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Restaurants Perfect For People Watching

our suggestions

  1. Estela NYC
    7.9

    Estela

    47 E Houston St., Nolita, NY 10012

    It’s no secret that we weren’t into Chef Ignacio Mattos’ last run behind the burners at Taavo Somer’s confusing experiment, Isa. Beautiful space, but food that seemed more about the concept than the taste for our liking. Now armed with a new clique including the former wine director from Blue Hill Stone Barns and his […]

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  2. Barrio Chino
    7.8

    Barrio Chino

    253 Broome St., Lower East Side, NY 10002

    A little expensive and extremely cramped, but Barrio Chino is worth the wait.

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  3. Dassara
    7.8

    Dassara

    271 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231

    The bar in this city when it comes to ramen has been set very high. We’ve got more quality noodle joints here in New York than pretty much anywhere other than Tokyo. OK, maybe that’s giving ourselves too much credit, but we have a hard time believing that you can find better bowls than Totto […]

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  4. Angelica Kitchen
    7.8

    Angelica Kitchen

    300 E. 12th St., East Village, NY 10003

    We get scolded a lot for not having enough strictly vegetarian restaurants reviewed on Immaculate Infatuation. The problem is, most of them just aren’t that good and smell like un-showered human. We’re in the business of delivering the goods on our recommendations, not sending people dumpster diving. When we’re looking to impress our ambitious plant […]

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  5. Minetta Tavern
    7.7

    Minetta Tavern

    113 MacDougal St., Greenwich Village, NY 10012

    So much hype. We like Minetta Tavern, but come on…everyone needs to chill out. Plus, we don’t approve of restaurants with bouncers.

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  6. Los Feliz
    7.6

    Los Feliz

    109 Ludlow St., Lower East Side, NY 10002

    La Esquina for the common folk, where the vibe and the drinks are the stars but with stellar food to boot. This cozy taqueria upstairs opens up into a raucous fiesta downstairs.

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  7. La Fonda Nolita
    7.6

    Tacombi @ Fonda Nolita

    267 Elizabeth St., Nolita, NY 10012

    Tacombi is the name for the converted VW bus that serves the tacos. Fonda Nolita is the name for the space (we think). Put the two together and you have an interesting interpretation of what street food looks like on a really expensive street. We don’t usually pay much attention to online chatter, but even […]

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  8. Rosemary's
    7.6

    Rosemary’s

    18 Greenwich Ave, West Village, NY 10011

    I think we can all agree that this whole urban farmhouse thing is getting a bit played out. While the rooftop garden movement is all cute and cuddly, it rarely results in a restaurant with more to show for itself than “we grow our own vegetables and herbs on the roof.” After bad experiences in […]

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  9. L'Apicio
    7.6

    L’Apicio

    13 E. 1st St., East Village, NY 10003

    When Epicurean Management, the team behind Infatuation favorites L’Artusi and dell’anima, open a new restaurant, we feel the need to get there both immediately and often. Their last restaurant, Ellabess, didn’t do so well and already closed. Probably because they went without an apostrophe. Good to see they’re learning from past mistakes. L’Apicio has been […]

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  10. 2LilFrankies
    7.5

    Lil’ Frankies

    19 1st Ave., East Village, NY 10003

    This one has been a long time coming. Show of hands. Who out there has not been to Lil’ Frankies? No one. That’s what I thought. If you’re a resident of downtown Manhattan, you’ve most likely enjoyed a meal at Frankies at some point over the last decade. The youngest child of the Frank restaurant […]

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