Great food, cocktails and coffee at any price in Manhattan
Experience a true taste of New York City with picks from both local foodies & the curated list of Capital One Dining restaurants.
May 3, 2022 8 min read
When you think about the world’s great food cities, Paris and Rome leap to mind. So do Barcelona, Bangkok and Bologna. Of course, no list is complete without New York City—especially Manhattan. If you’re looking for amazing places to grab food, cocktails and coffee in the heart of the city, you’ve come to the right place.
You’ll see picks from New York insiders who’ve got favorite spots that most tourists may not know about. Plus, you’ll see recommendations from the stellar list of Capital One Dining restaurants curated by industry experts including chef José Andrés. Eligible rewards cardholders can book hard-to-get tables with Capital One Dining in New York City—and other select cities, too.
Great lunch or dinner in Manhattan
What makes the New York dining scene so special? For starters, it's a culinary melting pot.
As Travel + Leisure magazine recently noted, “So many people living in New York City are originally from somewhere else, and they’ve brought their dishes with them … as well as the creativity and ingenuity that make the NYC food scene so vibrant.”
In the mood for authentic Mexican food? Maybe Indian or French? Manhattan is filled with globally inspired lunch-and-dinner spots that can satisfy most any craving.
New Yorkers’ picks
First up for recommendations from local New York foodies: lunch and dinner options.
“Dependably delish.” That’s how magazine executive Jeanine Triolo describes Brick Lane Curry House in the East Village. The simple British-Indian eatery serves classic dishes like chicken tikka and daal makhani from its digs on Second Avenue.
Tacombi, with its intentionally low-fi charm, is another of Triolo’s picks. What started in 2010 as a single taqueria in a former car garage has become, she says, “a taco empire.” Multiple Tacombi locations dot the city, including one in the East Village and another—Triolo’s personal choice—in the West Village.
For great food and a hot vibe, product strategy consultant Annie Cavlov recommends Dirty French. Based out of the funky-chic Ludlow Hotel on the Lower East Side, the bistro explores—and updates—traditional French flavors in dishes like steak au poivre and mussels etouffée.
Capital One Dining picks
Interested in exploring the city’s vegan scene? Eligible cardholders have access to reservations at Cadence, one of the stellar restaurants in the Capital One Dining portfolio. This plant-based restaurant brings Southern soul with an emphasis on sustainable vegan fare to Manhattan’s East Village.
Or hop on over to Hancock St. for a decadent dinner in Greenwich Village. Chef Ryan Schmidtberger cooks up New American fare with a bistro-inspired menu including raw bar items, homemade sourdough bread and signature dishes like squid ink linguine.
Great drinks in Manhattan
When evening falls, you can practically hear the ice tinkling in cocktail glasses across Manhattan. The city is brimming with great places—cozy neighborhood hideaways to swanky piano bars—to raise a glass. Cheers!
New Yorkers’ picks
Speaking of great places for cocktails, Cavlov’s got a couple of go-to recommendations. One is the Up and Up, especially for late-night drinks. The neighborhood cocktail bar in Greenwich Village serves cocktails—shaken, stirred and beyond—with inspired names like Punk Rock Pegasus, Papa Loves Mambo and Ain’t No Snow. And don't miss the bar snacks, especially the Cheese Puffs and the Dried Fruit and Fancy Nuts.
Owl’s Tail, a self-styled “cocktail parlor and social eatery” on the Upper West Side, is another of Cavlov’s favorites. She mentions its friendly staff, delicious bar food, downtown vibe—and, of course, its drinks menu: “The cocktails are amazing.”
Ad exec Fiona Connel likes to frequent LodiNYC, a neighborhood restaurant and bakery in Midtown. “It’s a gorgeous taste of Italy right in Rockefeller Center near NBC Studios,” she says. In particular, she calls out its Prosecco, antipasti and “polished brass fabulousness.”
