NYC Restaurant Week

Photo by Michael Browning on Unsplash

It’s that time of year again. It’s NYC Restaurant Week!

Twice a year, some of NYC’s most popular restaurants offer a specially priced menu: a 3-course meal for just $29 for lunch or $42 for dinner per person, plus beverages, tax and tip. It all started as a true week in 1992. NYC Restaurant Week has since expanded into a three-week opportunity to indulge in the finer things. This year’s dates are January 22 to February 9. With almost 400 restaurants participating, the options can be overwhelming. We’re always here to give you the rundown of our favorite spots. So, here are mine.


Photo by G. Crescoli on Unsplash

A few quick tips:

  • The great thing about the NYC Restaurant Week site is that you can search by type of cuisine and neighborhood to customize your search to your cravings.
  • If you’re like me, you might have a list of restaurants you’ve always wanted to try. See if any of those places are offering a Restaurant Week menu. Or ask your friends what places they have tried or have wanted to try.
  • If a place has multiple locations, confirm that the one you’re going to is offering the Restaurant Week menu; and when it is offered – some locations offer dinner only, while some offer on Sundays as well.
  • You can view the menu on the site to help with your decisions.
  • Make a reservation! I’d also recommend going earlier in the week to beat the crowd.
  • Try something new for at least one of the courses. This is the perfect opportunity for a culinary adventure.

Now that you’re equipped with the basics, here are my recommendations NYC’s 2018 Restaurant Week:

The Cecil (Dinner Only)
210 W 118th St., New York, NY 10026

Steakhouse, Harlem

Why I’m Recommending It: Because it’s in Harlem, duh! The Cecil recently reopened with a new swag. I’m curious about what they’re serving up these days.

What’s Calling My Name on the Menu: Ella & Louie Chicken. I can almost taste that white wine caper sauce and I want to know what it tastes like in real life.

Bonus: Other Uptown options include the ever popular Red Rooster or check out Sofrito on the Hudson.

Calle Ocho (Dinner Only)
45 W 8st St., New York, NY 10024

Cuban, Upper West Side

Why I’m Recommending It: Cuba has been such a popular destination. This is a great one for those who want a reminder of the food, the culture and the memories and also for those who haven’t gone and want to take their taste buds on a trip.

What’s Calling My Name on the Menu: Crema de Langosta (Lobster Biqsue)

Bonus: You may also want to indulge in Brazil’s Carnival season at Fogo de Chao Churrscaria Brazilian Steakhouse or experience Indian food and culture at Junoon or Tamarind.

The View
1535 Broadway, New York, NY 10036

American, Times Square

Why I’m Recommending It: Because it is one of those cool NYC experiences – a rotating restaurant on the 48th Floor of the Marriott Marquis right in the heart of Times Square. Whether you are new to the city or have lived here for years, it’s a way to view of the city from a different perspective. This experience will add two points to your NYC swag.

What’s Calling My Name on the Menu: Citrus Horseradish Cod with Creamy Parsley Risotto – which sounds like so many strong flavors that I can’t even imagine how they all come together. I feel like I have to try it to truly understand and appreciate it.

Bonus: You can have dinner where many of the Real Housewives reunions are filmed at the NYC classic Russian Tea Room.

La Loteria (brunch, lunch and dinner)
29 7th Ave S, New York, NY 10014

Latin American, West Village

Why I’m Recommending It: Because brunch is life!

What’s Calling My Name on the Menu: Tacos de Fideo (spaghetti tacos) with tomato jalapeno cumin paste, avocado, cotija cheese AND the Churros for dessert.

Bonus: Other brunch options include Vinateria and David Burke Kitchen.

Legasea (Lunch, Sunday dinner)
485 7th Ave, New York, NY 10018

Seafood, Midtown

Why I’m Recommending It: Because it’s new.

What’s Calling My Name on the Menu: Even though they don’t have their Restaurant Week menu online, their regular menu made my mouth water. I’d be willing to go sight unseen and call it a wildcard adventure.

Bonus: Other (relatively) new kids on the block: Megu and Vandal  

Honorable Mentions:

Some of the popular favorites: Dos Caminos, Rosa Mexicano

NYC trendy hotspots: ABC Cocina, Catch, TAO, Zengo, Nobu, Zuma

Steakhouses: Morton’s, Smith & Wollensky, Michael Jordan The Steakhouse, STK Downtown, Capital Grille

Share your pics! Tag us @foodbeforelove and use the hashtag #yumcam so we can repost them. Our #yumcam can also help you decide where to go!

Do you have a place you’ve tried and would recommend? What restaurants are on your list? Let us know in the comments below! 

NYC Restaurant week 2017 summer
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Since its inception in 1992, NYC Restaurant Week has now expanded to four weeks of a financially friendly opportunity to explore and try restaurants you may otherwise feel out of your reach. With 390 restaurants participating, the options can seem a bit overwhelming. If you have no idea where to go, we want to help you make your choice during these last days. Note: NYC Restaurant Week ends tomorrow, Friday, August 18th. So make your reservations now!

