My 2017 NYC Food Diary

New York City is full of tons and tons of really good food. Since this was my first year living there, I decided to try as many different things as I could. I came across so many amazing restaurants that I could barley keep track of the places I’ve tried. However, the camera roll on my phone is full of delicious looking plates that I never posted. So, since I never really do food posts (I can only cook about 5 different things) I decided to round up some of the best places I ate at this year! Hopefully this gives you some ideas for your own foodie adventure!

Clinton Hall: This place is seriously so much fun! I actually won a contest and got to go for the first time for free with some of my friends and we had a really great time! They have tons of games, like giant Connect Four for example! They also have a huge selection of beer. There burgers are amazinggg. But, the desserts are the real show stopper. We had decedent red velvet waffles and doughnuts that we could inject with caramel and chocolate! So good. There are locations in the Financial District, in Seaport, and in the Bronx.


Row House: This was one of the best brunches I ever had! I ordered their Crab Cake Benedict and a bloody marry and it was delicious. I also had a side of sausage and some coffee. I definitely want to go back again this year! The atmosphere was very classy — it was so nice inside, but not portentous at all. There was also some live instrumental music playing. It’s located in Harlem and I would highly recommend.


Bus Stop Diner: This quant diner in Hamilton Heights feels like home. Me and my best friend ate here every single Sunday for a few months straight. It has the cheapest deals on brunch and it’s so good!


Clove: This Indian restaurant in Hamilton Heights is delicious. I always order the chicken marsala! The prices are not too bad, pretty normal compared to other Indian restaurants I’ve been to.


Le Pain Quotidien: This is an upscale French cafe near Bryant Park in Manhattan. It’s a really nice place to do some work and have a nice lunch, but it was busy and pretty expensive.


Dig Inn: This place is healthy and still so yummy! I love it! The couple times I’ve been I ordered the Marketbowl with meatballs, mac, and sweet potatoes over rice.


Xian Famous Foods: This noodle place is very popular. There are various locations across the Burroughs. When I went, I had the Stewed Pork Hand-Ripped Noodles. So good!


Brgr: This is one of the best burgers I’ve had in NYC. Their burgers are made from 100% grass-fed beef and everything tasted very fresh. They even had cute little mini bottles of wine. The location I went to was right across the street from FIT so it was a great place to grab a bite to eat after wandering through the Museum at FIT (which is free btw).


Soft Swerve: This is a super trendy ice cream shop in Soho, Manhattan. It had a super long wait, but I think it was worth it. I had the Ube Purple Yam swirled with Macapuno Coconut and topped with cereal marshmallows and toasted almonds. It was different than any ice cream I had before, but I personally loved it.


Sylvia’s: This is a famous soul food restaurant in Harlem. It’s so amazing! One of my favorite places for dinner, hands down. I always get the fried chicken, mac and cheese, and either sweet potatoes or mashed. Soooo good! There sweet tea is really great as well.


Thai at Lex: Chicken pad thai is one of my favorite dishes of all time. This is one of the only places I’ve had it in NYC, but it did not disappoint! I also had a thai iced tea, which was equally enjoyable. I definitely want to go back.


Hou Yi Hot Pot: This was a new experience for me. Basically everything is served family style (so it’s good to go with a group of friends). You get raw meats and veggies ordered to your table and then you cook them yourself in flavored broth in a “hot pot” at the table. It was really good! You pay a flat rate per person, I think it was $30, and it’s all you can eat and all you can drink. I was able to try so many different things! There was also an ice cream selection for dessert.


ROKC: This is a really nice ramen noodle place in Hamilton Heights. The wait was very long, but I would say the experience was worth it. They serve all of their drinks in super creative ways (I had part of my drink in an actual eggshell, served in a fake bird’s nest). And the ramen and oysters were very yummy, of course!


Don Coqui: This is a high-end Puerto Rican restaurant in Astoria, Queens. I recently went with my friends and I had the salmon — which was cooked to perfection! We had a three-course meal for $30 each. But, beware of the expensive drink prices.


Billy’s Bakery: This is a very cute bakery and the one I went to was near FIT. It was a small, adorable spot with teal colored tables and benches. It was very Instagramable. I had the pumpkin spice cheesecake and it was great! Yup, I’m #basic and proud!


Geisha Sushi: One of my favorite sushi spots in the city so far! This place is also in Hamilton Heights, Manhattan. They have a huge selection of rolls and some pretty good drinks too.


Maison Harlem: This is a French bistro in Harlem. It’s pretty fancy and pricey, not going to lie. But, it was super good! I had the Truffle Mac & Cheese and the Crème Brûlée for dessert.


*Random brunch spot in Soho*: Okay, I can’t remember what this place was called for the life of me because me and my friend Bri just randomly ended up there one day towards the beginning of the year. But how good did our food look?! I still had to include it.



Side Note: If some random place is having a grand opening on Broadway, near Times Square, and they offer you free cotton candy with a doughnut on top, then make sure you don’t pass that up!


What’s your favorite type of food?

xoxo, Kayla

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