Good luck trying to get a reservation at the Little Owl in the West Village. This tiny neighborhoody restaurant has seating room for merely 30 people, and with a reputation of having the best pork chop and meatball sliders in town, the supply simply doesn’t meet demand. Located on the corner of a quiet downtown street, the Little Owl’s charming and intimate setting draws a steady crowd for brunch, lunch and dinner (even after its recent DOH violation). If you don’t give a hoot about being in tight quarters or waiting for a table, then this picturesque date spot is sure to turn heads.
Maialino is located in the Gramercy Park Hotel, but don’t be fooled by the swank surroundings – if you are looking for a truly elegant dining experience (like sister Danny Meyer restaurant, Eleven Madison Park), you won’t find one. This self-proclaimed Roman-style trattoria is warm and welcoming, with good food & good service as the main focal points.
There’s not a square foot to spare at this South Village/SoHo hotspot. The Dutch, which serves brunch, lunch, dinner and late-night bar snacks, keeps its three spacious dining rooms full & its crowds fresh. Since opening in Summer 2011, The Dutch has proven to be another successful venture by the team behind Locanda Verde and Burger & Barrel. Anyone into clever comfort food and a buzzing scene should have this downtown bar/restaurant on their to-do list.
From the exposed brick to the hand-painted writing on the wall, this petite tapas restaurant resembles a secret dining refuge you’d find on a side street in Spain. And if it weren’t for the buzz about Lady Gaga sightings, Caliu would be just that, except on Hudson Street in the West Village.
Beauty & Essex
Located in what appears to be an old-school pawn shop (complete with vintage goods in display counters and dolled up “sales girls” manning a register), this lower east side “see and be seen” restaurant come nightclub defines NYC hotspot.
When you step inside Beauty & Essex for the very first time, you might question whether you’ve gone through the right door. It’s not until you follow the bass-pumping sounds and walk through a narrow hallway that you’ll get an aha moment – when you’re submerged into the sea of New York’s young and fabulous, with some copycat Kardashian clans mixed in.
Snack Taverna’s menu may be all Greek to you, but it offers comforting classics that feature bold Middle Eastern and Mediterranean flavors. While the square footage of the dining room might be the equivalent of a studio apartment, the atmosphere of this West Village eatery makes you want to overeat and overstay your welcome.
The dark and cozy, yet chic décor of this West Village hole-in-the-wall is a perfect depiction of the food – comforting Greek classics with a modern taste. Snack Taverna’s warm and accommodating staff makes you feel at ease immediately upon entering.
Dine Under the Tuscan Sun right on 7th Avenue at Morandi, a West Village staple known best for its people-watching and lively atmosphere, with tasty Italian fare to boot.
Morandi is a buzzing indoor/outdoor trattoria with a rustic look and ambiance. The distressed wood and exposed brick interior makes you feel like you’re in the Italian countryside, not on 7th Avenue.
Getting better with age, or aging gracefully? Either way, Cesca remains a darling of the Upper West Side, serving consistently good food to be enjoyed in good company.
Cesca adds some style to a neighborhood not typically known for its trendy restaurants. The dining room’s dark wooden tables and iron chandeliers provide a chic, yet homey atmosphere. Its friendly, attentive service makes this upscale Italian restaurant a great spot to celebrate or simply spend time with family, friends and loved ones.
It’s fiesta time all the time at this bustling Latin restaurant, where Miami’s vices are an Upper West side virtue, especially on Sundays.
Samba music pulsating across the large, banquet hall-esque dining room combined with bright lights and high ceilings provide more of a fun, party atmosphere than a cozy, romantic setting.
Eat, Drink and Be Merry at this bustling West Village wine bar slash Italian Cantina, where small plates and vino are meant to be shared – and leave you with a satisfying buzz.
The newest addition from the folks at ‘inoteca, Corsino has the same rustic Italian cantina feel, but with a nouveau look and a splash of West Village charm.