So “how does this work?” you may be askingDuring NYC Restaurant Week, you can indulge in a 3-course prix-fixe meal, which will cost you $29 for lunch and $42 dinner (plus the cost of beverages, tax and gratuity). This menu is offered Monday – Friday and on Sundays at some locations. You can find out which restaurants are participating and explore the menus they are offering here.

NYC Restaurant week 2017 summer

To give you a taste of what to expect and to help you narrow your options, here is what a few of our hungry friends had to say:

Danielle, @DaniDares (Food Before Love Insider)

Where to go:

The Clocktower (Flatiron) (lunch)

What to order:

Appetizer: Shellfish linguini, lemongrass, king crab, lobster bisque

Entree: 36 Hour braised Pork Belly, crispy polenta, roasted apricots, golden thyme

Dessert: Peach Eton mess, almond whipped cream, vanilla meringue

Beverage: Gruner Ventliner

Favorite details of the experience: The entire experience was decadent. The walls are adorned with images of classic icons. It felt as if we were in someone’s home that was hosting us for lunch or the perfect setting for a game of clue. The bisque was fulfilling yet not heavy, and the pork belly melted in my mouth with such a succulent flavor.


Name: Jessica, @Jessbcause721

Where to go:

Schilling Restaurant and Bar (FiDi) (lunch)

What to order:

Appetizer: Chicken liver crostini with shallot marmalade, house pickles and dijon

Entree: Branzino w/ a black garlic broth, root vegetable fricasse and charred broccoli florets

Dessert: Tiramisu

Beverage: Traditional Austrian beer Hefeweizen

Favorite details of the experience:

I absolutely loved the chicken liver crostini! It was super rich and the sweetness of the shallot marmalade just literally melted in your mouth. I would go back just to have that. I also loved that the broth with the branzino was spicy. The branzino was tender and flaky, there is so much you can do with fish so I enjoyed that they kept the broth light and flavorful and kept the branzino as the star.I would give the food a 4, that tiramisu was heaven in a shot glass.

Ambiance of the restaurant is very farm to table as the location is an industrial converted garage with wooded accents, glowing string lights and plush pillow lined benches.  The door was pulled all the way up so we had a nice floating breeze. I adore restaurants like this that kind of invite the hum of the city in while you dine. You can always feel connected to the world around you..

Great for dates or just catching up with friends. The waitstaff was extremely friendly and were more than accommodating when my boyfriend and I wanted to sample a few of the beers before deciding. Service is definitely a 5. All in all I would love to go back, as I said before its cozy, I had a great time and the food was AMAZING!

Tagliatelle alla Bolognese

Haley & Sarah, @twotastebuds_nyc

Where to go:

Sant Ambroeus (West Village)

What to order:

Appetizer: Battuta Di Manzo (Steak tartare)

Entree: Tagliatelle alla Bolognese

Dessert: Gelato & Sorbet

Beverage(s): Bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon “La Contessa” 2015

Favorite details of the experience: The tagliatelle alla Bolognese was one of the best pasta dishes I have had in NYC and our waitress let us have a wine tasting while deciding which we wanted!

Where have you gone for NYC Restaurant Week? Let us know all about it in the comments below or tag us @FoodBeforeLove on instagram!

NYC Restaurant Week Winter 2017

With such a great list of restaurants, it can get really tough trying to decide where to eat during NYC Restaurant Week. Luckily, you still have time to decide. The winter 2017 NYC Restaurant Week starts on January 23rd – February 10th and reservations are now open. The “week” over time, has turned into two weeks but who’s complaining? Getting a three course lunch for $29 and a three course dinner for $42 is every diners dream, especially at restaurants who normally have a higher price point. Many are also offering brunch as well.

The hard part is choosing where you want to go. With over 300 options, it can get overwhelming sifting through menus which all locations haven’t made public. So I compiled the Food Before Love picks of the season. Be sure to #YumCam us with the good eats you decide to indulge in.

NYC Restaurant Week Winter 2017
Photo courtesy of NYCGO


Tavern 62

I was curious about Tavern 62 because Chef Burke had yet to disappoint me in the past. He was raving about the restaurant on twitter and it’s time we find out for ourselves. After all, every one of his restaurants provides a different experience and this menu is serving a ton of options for all.

Type of restaurant: New American

Perfect for: A business lunch or long lunch with a co-worker

What you need to know: They recently opened on the Upper East Side and are participating in NYC Restaurant Week only for lunch on Monday-Friday 

Book Tavern

Toloache Entrana


When you have the opportunity to see a Wednesday Matinee and then go to lunch near by, you can’t really complain. That’s the experience Toloache gives you for NYC Restaurant week. Whether you’re on your way there or wanted to grab a bite after, this midtown location will become your go to.

Type of restaurant: Mexican

Perfect for: A great third date spot or place to bring a parent before you head over to see a show

What you need to know: The brussels sprouts are amazing. Seriously, they taste like bacon.

