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How to Pitch to Eater NY

Whether you’re an experienced journalist, a recent graduate, or a restaurant worker, here’s where to start

As part of the Eater network under the Vox Media umbrella, Eater NY is a New York City local news and service site covering the business and culture of the restaurant industry.

We’re excited to work with you and introduce new voices on the site. While most of the assignments we commission are written by people with journalism experience, don’t let that deter you if you’re just starting out in your writing career, or working in another industry altogether.

Eater New York looks forward to pitches that fall into a few main categories:

Reported features

Reported features offer the most opportunity for freelancers. They typically run between 900 and 1,600 words. The rule of thumb here is to think headline first: How can I summarize this story in one sentence, and am I interested in reading a story about it?

These features need to have a strong restaurant element — and ideally, the story places restaurants in some kind of context: how hospitality intersects with real estate, business, technology, labor, identity, science, politics, pop culture, history, etc. Pegging stories to current events, trends, breaking news, and ongoing industry topics also helps. Regardless of whether it’s pegged to something in the news, it’s good to answer the question: Why does this matter right now?

Some recent freelanced features include:

Where to submit:


While we tend to handle most openings in-house, we always welcome freelancers to pitch those we may have missed. A good rule of thumb is if this is a restaurant opening with a PR team, we’re likely already aware of it; we would much rather work with freelancers on restaurant openings that are more under the radar. In general, it’s always helpful to pitch with notice ahead of the public opening date. Some openings we’ve worked on with freelancers include:

Where to submit:

Maps and guides

Eater NY has a robust maps and guides collection that’s the bedrock of service journalism for the site. We regularly publish maps as guides to neighborhoods (Williamsburg, UES), the best versions of a dish (cookies, fried chicken) or cuisine (Korean barbecue, Filipino), and to fill a situational need (big groups, client entertaining).

We’re always looking for new maps and guides based on what people might be looking for online, and to update popular ones. We’re especially interested in finding writers with a particular subject-matter expertise to contribute, or who are based in the neighborhood they wish to cover. Here are examples of recent maps and guides pitched by freelancers:

Where to submit:

News stories

News for Eater NY primarily means restaurant openings and restaurant closings, though it also includes lawsuits, labor developments, or expansions, for example. This is the most difficult genre to pitch, since many stories are already on our radar, and news requires deep sources and quick turnaround and it’s often assigned in-house.

It helps to look at what Eater NY has already covered, which will help not only with getting an idea of the kinds of stories we cover but also which restaurants are big players in our world. Here are examples of news stories pitched by freelancers:

Where to submit:

Opinion or personal writing

For opinion and personal writing, the topic must speak specifically to the New York City-area audience. We’ve published many in-house opinions during and after the pandemic – and we’d like to include more from the NYC community – particularly from people who work in restaurants. The piece should make an argument for a fresh way to view a trend, item, or other standard procedure in the restaurant world. They can (and usually should) include a personal element explaining why you are the authority. They can be funny or have funny elements, but that’s not a requirement. Though the pieces are pegged to personal experience or opinion, the pitches should still be thoroughly reported and fact-checked.

Here are a few recent examples:

Where to submit:

Regardless of what you’re pitching, whether it’s news, features, opinions, etc., We’re looking for pitches that contain answers, not questions (which means you should have done some of the work before you pitched to us). It should give a clear, concise summary of the subject, angle, or thesis, as well as your anticipated story structure.

Keep in mind we do have a small staff that covers the New York market, so think about why you are uniquely qualified to write the news piece, feature, profile, or map. Furthermore, if there’s a conflict of interest regarding the story you’re pitching – you’ve worked with the restaurant in another capacity, you’re an influencer and you’ve gotten free food at a place – please include that information in the pitch.

What we’re not looking for

We do not cover recipes and home cooking at all on Eater NY. Other things we’re not very interested in: Stories about health, wellness, or diets; I-only-ate-[whatever]-for-a-month stunts; linear travelogues; and stories that lack a significant narrative hook or meaningful cultural resonance.

We do not accept traditional restaurant reviews from freelancers. We do not cover food “holidays”: Grilled cheese day, cookie day, mac and cheese day, or whatever — we do not recognize them as real holidays.

We also almost never cover products, meaning please no pitches on food items that are only sold in grocery stores. Again, the food or drink that you’re covering is ideally sold in a restaurant, bar, cafe, food truck, food hall, or in another made-to-order fashion that resembles a restaurant.

If you’re looking to pitch a national story, click here to find out more about what sort of pitches Eater’s national site seeks.