You’re never more than ten feet away from a great place to eat in Times Square, but you’re also never more than ten feet away from a terrible one. As the number one tourist destination in New York City, plenty of provisions have been made for hungry visitors inside Times Square, but not all of them are worth sampling. In fact, some of them will give you a terrible sense of buyer’s remorse.
The best thing you can do if you want to enjoy great food while you’re in the area is to ask a local, but even in doing that, you’ll find a range of different opinions. Many of them will direct you to some of the biggest and best-known restaurants in the area, but we’re putting them to one side for this article. Instead, we want to shine a spotlight on some of the lesser-known venues. They’re not necessarily hidden gems – everybody knows they’re there – but they sometimes go unnoticed as bigger names or larger venues hog the spotlight.
There’s no such thing as having too many options when it comes to dining, but narrowing down the selection to just a few excellent choices can make planning your evening’s entertainment much easier. With that in mind, here are five great Times Square dining choices that are highly-rated by the local residents and may have escaped your attention until now.
We were initially going to stay away from chain restaurants for this article, but then we relented because we remembered that Sushi Seki exists. You’ll find Japanese restaurants in every major city in the world, and some of them are great, but there’s a difference between authentic Japanese dining and fine Japanese dining. You might not even realize that distinction exists until your first visit to Sushi Seki.
This restaurant has been attracting rave reviews ever since it opened, and it’s only gone from strength to strength since then. It’s hard to put an original twist on sushi, but this venue has managed it. Try the spicy scallop hand roll, but stick around for the unusual pairings that come with the rolled sushi. Open your mind, expand your horizons, and let this restaurant take you on a culinary tour of the Far East.
Virgil’s Real Barbecue
Someone from the south might tell you that you can’t get real barbecue food in New York City, and that only people from the south know how to spice barbecue meat properly. That’s because not enough people from the south have been to the Times Square branch of Virgil’s Real Barbecue – a venue that’s been blowing people’s minds for over two decades.
While it’s probably true to say that the average barbecue really is better in the south than in the north, the taste and texture of Memphis have been imported to New York inside Virgil’s. The blue cheese dip is so strong that it might overpower you if you’re not used to it, but you needn’t let that concern you when there are so many other sauces to distract you. We may never have tasted better chicken wings – and that’s saying a lot.
Los Tacos No. 1
As a nation, we’ve developed an unhealthy obsession with Mexican food. That’s not just an American thing – it’s spread across the whole world. There are online slots websites in Europe that feature a game called ‘Hot Chilli, ‘ which is all about Mexican cuisine. You can say what you want about Italian, French, or American cuisine, but people don’t tend to make online slots about it. When a type of food is so attractive that it can attract people to slots UK new, the people who make it are really onto something.
There are now four different ‘Los Tacos’ spots in New York, but the one we have in mind is on 43rd street. This is the perfect place to visit for food ‘on the go.’ You won’t get table service, and so it isn’t a date destination, but if you like things spicy, you won’t find it done better anywhere else.
There should always be a place for classic French cuisine, and fortunately for us, that place is right in the middle of Times Square. It comes in the shape of Le Rivage. Step through the doors, and it’s like traveling back in time to an era where things were just that little bit more classy and sophisticated. The busy world outside simply ceases to exist the moment you take your seat at a table.
If you know your way around French cuisine, you’re unlikely to find anything here that you haven’t tried before. We’re talking duck a l’orange, escargots, and garlic butter on anything. What makes it so special is the fact that while you might have had it before, you won’t be able to remember it ever tasting this good.
This is New York. If we’re not going to recommend a restaurant that serves incredible Italian-American food, what’s the point of us writing this article at all? Carmine’s is one of many places you could go if that’s what you’re craving, but there’s something a little special about Carmine’s. We don’t know if it’s the food, the atmosphere, or a combination of the two things together.
Carmine’s is a place that doesn’t stiff you on portion sizes. If you’re going there to eat, make sure you bring your appetite with you. It might not be as refined or sophisticated as some of the area’s fine-dining choices, but who wants to be sophisticated all the time? This is a place where you can relax and bask in great flavors – and at the end of it all, that’s what food should really be about.
Are there other places you could go for great food in Times Square? Of course there are, and lots of them! These are just a few highlights that occasionally get missed, and if you’ve never paid any of them a visit, they’re all worth a moment of your time to consider. Every restaurant in Times Square wants your business – but some deserve it more than others!