Episode 1: "Plan B"
This is the first instance of the trendy Bond St spot on Master of None, and a totally unsurprising one -- Ansari is known to frequent it. In the second scene of the first episode, Dev catches up with his friends over coffee here (sadly, no manouri cheese & fig sandwiches in sight), telling them how the condom he was using the previous night broke, but he and the girl he'd gone home with got Plan B, "So now, two people who barely know each other won’t be raising a human child together. That’s dope.”
Dev agrees to babysit his friends' kids, and after playing in the park for a while, asks them if they want to go get ice cream. He suggests a new gelato place, but the kids shout for 16 Handles. Dev rightfully informs the children that frozen yogurt is “ice cream for losers,” but agrees to take them anyway -- to the chain’s Astoria location -- where the kids proceed to yell out the other customers' ethnicities, and only want the vanilla flavor (of all the handles!). Ice cream for losers, indeed.
No one actually goes to Torrisi and Carbone’s casual Italian-American eatery, but they do take out sandwiches to eat back at the house. However, the kids Dev is babysitting also make sandwiches... with peanut butter, lettuce, and ketchup. Dev has a hilarious moment of contemplation between the two, but then ultimately says, “I gotta be honest, that looks pretty disgusting, I’m gonna eat this one,” motioning to the Parm sandwiches. Naturally, plenty of Ansari's famous “mmmm”s ensue.
Episode 2: "Parents"
Dev’s Wi-Fi is shitty, so he takes a video chat audition for an action movie at the Bowery and Bleecker location of Think Coffee. He’s very quickly asked to leave after standing up to do his audition, which includes shouting, “Everyone get the fuck out of here now!” Everyone glares, as they would.
“Parents” is perhaps the season’s best episode (though, really, it’s hard to choose), the theme being that Dev and his friend Brian realize they know so little about their parents’ immigrant experiences. They decide to take their parents out to dinner, to hear more about what their early lives were like, and the classic Shun Lee Palace in Midtown East is the chosen locale. Dev’s dad (played by Ansari’s own father) requests chicken and broccoli, and Brian’s father tells the waiter in Chinese, to “please bring the good dishes you only serve to Chinese people.”
Episode 3: "Hot Ticket"
Dev grabs drinks with his friends at this cozy Williamsburg cocktail spot (from the owners of Union Pool) and tells them he has tickets to a secret Father John Misty show. While it’s not clear what they’re drinking, the bar, which is decked out with black leather booths and old hardwood floors, features a number of well-crafted, upscale cocktails like the Northern Spy, with cachaça, pommeau, orange cardamom syrup, and lemon, shaken and served on the rocks.
And it’s back to The Smile for more coffee and discussion of Dev’s lady woes. Still no manouri cheese & fig sandwiches, but there is this flawless advice, given by Dev’s friend Arnold, on what to text a girl when she’s not answering: “You send her a picture of a turtle climbing out of a briefcase, then quickly write, 'Whoops, sorry, wrong person.’ You’ll get an instant response back from her, it’s mysterious. And girls love mystery.”
Dev ends up taking a server from Hotel Delmano to the secret Father John Misty show at this South Williamsburg bar/restaurant/concert venue, which is exactly where we’d expect a secret Father John Misty show to be. She ends up being a Cartman-impression-obsessed jacket thief, but at least the concert seems fun?!
In the wake of his horrible date with the Cartman impersonator, Dev meets his friend Denise at this cool Greenpoint cocktail bar, which is about a 10-minute Uber ride away. They sit at the U-shaped bar, and Dev drinks a Negroni while telling Denise about how he ran into Rachel, the girl he gets Plan B with in Episode 1, at Baby’s All Right, and is wondering whether or not to go meet up with her at the concert’s afterparty at Achilles Heel, just down the street.
After finally deciding to go meet Rachel, Dev shows up at Achilles Heel, and proclaims, “Wow, so many hip people here.” They dance to what Dev refers to as “the most amazing song that’s ever been created," Mark Morrison’s "Return of the Mack," which is just a fact.
Episode 4: "Indians on TV"
The very pretty Marlow & Sons in South Williamsburg features pretty prominently in Master of None. First, Dev gets coffee with his friend Ravi at the all-encompassing grocery/restaurant/bar/cafe. The cafe section, featured in this scene, is super cozy, lined with book shelves filled with books, T-shirts, and French presses. Later in the episode, Dev eats in the back room with Denise and Brian.