Capital One Dining picks
When it’s time for cocktails, consider experiencing joie de vivre at Fig and Olive—there’s one in Midtown East on Fifth Avenue and another in the heart of the Meatpacking District. Celebrating French Riviera cuisine and culture, Fig and Olive focuses on quality ingredients, fresh flavors and a relaxed atmosphere. Start with a signature cocktail from the downstairs bar before heading upstairs for a delicious meal.
232 Bleecker is another great place for drinks, thanks to its curated wine list focused on smaller farmers and producers. This neighborhood restaurant in the West Village highlights a deep connection to local producers and has its own farm, Dig Acres, in upstate New York. Vegetable-forward dishes and a wood-fired hearth take center stage, with the menu rounded out with homemade pastas, hearth-fired chicken, and fish.
Great coffee in Manhattan
If you’re looking for coffee in any of its nearly infinite varieties, Manhattan’s got it all. There’s everything from diners pouring endless cups of joe to earthy cafes brewing caffeinated drinks with a global focus.
New Yorkers’ picks
Where do the New York insiders recommend grabbing morning coffee when you’re hungry and sleepy? For software engineer Kiernan Hahn, it’s Landmark Coffee Shop in Little Italy. “It feels like something preserved from a different era of the city,” he says. So enjoy the throwback atmosphere, order a big plate of pancakes and greet the day with copious amounts of hot coffee.
The Jolly Goat coffee bar in Midtown is a frequent workday stop for Connel. “It does a mean cortado, hot or iced, made with love by the Turkish owner,” she says. “Always a smile and nice conversation to take a pause in a super-busy day.”
Cavlov is a fan of Black Press Coffee. From its Upper West Side location, the specialty coffee shop sells everything from simple drip coffee to red eye in a minimalist space that offers—in its own words—”awesome coffee and cool vibes.”
Capital One Dining picks
Here’s one way to be sure you’ll get a great cup of coffee: Pick an all-day breakfast place where it never stops flowing.
The Spanish Diner at Mercado Little Spain features Spanish comfort food—including all-day breakfast—in an open-air outdoor space set under the High Line in Hudson Yards. Chef José Andrés’s menu is quintessentially Spanish, with recipes that are found at home and shared around the kitchen table with family and friends, generation after generation.
And then there’s Lafayette Grand Café & Bakery in the NoHo district. To have a meal there is to take a trip from Normandy to Provence to the neighboring Mediterranean coasts, without leaving downtown Manhattan. At Lafayette, executive chef John Ramirez’s market-driven bistro menu highlights traditional and modern French dinner dishes and pastries—plus La Colombe drip coffee, nitro oat latte, café latte and more.
Learn more about Capital One Dining
If the Capital One Dining recommendations caught your eye—and of course they did—there's good reason. The restaurant selections were curated with extraordinary partners, including celebrated chef José Andrés, the MICHELIN Guide and the James Beard Foundation.
And with Capital One Dining, eligible rewards cardholders have insider access to hard-to-get tables at restaurants in select cities—New York City included. Plus other unforgettable culinary experiences.
With Capital One Dining, eligible cardholders can:
- Learn about new restaurants. Get restaurant recommendations from Capital One’s industry dining partners and check out accolades from the MICHELIN Guide and James Beard Foundation.
- Book a table. Reserve a table using the Capital One Mobile app on your phone, desktop or tablet. You’ll get email notifications about key milestones—like when your reservation is confirmed or changed. Plus, you’ll get reminders about your upcoming reservations.
- Personalize your dining profile. Build your profile with details like dietary preferences and special notes. They’ll be sent automatically to restaurants when you make reservations.
Bring your appetite for good times and great food
Now that you’ve read about some of the hottest restaurants in Manhattan, what’s next? Maybe it’s time to plan a trip and visit them yourself.
And, if you’re an eligible Capital One cardholder, book your plans through Capital One Travel. Pack your bags. And by all means, bring your appetite for good times and great food.