Since you've probably spent the first half of Summer lounging around on beaches and rooftops instead of slavishly tracking the best July restaurant openings in NYC, we’ve put together a cheat sheet to help get you up to speed. Time to go breakfast taco-ing!
This expanding taco stand (already with locations in the West Village and Flatiron) is getting in on the excellent Gotham West Market action with its Mexican beachside-style eats, which include tacos, burritos, tostadas, and actually somewhat-of-a-rarity breakfast tacos. Get there early.
Super-weirdly housed inside of an Urban Outfitters on N 6th St in Williamsburg, this Scottish/Jewish LA import (from Knife Fight-er and Top Chef season 2 winner Ilan Hall) is flaming up wood fire-grilled goods like banh mi poutine (!?), bacon-wrapped matzoh balls, and hanger steak with “mad onions”.
David Waltuck of Chanterelle (a dining destination that served lower Manhattan for 30 years) has a new spot on Park Ave South, where he'll do classics like his famous grilled seafood sausage along with newbies like sea urchin guacamole, stuffed chicken wings, General Tso’s sweetbreads, and fettuccine with scallops and duck fat. Also, shhhhhhhh, there’s a not-so-secret, off-menu duck burger (w/ bacon mayo, foie gras, and fig & caramelized onion chutney) that’s worth the trip alone.
There might not be anything better than eating amazing ice cream on an NYC rooftop, which means there might not be anything better than Ample Hills Creamery (remember this place?) -- a new combo ice cream shop/factory/rooftop lounge in Gowanus. Get the Pistachio Squared or the brand-new It Came From Gowanus.
After closing Seersucker to open up more space for their other spot, Nightingale 9, the same team has opened Wilma Jean in the old Nightingale 9 space (stay with us). They've got the same Southern vibe as Seersucker, married with a menu filled with double cheeseburgers, fried bologna sandwiches, fried pickles, and of course, fried chicken with buttermilk dressing.
Brother to Cherry at Dream Downtown, this split-leveler (with a beautiful, front-arched bar sporting a comfortable, raised dining room) is going all contemporary-Japanese on you with Suntory-glazed short ribs, chorizo-stuffed calamari, and sushi that's both traditional and outside of the box. Black Caesar roll with bacon and Caesar dressing, anyone?
If you’re in the West Village around 3am, you no longer need to hoof it over to the East Village to shove some of the city’s best hot dogs in your face. The new Crif Dogs outpost is doing our favorite, the Tsunami, plus the new-to-us Lil Ma, which is topped with peanut butter, pickles, and crushed chips.
Previously only out in Jackson Heights, this Korean fried chicken spot (which was VERY buzzed about during the Korean fried chicken boom of 2007) has finally brought its juicy/crispy fried chicken game to Manhattan. It's got options like a pork bulgogi burger and a whole chicken, all in the space that was formerly Apiary/Apres.
So, we’ve actually been talking quite a lot about this place. But in case you haven’t heard, there’s a gorgeous boat parked off Pier 25 that’s pairing oysters and cocktails with amazing views.
This interesting spot is an “American tasting room” that comes from a partner at neighborhood favorite Brooklyn Star, and comes with a rotating roster of chefs from places like Brooklyn Brewery, Best Pizza, and OTB. They each swing through on different nights and hook diners up with creative menus featuring everything from beer cheese to pork belly cracklins and root beer floats.
This Williamsburg resto is bringing the feel of a Malaysian night market to Grand St, with an open roti station (where it slings s’mores roti from its secret menu), herbal restorative drinks like the black & white “Michael Jackson”, burgers wrapped in egg and cheese, and soft-shell crab chili.
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Andrew Zimmer is Thrillist’s NYC Editor, and he never lets his beach-going interfere with his restaurant-going. If at all possible, he does them both at the same time. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
1. Choza Taqueria600 11th Ave, New York
2. ESH98 N 6th St, Brooklyn
3. élan43 East 20th St, New York
4. Ample Hills Creamery305 Nevins St, Brooklyn
5. Wilma Jean345 Smith St, Brooklyn
6. Cherry Izakaya138 N 8th St, Brooklyn
7. Crif Dogs West Village120 Macdougal St, New York
8. UFC - Unidentified Flying Chickens60 3rd Ave, New York
9. Luke's Lobster211 E 43rd St, New York
10. Grand BanksPier 25, New York
11. Humboldt & Jackson434 Humboldt St, Brooklyn
12. Pasar Malam208 Grand Street, Brooklyn
This Hell's Kitchen spot doles out excellent Mexican beachside-style eats including tacos, burritos, tostadas, and the somewhat rare, breakfast tacos.
ESH, which means “fire” in Hebrew, takes over the space formerly occupied by The Gorbals. The open kitchen's wood-fired grill turns out heavily spiced meats and vegetables that are the backbone to Chef Ilan Hall’s modern Israeli BBQ menu. Warmer weather offers the option of enjoying the full menu at the rooftop bar, which pairs perfectly with a boozy slushie and a Brooklyn Sunset.
This David Waltuck spot in Gramercy dishes out contemporary cuisine like grilled seafood sausage, sea urchin guacamole, stuffed chicken wings, General Tso’s sweetbreads, and fettuccine with scallops and duck fat.
The nationally famed ice creamery's Gowanus location boasts an insane outdoor roof deck to eat your unique ice cream flavors on. Choose from your choice of cone (pretzel, anyone?!) and move onto flavors like beer-infused chocolate.
Armed with Southern hospitality, Wilma Jean in Gowanus serves up stackable portions of double cheeseburgers, fried bologna sandwiches, fried pickles, and its signature fried chicken, the latter of which is served atop a potato bun, on a stick, and in half-portions. Run by a husband and wife duo, the counter-service spot is a solid option for brunch, happy hour (its daily beer and wine deals are an added bonus), or for a late dinner, with the kitchen open until 10pm seven days a week.
Cherry Izakaya is a dual-level contemporary Japanese eatery near the Bedford L stop in Williamsburg with tempting eats like Suntory-glazed short ribs, chorizo-stuffed calamari, and traditional and unusual sushi dishes.
Everyone's favorite late-night hot doggery finds itself in the West Village, so you can grab any of their roughly 4,000 varieties of dogs, plus fries, shakes, beer, and more without having to travel across the island.
Previously only out in Jackson Heights, this Korean Fried chicken spot has landed in the East Village, and it brought it’s juicy/crispy fried chicken along with some other options like a pork bulgogi burger too.
Luke is bringing the lobster roll madness to Midtown East, plus this location has outdoor seating in a small park for picnicking and happy hour. You know you want lobster rolls.
This seasonal oyster bar perched atop a historic fishing boat at Pier 25 serves an incredible selection of soft-shell crabs, lobster rolls, and of course, lots of oysters. It's best to make a reservation for dining, but you can easily snag a seat at one of the two on-deck bars if you're there for drinks. Refreshing nautical cocktails, wine, Champagne, and craft beer round out the drink menu. Grand Banks is open from May to October.
This Williamsburg spot comes with a rotating roster of chefs from places like Brooklyn Brewery, Best Pizza, and OTB. They’ll each come on different nights and hook diners up with creative menus featuring everything from beer cheese to pork belly cracklins and root beer floats.
This Malaysian spot in Williamsburg is overflowing with extremely innovative eats. Head in for the s'mores roti, Ais, soft-shell crab ragu, and a drink called the Michael Jackson. Get it all.