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Alex Staniloff

The Hottest Restaurants in Manhattan Right Now, October 2018

These places are burning up the borough

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Eater editors get asked one question more than any other: Where should I eat right now? NYC dining obsessives want to know what’s new, what’s hot, and what is going to be the next big hit in the greatest dining city on earth. So here it is, a guide to the hottest restaurants in Manhattan this month.

September brings three new additions: the Woo (the updated return of a Korean favorite in Soho), Shake Shack Innovation Kitchen (Manhattan’s newest Shake Shack with chicken nuggets), and Bluebird (the very first import of a hot British restaurant group).

For more New York dining recommendations, check out the new hotspots in Brooklyn and Queens; the Eater 38 lists the essential long-standing restaurants in town.

For all the latest New York dining intel, subscribe to Eater NY's newsletter.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Gazala’s

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447 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10024
(212) 787-1800
Visit Website

Popular Druze restaurant Gazala’s has made its return to the Upper West Side, serving chef-owner Gazala Halabi’s thin, springy pitas. There’s already a small location in Hell’s Kitchen, but this bigger new outpost offers a longer menu, as well as booze. Beyond Halabi’s spreads and kebabs, expect shrimp hummus, shawarma, and cauliflower tahini salad in the 100-seat space. Israeli wines and cocktails with arak, an anise liquor, dominate the drink menu.

Gazala Halabi

2. Bluebird

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10 Columbus Circle Third floor
New York, NY 10019
(347) 682-2100
Visit Website

Revered British restaurant group D&D crosses the pond for the first time ever with its popular London restaurant Bluebird. Now perched on the third floor in Time Warner Center, Bluebird is open all day with a cafe up front that turns into a wine bar at night and a colorful dining room further in that overlooks Central Park. Food is what one would expect from a British import — Cornish chicken pie, beef Wellington, and fish and chips — as well as a posh afternoon tea.

Alex Staniloff

3. Henry

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at Life Hotel, 19 W 31st St
New York, NY 10001
(212) 615-9910
Visit Website

Chef JJ Johnson nabbed the city’s attention while cooking at Harlem restaurants, and since leaving the Cecil and Minton’s a year ago, his takeover of Henry at the Life Hotel in Midtown is the first time he’ll be back in a full-service restaurant kitchen. He’s calling the menu here pan-African — an amalgamation of flavors from across Africa, the Caribbean, and the American South. A short rib with millet, hoisin barbecue sauce, and black beans is on the menu, as is a collard green salad and shrimp and pork dumplings with Portuguese sausage. Drinks come from acclaimed former Seamstress bartender Pam Wiznitzer, who’s also drawing flavors from the cuisine of the African Diaspora for cocktails.

Photo by Bea da Costa

4. Atomix

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Read Review |
7392, 104 E 30th St
New York, NY 10016

The team behind critically-acclaimed Atoboy has gone upscale at Atomix in Nomad. Ellia and Junghyun Park, an alum of two-Michelin-starred Jungsik, serve a $175 tasting menu in the subdued, grey space. Seafood is a focus in the 10-course meal, which includes options like a soup with burdock, fish cakes, baby corn, and plum blossom. At a bar, BlackTail and Dead Rabbit alum serve up drinks with Korean flavors as well.

Photo by Louise Palmberg

5. Hao Noodle

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343 W 14th St
New York, NY 10014
(646) 882-0059
Visit Website

Hit Greenwich Village Chinese restaurant Hao Noodle and Tea has added a second space, not so far away in Chelsea, focused on food meant to accompany drinking. Like the critically acclaimed original, this location serves up flavorful and on-point pan-regional Chinese fare in dishes such as cumin lamb skewers, dandan noodles, and beef short ribs with pineapple in black pepper sauce. It all goes down in a very pretty plant-filled space with an open kitchen.

Photo via Hao Noodle/Instagram

6. Kyma

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15 W 18th St
New York, NY 10011
(212) 268-5555
Visit Website

Greek fare gets a slick setting at Kyma, a massive new restaurant in Flatiron that is the first NYC location of a popular Long Island restaurant. The whitewashed space seats 250 on two floors, stocked with breezy, patio-like furniture and Ancient Greek terra cotta motifs. Seafood is a big event here, including whole grilled fish both imported and from the Atlantic that arrive to the table deboned. A robust list of appetizers, salads, pasta, and a raw bar round out the menu; on an early visit, Robert Sietsema particularly enjoyed a refreshing watermelon salad. Expect the vibes to lean lively — owner Reno Christou has said he plans to bring in a DJ once a week.

Photo by Robert Sietsema

7. Kish-Kash

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Read Review |
455 Hudson St
New York, NY 10014

The chef behind Middle Eastern hits like Taïm now has Kish-Kash in West Village, a restaurant dedicated to Moroccan-style couscous. Einat Admony makes it by hand, fairly rare in NYC, and the intended result is a fluffy, very fine grain. The 30-seat space is packed with patterns, and everything costs less than $21 on the slim menu, including couscous with short rib, stewed vegetables, spicy fish, or three-lemon chicken tagine. Though couscous is the main event, Kish-Kash also offers a salad, hummus, and a Moroccan cookie for dessert.