Episode 5: "The Other Man"
Lower East Side
Dev finally gets real ice cream at this popular LES parlor, known for its creative flavors. The special that day is the King Kong Banana Split (ice cream, bananas, and pineapple with sesame caramel and Luxardo). This is actually on the menu (for a whopping $20, though MON knocked it down to a more palatable $8).
Lower East Side
Aziz loves his Torrisi/Carbone spots! Dirty French on the LES (which we named one of 2014’s best restaurants) gets multiple name-checks throughout Master of None (Dev specifically calls out the chicken & crepes). In this episode, he takes a date there -- whom he later realizes only goes out with people to get free dinners. Which is a pretty brilliant/horrible thing to do.
Dev's back in the back room of Marlow & Sons (this time, the opposite side of the room), having drinks with Denise when Colin Salmon Facetimes him asking him to come over for something "urgent." And really, it is.
Episode 6: "Nashville"
Lower East Side
Danny Bowien’s still-buzzy Mission Chinese Food is known for its eclectic menu, but soon it'll be known as the home of one of Master of None’s best scenes, in which Dev and Arnold debate the logistics of “Lose Yourself” and 8 Mile -- “It is a movie, and Mekhi Phifer’s there!” “That’s where you’re wrong, he’s writing it from the perspective of Eminem in real life.” “No, no, no. He says, ‘Mom’s spaghetti.’ That’s the movie. He has a spaghetti stain on his shirt before the battle at The Shelter...” Someone should really write a dissertation on this.
Before jetting off for their date in Nashville (where some very good eating is done as well), Dev and Rachel grab coffee at Parlor Coffee, in the back of this Williamsburg barbershop. Haircuts should always be supplemented by caffeinated beverages.
Our beloved Hometown BBQ is the set for "Tickler's" in Nashville, home of that signature white BBQ sauce that Dev goes crazy for. Yes, those are Hometown's trays (though it doesn't look exactly like its ribs or cornbread), and reader Martin Raphael Fernandez Mata swears he recognizes the guy cutting meat in the background. Hometown doesn't have white BBQ sauce, but its sauce is worth obsessing over just the same.
Episode 7: "Ladies and Gentlemen"
Lower East Side
Charles Hanson’s 169 Soul Jazz Oyster Bar, aka that edge-of-Chinatown dive with disco balls, a leopard-print pool table, and dumplings 'til 4am, plays an important role in “Ladies and Gentlemen,” as Master of None shows the difference between a guys' and a girls' night out. Dev and his friends complain about not being able to get a drink, while Dev’s female co-star is repeatedly harassed (and subsequently followed home) by a creepy dude who wants to buy her a drink.
This popular Williamsburg bar/restaurant known for its fried chicken and burgers is the setting for a lunch with Dev and his friends. They've definitely got burgers on the table, but did anyone order the fried chicken?! Big mistake if not.
This East Village dive with skee-ball, pool, and darts is shown in two separate scenes in which Dev goes out drinking with his commercial co-stars. At the wrap party, he and his friends sit in one of the dive’s old leather booths. Dev’s got a Negroni in hand (are we sensing a favorite drink of Ansari’s?), which may be the only unrealistic thing that happens in this show. People at Ace Bar do not drink Negronis.
Episode 8: "Old People"
Dev breaks Rachel’s grandmother Carol out of her retirement home when she begs to go to this classic red-sauce Italian joint in Williamsburg. There’s probably no better television than watching Aziz Ansari make his “oh my God, this is delicious” face while eating several pasta dishes.
Episode 9: "Mornings"
Sunny's in Red Hook (one of our 50 Bars You Need to Drink in Before You Die) makes a very brief appearance in "Mornings," as the setting for a flashback to the night that Dev and Rachel first met. The two bond over their mutual love for The Buzzcocks.
Episode 10: "Finale"
After Dev and Arnold decide they want tacos for lunch, Dev begins his quest to find the absolute best -- featuring a text to a friend reading “Where da tasty tacos at?” and a cameo from yours truly. He ultimately decides on the Tacos Morelos truck in Williamsburg, except... it's out. Which is really too bad, as it does have those “tasty tacos."
