clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Decibel Levels in New York's Hottest Restaurants

New, 28 comments
The Breslin by Krieger

Critics, bloggers, and Eater readers frequently complain about noise levels in New York restaurants these days. Adam Platt wrote about the "Great Noise Boom" last month, and before that Robert Sietsema offered his own take on the noise problem. With this issue in mind, Eater set out to collect hard data on some of the worst offenders. Here, now, are peak decibel levels recorded at 19 of the city's hottest restaurants in order of loud to loudest:

Before we jump into the hard data, here are some decibel level comparisons from the American Academy of Audiology:
Moderate: 50 - 60 dB. Dishwashers and rainfall.
Loud: 70 - 80 dB. Vacuums and alarm clocks.
Very Loud: 90 - 110 dB. Power tools, snowmobiles, sporting events.
Uncomfortable: 120 dB. Jet planes during take off; dangerous over 30 seconds.

All of the following data was recorded in the dining rooms (not the bar areas) of these restaurants after 6:30 p.m. using the Decibelmeter app.
[All photos by Daniel Krieger unless otherwise noted]

It's worth noting that Ryan Sutton includes decibel levels in all of his reviews. — Data compiled by Emma Kestler, Lily Freedman, and Layla Khabiri


158 8th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

Uncle Boons

7 Spring Street, Manhattan, NY 10012 (646) 370-6650 Visit Website

The General

199 Bowery, New York, NY 10002 (212) 271-7101


9 Great Jones Street, Manhattan, NY 10012 (212) 203-2121 Visit Website


17 West 26th Street, Manhattan, NY 10010 (646) 490-8240 Visit Website

El Toro Blanco

257 6th Avenue, Manhattan, NY 10014 (212) 645-0193 Visit Website

il Buco

47 Bond Street, Manhattan, NY 10012 (212) 533-1932 Visit Website


248 Mulberry Street, Manhattan, NY 10012 (212) 993-7189 Visit Website


380 Lafayette Street, Manhattan, NY 10003 (212) 533-3000 Visit Website

The Butterfly

225 W Broadway, New York, NY 10013

The Breslin

16 West 29th Street, Manhattan, NY 10001 (212) 679-1939 Visit Website

Charlie Bird

5 King Street, Manhattan, NY 10012 (212) 235-7133 Visit Website

Willow Road

85 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10011 Visit Website

Salvation Taco

145 East 39th Street, Manhattan, NY 10016 (212) 865-5800 Visit Website