Book Now

Soccarat Paella at Soccarat

Socarrat Paella

Socarrat is always my midtown go to. Why not indulge in their paella for NYC Restaurant Week? They offer a variety of different kinds of paella as well so if you’re not into seafood, there will be plenty of options. Most of the paella’s they serve are for two so prepare your appetite and bring a hungry friend.

Type of restaurant: Spanish

Perfect for: When you’re looking for a quick spot to grab a great bite.

What you need to know: They have multiple locations all over New York City so you’ll always have access to one.

Book Now

Gaby Brasserie Française

If you plan on going to a french restaurant, bring extra cash so that you can order all of the desserts available. Gaby’s is serving up a few classic favorites that will leave your sweet tooth asking for more.

Type of restaurant: French

Perfect for: Groups or eating family style

What you need to know: They’re in the Sofitel Hotel so don’t get lost trying to locate this one.

Book Now


Haru Gramercy Park

Gather around sushi lovers because if you haven’t discovered Haru yet, now’s your chance. Known for their sake specials all over the city, it’s easy to run up a hefty tab. Don’t miss the deal they’re offering for Winter Restaurant Week.

Type of restaurant: Asian Fusion

Perfect for: After work with friends, Date Night

What you need to know: There are plenty of Haru locations, all who offer something different.  Just don’t go on a first date, it may be hard to hear the other person over all the other conversations.

Book Now

Maya Restaurant Margarita


They’re a few blocks from the nearest train but worth the walk. Maya is a pretty large establishment so you won’t have worry too much about waiting on a table for a group or even for two. The atmosphere is almost modern mayan giving you old world vibes with a twist.

Type of restaurant: Mexican

Perfect for: Any occasion 

What you need to know: The margaritas here are to die for. Don’t leave without one.

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The Sea Grill

If you’re interested in romantic city views, this Rockefeller Center restaurant is where you’ll want to be. You can even host private events here when it’s not NYC Restaurant Week. The menu has a lot to offer for this steal of a deal and seafood lovers are flocking to make a reservation.

Type of restaurant: Seafood

Perfect for: Special Occasions 

What you need to know: 

Book Now

Arlington Club
Photo Courtesy of Arlington Club

Arlington Club

The great thing about NYC Restaurant week now is that you can even drop in on a Sunday for dinner at a few locations. Arlington Club is one of them and they’ll be happy to receive you with open arms.

Type of restaurant: Steakhouse

Perfect for: A night out with friends 

What you need to know: You don’t have to dress up, but you should. Grab your friends and hit the town + order the steak.

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Fig & Olive Downtown

This restaurant is always on my to eat list but that will change this NYC Restaurant week. Not only do they have great happy hour deals, but the dinner here is infamous amongst NYC diners.

Type of restaurant: MMediterranean 

Perfect for: Any occasion 

What you need to know: The Brunch menu isn’t offered online but that shouldn’t deter you from making a reservation

Book now

Photo Courtesy of Grub Street


Minton’s has been in the game for a while as one of Harlem’s gems but now you have access to experience it. With features like live music, and Chef JJ in the kitchen, you’re in for a treat.

Type of restaurant: New American

Perfect for: Late Nite Vibes and Romantic dates

What you need to know: Be sure to wear your dancing shoes because the jazz music here will make you want to do more than just tap your foot.

Book Now

Download our FREE NYC Pocket Guide

Do you often find yourself questioning where you should dine this weekend? Or maybe you’re tired of the same NYC restaurants. This NYC pocket guide takes you to 10 Food Before Love Favorites that will change how you eat. It’s perfect if you’re visiting NYC and are tired of relying on yelp. Let your taste buds have a party. .

Toloache Tacos

Thanks to NYC Restaurant Week, I had the chance to dine at Toloache, which specializes in Mexican food. I was beyond disappointed about the wait to get a table, but even more excited as to why everyone was trying to get a table at this establishment.

Tolache hosts diners downstairs, as well as, on the second level which wasn’t as loud or as packed. Cocktails are always the right way to start an evening and having dinner at Toloache would be no different. I ordered a Strawberry and Watermelon Cocktail. It blew my socks off! Perfectly blended cocktails is obviously something Tolache specializes in.

Toloache Cocktail

You know the saying “When in Rome”.  I ordered the Tacos, admittedly having high expectations. The tacos came out on a tortilla with the right amount of kick, although it lacked other flavors to really “wow” the table.

Toloache Tacos

The true prize of the evening was the entree. Toloache outdid themselves with the Entrana which was a seven chile rubbed skirt steak served with a Brussel Sprout-queso Fresco Salad. By far the best brussel sprouts I have ever had, tasted like bacon. I believe they even out did the skirt steak. I would go back just for this dish which left me talking about Toloache for days to follow.

Toloache Entrana

To end the night, I went out of my comfort zone and tried to the Tres Leche. I felt it was a little too moist for my liking. I know Tres Leche can be a hit or miss dish so I was completely open to how this could have played out. Personally not a fan but the decorative sauce was a winner I wished I could have had with chocolate.

Toloache Tres leches