Lower East Side
Sitting in the window of this LES coffee shop, Dev expresses his anxieties about his relationship, and life in general, to his dad. Coffee’s all they get, but the ultra-tiny El Rey also has a number of eats (most of them are on the healthy side), as well as wine and craft beer.
The Jane is the scene of Dev's movie premiere afterparty, which doesn’t surprise us in the least. We won’t spoil it, but the ballroom, in all its grandeur, is the scene of one of Dev and Rachel’s pivotal relationship moments (and apparently, several shots).
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Lucy Meilus is Thrillist’s New York editor and would name her first born Charlemagne to eat tacos with Aziz Ansari. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
1. The Smile26 Bond St, New York
2. Sixteen Handles37-07 30th Ave, Queens
3. Parm248 Mulberry St, New York
4. Think Coffee1 Bleecker St, New York
5. Shun Lee Palace155 E 55th St, New York
6. Hotel Delmano128 N 9th St, Brooklyn
7. Baby's All Right146 Broadway, Brooklyn
8. Alameda195 Franklin St, Brooklyn
9. Achilles Heel180 West St, Brooklyn
10. Marlow & Sons81 Broadway, Brooklyn
11. Morgenstern's Finest Ice Cream2 Rivington St, New York
12. Dirty French180 Ludlow St, New York
13. Mission Chinese Food171 E Broadway, New York
14. Persons of Interest84 Havemeyer St, Brooklyn
15. Hometown Bar-B-Que454 Van Brunt St, Brooklyn
16. 169 Bar169 E Broadway, New York
17. Ace Bar531 E 5th St, New York
18. The Commodore366 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn
19. Bamonte's32 Withers St, Brooklyn
20. Sunny's Bar253 Conover St, Brooklyn
21. Tacos Morelos25 Ave A, New York
22. El Rey Coffee Bar100 Stanton St, New York
23. The Jane113 Jane St, New York
The entrance to this woodsy cafe might be subterranean and located on the perennially quiet Bond Street, but swing the door open any day and you'll be greeted with a full orchestra of relaxed conversation and polite clinking of vegetable-piled dishes. The Smile attracts a local and markedly fashionable crowd, and you'll find an all-day menu that caters to such high tea tastes with dishes like baguette French toast, house-made ricotta toast, and avocado-topped grain bowls. Breakfast and brunch are the restaurant's peak times, but the space's dim lighting and English cottage-like furniture emanates a sleepy, relaxed drawl into the evening hours.
The beloved yogurt chain's Astoria location is on 3rd avenue, and offers the same wide variety of flavors as the other locations.
This Italian-American restaurant from the Torrisi crew serves rich but simple veal, chicken, and eggplant parm, in sandwich or platter form. Parm's menu reads like a "best of" list of red sauce classics, featuring clams casino, mozzarella sticks, penne pomodoro, and of course, giant meatballs. The Nolita spot is small and cozy with a long bar in front and small tables in the back, but take-out is available if you'd rather eat your sauce-drenched hero in the privacy of your own living room...or cubicle.
The NoHo location of Think Coffee is located on Bleecker and Bowery, and offers the same delicious, strong coffee it's known for.
This classic upscale Chinese spot is known for have a great mix of traditional and Americanized Chinese dishes.
This cozy Williamsburg cocktail spot from the owners of Union Pool is decked out with black leather booths and old hardwood floors, and features a number of well-crafted, upscale cocktails like the Northern Spy, with cachaça, pommeau, orange cardamom syrup, and lemon, shaken and served on the rocks.
Baby’s All Right is a trendy, low-key haunt offering live music most nights, as well as gourmet bar fare, creative drinks & transforms once the sun comes up in time for weekend brunch. The weekday menu features Bangkok-inspired dishes, and the weekend menu is an American brunch, with an awesome bottomless special. This spot was also featured in Aziz Ansar’s “Master of None,” so you know it’s pretty damn cool.
Greenpoint's Alameda is a gorgeous cocktail bar with a number of carefully crafted drinks and bar bites.
The Marlow & Sons guy (also: Diner and Reynard) has done it again, this time in Greenpoint with this 8a-cocktail-pouring resto that's got breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They've got coffee, too, so you can cure that hangover first or sober up later.
