Matt and I love the NYC food scene and are a bit of foodies in general, especially when we travel (a lot of research goes into planning out our meals)! Needless to say, we have a running list of restaurants right here in New York that we have been dying to try and have made it more of a priority now that we are on baby-watch and our nights are a bit more limited.
With traveling and leaving the city less in my third trimester, and a moving a little slower in general, we have braved the waits, used a few of our tips and tricks (always ask about bar seating) and tried some restaurants we’ve always waned to go to. It has been fun experiencing all the different cuisines and always wondering “will this be our final meal as a family of two?!”
So lets get into the list of places we have tried and highly recommend!…
Cote – High-end Korean BBQ restaurant that came highly recommended by one of my friends. Matt and I thought we would never get in, but we decided to head down to put our name in the second the restaurant opened on a Sunday (4pm) willing to eat right away or put our name on the list and then grab a drink/mocktail nearby on the roof of Eataly. The first seating at 4pm was already all booked up, but the hostess was able to give us a table at 5:30pm, which I believe was the second seating and worked out even better! We decided to do the Butcher’s Feast which (I believe ) is the most popular, just note that everyone at the table needs to agree on this option. We also added the wedge salad to start (a must). I am not a huge meat eater and oh my gosh the cuts of meat they served literally melted in your mouth. It also came with a TON of side dishes and was just an overall fun and delicious experience. A must try!
L’Artusi – Located in one of my favorite neighborhoods to walk around and explore, the West Village, this Italian spot is pretty affordable, but definitely tricky to get into without a crazy wait. Matt headed here directly from work on Friday and put our name in (around 6pm) and once again mentioned that we would be okay with bar seating to up our chances of getting in sooner. FYI, their bar seats have backs, which is a priority when this pregnant. We still had a bit of a wait, but grabbed a drink and snack nearby and then received a text that our table was ready. We sat at the chefs counter, which was fun being able to watch all of the action! 110% order some of the pasta dishes and go off of the wait staff’s recommendations. And you must end your meal with the olive oil cake! As popular as this spot was, Matt and I were actually surprised by the affordable prices (even with me not drinking).
Via Carota – Another Italian spot in the West Village we had been DYING to try. They don’t take reservations, so go as early as you can to put your name in because you will have a good wait regardless, but trust me it is worth it! Highlights from our meal were the grilled artichokes, cacio pepe (maybe the best in the city) and wild boar ragu. Also good chance you could see a celebrity sighting here – I just read that Adele and Jake Gyllenhaal shared a meal here. It really does seem to be everyone’s favorite neighborhood joint.
ATOBOY – Located in NoMad, this Korean-inspired family style cuisine is a bit adventurous, but packed with flavor and overall absolutely delicious. This was another spot Matt and I opted to sit at the bar so we could snag a table faster . We arrived right when they opened over the weekend, but still had to wait a little bit so grabbed a drink next door. Another perk of sitting at the bar here is that you aren’t restricted to the prix fixe menu, although we did one prix fixe meal (which includes 3 dishes of your choice and a side of rice) and added the fried chicken (served with a spicy peanut sauce…a MUST ORDER) and pork belly (wouldn’t recommend), and that was plenty for both of us.
Clinton Street Bakery – I am drooling just thinking about our recent meal here. We have attempted to get in for breakfast/brunch over the weekend countless times and the wait was just too insane, but thankfully for pregnancy I am up early these days and got Matt moving and we headed downtown to put our name on the list. We arrived around 8:30ish and still had a 40 minute wait, so walked around a bit, shot some photos, and then headed back when our table was ready. They will text you, so you can easily explore the area or go grab a good cup of coffee while waiting. By the time we came back to sit, the line was insane, just FYI! You must order the blueberry pancakes and we also loved the southern breakfast! Matt and I are big into splitting everything, so it is always fun to try a little bit of each.
Maialiano – Just go here and order and eat everything you possibly can haha. It is located in the Gramercy Park Hotel and you shouldn’t have too much of an issue with reservations. Matt and I were here once for a birthday dinner with friends and then recently I went back for lunch with my Mother-In-Law and Sister-In-Law and we literally rolled out of here. Go with a big appetite and make sure you order some of the pastas and burrata!
Uncle Boons – I saved the funkiest for last because after an initial glance of this menu I wasn’t sure I was on board (especially earlier on in my pregnancy when my tastebuds were a bit more selective). I am so glad we went back and gave it a go once all food aversions had passed because it was great! Same deal, we arrived right before it opened and there was still a line to get in. So we put our name on the waiting list, and grabbed a drink with friends nearby. I think about an hour and a half later we finally got seated. We took a lot of the waitresses recommendations, but a few stand outs were Yum Mamoung, Khao Soi Kaa Kai, Kao Pat Puu and the YUMMIEST desert: a coconut ice cream sundae.
Maxi Dress (Under $100, wearing size XS)