Lunch in New York

Lunch in New York

Lunch in New York is typically between 11:00 and 15:00. Although 11:00 might seem early, what New Yorkers do is actually skip breakfast and call it brunch. Many places have special lunch menus, with dishes for half the normal price. It’s a pretty good idea to visit the restaurants of your choice during the day – although the ambience during lunch might be a bit different.

The best lunch spots in New York

As a pizza lover, I recommend first and foremost to get a nice slice at one of my top 5 pizza places. The second pizza place on the list truly is a ‘must’, because they sell individual pizza slices. Another one of my lunchtime favourites: having a burger. Check out my list of the best burgers in New York.

Balthazar

Would you like to treat yourself to a good old-school New York brunch? And are you willing to pay for it? Go to the upscale Balthazar, a pretty fancy restaurant. To give you an idea: eggs with toast and coffee will cost you $30, a grilled cheese sandwich $18. You do get excellent service and great food for these prices, all French food and special dishes. Since Balthazar is right in the heart of SoHo, this is the place to spot models and wealthy people.

Jack’s Wife Freda

Jack’s Wife Freda has multiple locations in New York and is a great place for lunch or brunch. They serve Mediterranean food such as grilled halloumi and peri-peri chicken. Their rosewater waffles are also very nice. I personally like the artsy interior design, very hipster New York.

Lunch in New York - Jack's Wife Freda

Lunch on the go in New York

One of the things I love to do is to grab lunch for on the go. You can sit outside and enjoy the view of the city while having a slice of pizza.

Eric’s Tip: My two favourite places to enjoy lunch are either Brooklyn Bridge Park or the High Line. The High Line is particularly nice because it’s closer to the Chelsea Market where there is a large selection of options to choose from.

Food Halls

There are many food halls in New York. A food hall is a great place to have lunch, especially if you are with a family. Because everything is in close proximity everyone can pick their own lunch. Often there are places to sit down, but you can also take it to-go.

The best food halls in New York:

  • Turnstyle (underground at Columbus Circle)
  • Eataly (200 5th Avenue)
  • Urbanspace Vanderbilt (230 Park Avenue)
  • Chelsea Market (75 9th Avenue)
  • Mercado Little Spain (inside Hudson Yards)
  • Le District (225 Liberty Street)
  • Essex Street Market (120 Essex Street)

Lunch in New York - Urbanspace Vanderbilt

Essen

Fresh, healthy food, without complicated menus or extortionate prices? It’s all possible at Essen. This chain serves their food with a similar concept to Whole Foods: in self-service bowls and boxes. Put your own meal together and take it outside to enjoy on a bench or as a picnic in a park. Essen serves foods from all corners of the world, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese and Greek, to name a few.

Whole Foods

Enter the Time Warner building at Columbus Circle and take the escalator down. Here you’ll find Whole Foods: a giant supermarket with delicious fresh sandwiches, fresh sushi, pizza (hello again), drinks and so on. They’re also known for their famous soups. The freshly prepared dishes will be served with a special cover to keep them warm. It will still be hot when you get to Central Park – although you can just eat it straight away as well, of course!

Delis and their Salad Bars

There are many sandwich shops in Manhattan: delis (or ‘bodegas’ as New Yorkers call them). Many delis have a salad bar. Here you can create your very own salad. Having a hard time choosing the best sandwich? Always ask for the house special. If you’re interested in a healthy option for lunch, then I highly recommend going to Sweetgreen.

Lunch for a special occasion in New York

Do you have something to celebrate while in New York? There are a couple of options to have a special lunch. One of my favourites is to take the Bateaux lunch cruise. The Bateaux boat is made completely of glass which allows for spectacular views of the skyline. The Bateaux has a pre-set lunch. You can also opt for a lunch cruise with buffet.

Peak is a restaurant in New York located in Hudson Yards, one floor above the observation deck Edge. Wherever you sit you’ll have a fantastic view of the city; you can see Empire State Building up close, One World Trade Center at a distance.

Lunch in New York - Peak

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