An American joint in Williamsburg with a solid wine selection that you can pair with oysters, apps & cheeses, or more hearty dinner specials like duck leg or pork coppa.
This nine-seat ice cream parlor is a true parlor; you can order while sitting at six seats on the bar. Once you have ordered, the man behind the scoop will likely slide your way one of his unique "texture-driven small-batch" flavors like a salt & pepper pine nut or Brazilian bourbon topped with curiously created made-to-order whipped cream or even Fernet biscuits.
Located in the Lower East Side's Ludlow Hotel, this glam bistro from Major Food Group (Carbone, Sadelle's, Parm) plays with Moroccan and New Orleans elements to create next-level French cuisine. The menu features elaborate takes on classics with plates like duck a l'orange with ras el hanout and preserved oranges; lamb saddle with potato and cumin; and a cote de boeuf for two. Dirty French is where you go when you want to make dinner an all-night affair, especially when the evening starts with a drink at its Lobby Bar.
The New York outpost of Danny Bowien's buzzy Chinese restaurant had a shaky start in the city -- after opening on Orchard Street in 2012, the restaurant closed down due to landlord issues and relocated to East Broadway. The Lower East Side spot is a destination for trendy and original Chinese food, far different from what you'll find at the family-owned banquet halls in Chinatown. Some dishes are spicy Szechuan, but for the most part, the menu draws from all over China and just about everywhere else (there's pizza on the menu). Make sure you get the fried rice, it's unbelievable.
Persons of Interest is a cool Williamsburg barbershop with a coffee shop in the back -- because all haircuts should be supplemented by coffee.
Pitmaster Billy Durney's Red Hook restaurant is smoking authentic regional barbecue like Texas-style brisket and St. Louis-style ribs. The menu is inspired by Durney's New York childhood spent eating eating at the international food carts along Flatbush Avenue, so options like lamb belly bánh mì and Vietnamese hot wings make the cut as well.
Drenched in colored light and decked out in palm trees,169 Bar may read a tad tacky, but that’s because it is. It’s earned that right after being around since 1916 (when its original name was the “Bloody Bucket”). Striptease dancers perform on a tiny platform alongside worn red booths as a funloving crowd guzzles cheap beer, frozen cocktails, and oyster Bloody Mary shooters (yes, they have a raw bar, but expect to be served on paper plates). A leopard print billiards table lives in the small back room, just don’t be shy about asking patrons to move for that winning shot.
Ace Bar has been serving up cheap drinks to East Village locals since 1992 and is known for its laid-back atmosphere and excellent arcade game collection. The bar stretches two huge rooms and offers plenty of seating, as well as two pool tables, two dart boards, pinball, Big Buck Hunter, and Skee-Ball. It also has a special projection TV system for games and 12 beers on tap.
The Commodore is a Southern/tropical-themed dive bar in Williamsburg. Open late, hipsters flock to its incredible fried chicken sandwiches, burgers, biscuits, and seriously dope grilled cheese. Its cocktails are also top-notch: get the eponymous Commodore, which is a Pina Colada gone buck-wild with an extra shot of amaretto thrown in there for good measure.
Forgo the hipster stigma of Williamsburg eateries by heading to Bamonte's, a classic red sauce joint that serves as a time capsule in both product and presentation. The waiters are tuxedoed, the dining room tables are draped in white cloth, and the menu features every item you'd expect an Italian grandmother to make. The price point is reasonable, so stock your table with the classics in a space that's been around longer than most in this city.
A relic of Red Hook's pre-gentrification, working class days lives on in Sunny’s bar, even if beloved proprietor Antonio Balzano, aka Sunny, died in 2016. His family has owned and operated the dark hole-in-the-wall by the river since the late 1890s, when it was one of many bars and restaurants that catered to ship builders who worked nearby. The cash-only dive now draws a mix of neighborhood locals and migrating “authenticity seekers” for cheap beer and cover-free live music.
TM is the best late-night grub spot. Be sure to indulge in some crazy beef tongue (or get your more-inebriated friend to).
This LES coffee shop is brewing up some seriously unique flavors, strong drinks, and relaxing vibes.
The Jane offers something no New Yorker ever thought possible: thoughtful accommodations at a reasonable price. This hotel has a ship theme going on and it totally works, in addition to their awesome bar/lounge: The Jane Ballroom.