Where to Get Latkes in NYC Just in Time for Hanukkah
From historic delicatessens to restaurants with special menus, these spots have you covered for the holiday.
New York City has a long and proud history of Jewish food makers and lovers. Bagels, challah, babka, lox, and latkes have become ingrained in the city’s food map, with devoted fans from across cultures. And with Hanukkah coming up from December 18–26, it’s time to indulge in some potato pancakes fried until golden.
While plenty of restaurants and delis across the city serve latkes all year long, some roll out specials just in time for the holiday. From traditional takes at classics like Katz’s and Russ & Daughters to unexpected interpretations at others, you’re sure to find some you’ll love on this list. Here’s our favorite restaurants in NYC serving latkes for Hanukkah this year.
At some point during the eight nights of Hanukkah, be sure to pencil in some time at Balaboosta. The Middle Eastern restaurant will be serving latkes throughout the holiday, so you can get your fill alongside dishes like Yeminite Soup Dumplings, Fried Olives with Homemade Labneh, and Tahdig Rice. Chef Einat Admony’s latkes are made with quinoa and Jerusalem artichoke, and you can finish off your meal with another holiday special: Sfinge Donuts.
Just in time for the holiday, two local Israeli restaurants are teaming up for a fun twist on the classic latke. Inspired by the sandwiches at Sherry Herring, a Tel Aviv institution that opened a Manhattan location earlier this year, the holiday provision will come garnished with three sets of toppings: sour cream, onion, scallions, and chili; smoked tuna with mayonnaise, chipotle paste, and harissa flakes; or white fish salad with house vegetables, a drizzle of lemon and olive oil, and chives. The special menu item will be available at both locations of 12 Chairs, as well as at Sherry Herring.
To taste the holiday collaboration between 12 Chairs and Sherry Herring, you can also head to the Upper West Side. This popular sandwich shop first gained a following in Tel Aviv before opening its first US outpost on the Upper West Side earlier this year, so picking up an order of latkes is a great excuse to check it out. Sherry Herring’s new outpost will offer the same three latke varieties as 12 Chairs—but this version will be kosher like the rest of the deli’s sandwiches and provisions.
Named for chef Jeremy Salamon’s grandmother, Agi’s Counter is the perfect spot to pick up Hanukkah treats for the whole family. The breakfast, lunch, and pastry shop is focused on Jewish and Eastern European cuisine and will offer latkes all month long. The potato pancakes come with the classic accompaniments of applesauce and sour cream, but you can upgrade your order with trout roe or white anchovies for an additional fee.
Founded in 1908, this timeless restaurant’s latkes were once an off-menu item only whispered about by those in the know. But Barney Greengrass has shifted its latkes to center stage. Nicknamed the “The Sturgeon King,” the spot has been serving latkes with a smooth interior and golden and crispy outside for more than a century now, so stop by for six packs with sour cream and applesauce—you’ll be surrounded by those honoring decades-long traditions and others starting their own.
Just as the name suggests, bagels are the star of this show. But after starting off your morning with a bagel and shmear from chef and owner Bari Musacchio, make sure you return for her latkes. Baz Bagel has two options: a classic recipe, dubbed Joyce’s Famous Latkes after Musaccho’s grandmother, and a version called the Fancy Pants, which comes dressed up with sour cream, smoked salmon, chives, and salmon roe caviar.
This quintessential NYC bakery is known for its Chocolate Babka, challah, and other Jewish baked treats. So it comes as no surprise that Breads Bakery’s holiday menu is stocked with several must-order dishes. Latkes are available in packages of one, five, or 12 alongside sour cream and applesauce. And because we’re all deserving of a sweet end to the year, add on some Sufganiyot available in flavors like passionfruit, vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate.
The Grated Potato Latkes at this Levantine-influenced restaurant may be traditional, but the topping selections are out-of-the-box. Stay somewhat classic for choices like horseradish yogurt, smoked salmon, and applesauce with ginger and Israeli date syrup. Or throw tradition aside in favor of harissa barbecue sauce or short rib ragu—and to splurge, there’s the American paddlefish caviar for an extra $30.
After quickly expanding from a bagel pop-up to a sandwich shop and full-service restaurant,
Edith’s has become a pillar of Jewish deli-style dishes in Williamsburg. The shop is most well-known for a bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich with a crispy latke inside, but individual square-shaped latkes are available all year round and can be preordered for nights one and two of Hanukkah. The latkes come in orders of six or 12, with dipping options ranging from classic creme fraiche and apple butter to buffalo, harissa ketchup, and other out-of-the-box toppings. Additionally, the shop teamed up with Greenpoint bakery Peter Pan Donuts for a special Concord Grape Jelly Sufganiyot, so be sure to tack on a donut or two.
An institution on the Lower East Side since 1888, Katz’s is currently the oldest Jewish deli in New York City, and in addition to its iconic Katz’s Pastrami sandwich, the restaurant serves steller latkes. To enjoy them, you can visit the eatery in person any day of the year, order takeout and delivery around the city, or ship them nationwide via the Hanukkah Dinner Package to extended family that you aren’t able to spend the holiday with.
Mile End Delicatessen
Mile End Delicatessen is a local favorite for Montreal-style bagels and all the classic fixings you’d expect from a Jewish deli. Traditional latkes with sour cream and applesauce are available for pick up and delivery (just be sure to preorder!) and you can also enjoy an order onsite at the restaurant. To mix things up a bit, try a latke on your bagel sandwich or go for an over-the-top Mont Royal with latkes, smoked salmon, sour cream, and tobiko caviar.
PJ Bernstein has been serving deli sandwiches, matzo ball soup, and smoked fish since 1965 to the likes of Lucille Ball, Liza Minnelli, and more (whose photos all line the walls), plus plenty of neighborhood regulars. Latkes have a place on the robust menu all year long and classic potato latkes are served with sour cream and applesauce. For something different, order the Lucky Latke, which comes with brisket or pastrami sandwiched between two crunchy latkes.
Russ & Daughters
You can’t discuss NYC Jewish delis and appetizing spots without including Russ & Daughters, the iconic shop that’s been on the Lower East Side since 1914. The smoked and cured fish are renowned, but come Hanukkah, latkes are what the masses seek. Sold as singles or in packs of five or 12, you can nab them at the original E. Houston Street location, the Orchard Street cafe, or the Brooklyn Navy Yard outpost.
When native New Yorker Peter Shelsky opened his Brooklyn bagel shop in 2011, it became an instant classic. Now, a decade later, its loyal neighborhood following will come out in droves for the shop’s golden fried latkes. Shelsky’s offers traditional and gluten-free potato latkes, as well as a sweet potato and celery root variety—because, you know, in this town, we’re all about having options. Order the crispy pancakes by the dozen, and don’t forget to tack on a tub of horseradish creme fraiche or Grandma Yetta’s chunky applesauce.
This beloved Ukrainian diner serves crispy fried latkes all year round—and it is perhaps best known for offering them during after-dinner hours. But come Hanukkah, Veselka significantly ramps up its frying production to satisfy the masses. Whether you head into the restaurant or pick up an order of the oversized potato pancakes to take home, you’d be remiss not to order some borscht or the shop’s famous pierogi as a supplement.