My Favorite NYC Restaurants of 2018
I can’t believe 2018 is coming to a close. I know people say this every year, but this year actually FLEW by. So much work completed, memories made, and food consumed by yours truly. I am closing out the year with a roundup of restaurants I tried and loved! Starting from the bottom of Manhattan and working my way up:
Toro Loco - 15 Stone St, New York, NY 10004
This place is good for chill drinks and salsa at the bar or for when you’re craving a vat of nachos and guacamole. The serving sizes are huge and the bar gets pretty lively at times (especially Sunday brunch).
Lower East Side
Davelle - 102 Suffolk St, New York, NY 10002
Davelle looks like a hole in the wall, with very limited seating, but the food is on point. Especially their Japanese milk bread toasts!
Brigitte - 37 Canal St, New York, NY 10002
Upscale French with delicious (and filling) sweet potato gnocchi in a rustic and romantic space.
Divya’s Kitchen - 25 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10003
We loved this spot! The space is cute for a Friday night dinner with your girls and the food was so warming and comforting. The menu was all vegetarian (with a lot of gluten-free options too) and they follow Ayurvedic principles in their cooking, using nutritious ingredients to heal your body.
Au Za’atar - 188 Avenue A, New York, NY 10009
The Middle-Eastern menu is packed with flavor and the table side shawarma makes it a fun spot for an interactive date or birthday dinner.
Dez - 227 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012
Another Middle-Eastern inspired menu but this spot is more for the fast-casual vibe. They have awesome meze options, build your own bowls, fresh pita and soft swerve flavors of the month (the tahini one was so good).
Sola Pasta Bar - 330 W Broadway, New York, NY 10013
Picture Italian chefs cooking homemade pasta in front of you while you’re sipping on wine during date night.
Woo SoHo - 206 Spring St, New York, NY 10012
Upscale Korean BBQ spot where the flavors are on point and you get to cook your own meat on an individual grill at every table. Another good spot for interactive dates or birthday dinners.
Shuka - 38 Macdougal St, New York, NY 10012
Tasty Mediterranean food (and some of the best halloumi cheese I’ve ever had) in a fun and spacious atmosphere.
West Bourne - 137 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012
The vibe at this cafe is very LA with grain bowls and trendy decor. The food is healthy and delicious. I’d say this is a good spot to take your mom to lunch or to post up with your laptop and a green tea.
Loring Place - 21 W 8th St, New York, NY 10011
Loved this place! The menu was really creative and the dishes we’re so tasty. Schedule your next birthday brunch or dinner date night here.
Villanelle - 15 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003
Villanelle is cool because their ingredients are inspired and sourced from the farmers market. The dishes are light and fresh and the space is very modern and chic.
Via Carota - 51 Grove St, New York, NY 10014
Cozy spot serving classic Italian dishes in a romantic date-night setting.
The Wild Son - 53 Little W 12th St, New York, NY 10014
Casual little gastropub good for everything from sandwiches, to pancakes to steak and veggies.
Hao Noodle - 343 W 14th St, New York, NY 10014
They also have a location in the West Village but we went to the Chelsea one and loved it. The atmosphere is a lot nicer than it may appear to be online and the dishes we’re thoughtful and authentic to Chinese cooking. Great for date night or dinner with friends before going out in the village.
Lamano - 265 W 20th St, New York, NY 10011
Little Spanish tapas wine bar with tasty bites and a large selection of wines. Definitely a date spot if you want to eat light and get your buzz on.
Scampi - 30 W 18th St, New York, NY 10011
Another classic but chic Italian food spot with tasty mafaldine pasta.
NONONO - 118 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10016
We only really tried the lunch menu here, but their dinner menu seems to have even more exciting options. That being said, the noodles and chicken meatballs from the lunch menu we’re great. As for atmosphere, it’s pretty casual but could be dressed up a bit if you wanted to go out for date night here.
ILILI - 236 5th Ave, New York, NY 10001
Last but DEFINITELY not least! We really enjoyed this place! The menu is mostly Lebanese inspired and the dishes we tasted we’re awesome. The space is pretty upscale and great for a special occasion too.