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Where to Eat in Manhattan this Summer

June 19, 2019

Hitting New York for NYC Pride, planning a long weekend or in the city for a business trip? No matter the occasion, if you're Big Apple bound this summer, these are the Manhattan restaurants and cafes to add to your list.

Vegetarians, look away now: Seductive, dim-lit, smoky Korean barbecue Cote is a celebration of all things beef, replete with its own glass-encased ageing room in the basement. Slip into a quiet booth to enjoy steaks as beautifully marbled as the tables they are served on, then roll up your sleeves for DIY grill thrills and lashings of kimchi and pickled legumes.

A handful of branches across town means that Spanish tapas stalwart Boquería is always buzzing but never too swamped. The petite Flatiron perch is the original outlet, offering cosy two-top or counterside seating and Barcelona-style morsels like pan con tomate, grilled octopus, and perf-stewed seafood paella.

Billed as ‘a modern twist on the classic neighbourhood steak joint’, Quality Eats eschews the overdone NYC steakhouse paradigm in favour of affordable, reasonably proportioned, quality cuts. New York strips and whopping Tomahawks are substituted with 8oz bistro-style bavettes and tender hanger steaks, all coming in at under 30 bucks each. Winner.

Culinary fads may come and go, but The City Bakery has remained a constant, with some 25 years under owner-patissier Maury Rubin's toque. Totter up to the tucked-away mezzanine to feast on signature pretzel croissants and XL cookies.

While the popular Lower East Side original is as tight as a postage stamp, Mexican cantina La Contenta Oeste offers way more space, plus a vast polished concrete bar for sipping a few Margarit-ivos while waiting to be seated. As always, the zingy, largely gluten-free Mexican fare is a sure-fire win, with classics ranging from corn-dough ‘gordita’ patties stuffed with huitlacoche succotash to fresh crab meat tostadas.

Sunny all-day Italian diner Roey’s (formerly Rosemary’s Pizza) is a primo perch for watching the world go by, with its 50-odd seats spilling out onto the Greenwich Avenue sidewalk. Newly revamped menus push far beyond the pizza n’ pasta model, with highlights including Intelligentsia coffee, Grass Roots juices and vegan pastries for brekkie, cacio e pepe organic egg sandwiches, lasagna verde and Rosemary's roast chicken. 

Originally written for PenCities.

For curated recommendations you can trust, don't forget to pack some LUXE.

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