screams good ol’ fashioned America. There are two locations in NYC. The original is in the Upper East Side and has been in business since 1972. People love this neighborhood staple and have been coming here for decades. An offshoot of the place was opened in Soho recently by a different owner, who also runs Magnolia Bakery and The Mermaid Inn. They share the name and the decor, but many say the food is better uptown. I think what people taste uptown is the nostalgia in the walls, which adds a lot of flavor you cant replicate. Otherwise, the food at both places is very similar. Truth be told I don't go above 23rd street unless someone holds a gun to my head. So, I feel the downtown location is packs everything i need. 

The environment is lively, loud, and full of people of all ages. There is wood lining everything, dark green paint on the walls, and checkered green table clothes. The food is as American as it gets. Lots of salty fried things, wings, and cheesy concoctions between bread. The star here is the famed juicy burger which many people say is the best in the city. It's simply meat, bread, cheese, and pickles on a small plate- no fuss. They have fantastic fried pickles to dip in ranch and a slew of other sandwiches like pulled pork and grilled cheese. You’ll find a big bar at both locations and tons of beer on tap. It’s your classic beer and burger spot to hang out with friends and be loud. If you can’t appreciate that, I don’t want anything to do with you. Here’s what we had:

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