Photo by Gary He

8. Shake Shack Innovation Kitchen

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225 Varick St
New York, NY 10014
(646) 517-1541
Visit Website

Every New Yorker knows and loves homegrown burger chain Shake Shack, and now its figurehead Danny Meyer has given the beloved brand an update. The newest West Village location seems like any other on the ground floor, but lying below is what’s called an Innovation Kitchen. It’s where the team will test out new menu items, such as chicken nuggets and a cold brew matcha latte, already on the menu upstairs.

Shake Shack [Official Photo]

9. The Woo

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206 Spring St
New York, NY 10012

From the daughter of the woman who ran now-closed Woo Lae Oak comes the Woo, a three-floor Korean barbecue restaurant in Soho built for 2018. Owner Julie Choi has gone for what she calls a more “refined and elegant atmosphere” than a typically more rowdy KBBQ, also serving a spread of Korean dishes from kimbap to simmered fish. But the main focus is barbecue, with more than a dozen options from duck to yellowfin tuna.

The Woo [Official Photo]

10. Kopitiam

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151 E Broadway, New York
NY 10002, United States

Tiny Malaysian cafe Kopitiam has been reborn on the Lower East Side with a much larger space — and now, chef-owner Kyo Pang is running the show with restaurateur Moonlynn Tsai, who previously helped open an uber-hip restaurant in LA. Pang serves baba-nyonya food, cuisine introduced to Malaysia by Chinese immigrants and frequently combining the two. At the colorful all-day affair with counter service, find thick-cut sweet toasts and Malaysian-style boiled egg in the morning and dishes like spicy stir-fried duck tongue and grilled fish cake heading toward lunch. Go for dessert; there are lots of sweet, bite-sized snacks like a coconut crepe available. Like at the original, both black coffee with ghee and Penang-style white coffee are on deck, too. Closed Wednesdays.

Photo by Jean Schwarzwalder

11. Manhatta

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28 Liberty St
New York, NY 10005
(212) 230-5788
Visit Website

Hospitality titan Danny Meyer’s latest debut takes diners 60 floors above the Financial District, serving a three-course prix fixe menu alongside a pretty incredible view. Luxe dishes like peekytoe crab salad with poached leeks and artichokes; veal blanquette with wilted greens and mushrooms; and lobster quenelles with trumpet mushrooms and chervil make up the $78 menu from chef Jason Pfeifer. Expect expense accounters alongside tourists alongside Meyer fans.

Alex Staniloff

1. Gazala’s

447 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024
Gazala Halabi

Popular Druze restaurant Gazala’s has made its return to the Upper West Side, serving chef-owner Gazala Halabi’s thin, springy pitas. There’s already a small location in Hell’s Kitchen, but this bigger new outpost offers a longer menu, as well as booze. Beyond Halabi’s spreads and kebabs, expect shrimp hummus, shawarma, and cauliflower tahini salad in the 100-seat space. Israeli wines and cocktails with arak, an anise liquor, dominate the drink menu.

447 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10024

2. Bluebird

10 Columbus Circle Third floor, New York, NY 10019
Alex Staniloff

Revered British restaurant group D&D crosses the pond for the first time ever with its popular London restaurant Bluebird. Now perched on the third floor in Time Warner Center, Bluebird is open all day with a cafe up front that turns into a wine bar at night and a colorful dining room further in that overlooks Central Park. Food is what one would expect from a British import — Cornish chicken pie, beef Wellington, and fish and chips — as well as a posh afternoon tea.

10 Columbus Circle Third floor
New York, NY 10019

3. Henry

at Life Hotel, 19 W 31st St, New York, NY 10001
Photo by Bea da Costa

Chef JJ Johnson nabbed the city’s attention while cooking at Harlem restaurants, and since leaving the Cecil and Minton’s a year ago, his takeover of Henry at the Life Hotel in Midtown is the first time he’ll be back in a full-service restaurant kitchen. He’s calling the menu here pan-African — an amalgamation of flavors from across Africa, the Caribbean, and the American South. A short rib with millet, hoisin barbecue sauce, and black beans is on the menu, as is a collard green salad and shrimp and pork dumplings with Portuguese sausage. Drinks come from acclaimed former Seamstress bartender Pam Wiznitzer, who’s also drawing flavors from the cuisine of the African Diaspora for cocktails.

at Life Hotel, 19 W 31st St
New York, NY 10001

4. Atomix

7392, 104 E 30th St, New York, NY 10016
Read Review |
Photo by Louise Palmberg

The team behind critically-acclaimed Atoboy has gone upscale at Atomix in Nomad. Ellia and Junghyun Park, an alum of two-Michelin-starred Jungsik, serve a $175 tasting menu in the subdued, grey space. Seafood is a focus in the 10-course meal, which includes options like a soup with burdock, fish cakes, baby corn, and plum blossom. At a bar, BlackTail and Dead Rabbit alum serve up drinks with Korean flavors as well.

7392, 104 E 30th St
New York, NY 10016

5. Hao Noodle

343 W 14th St, New York, NY 10014
Photo via Hao Noodle/Instagram

Hit Greenwich Village Chinese restaurant Hao Noodle and Tea has added a second space, not so far away in Chelsea, focused on food meant to accompany drinking. Like the critically acclaimed original, this location serves up flavorful and on-point pan-regional Chinese fare in dishes such as cumin lamb skewers, dandan noodles, and beef short ribs with pineapple in black pepper sauce. It all goes down in a very pretty plant-filled space with an open kitchen.

343 W 14th St
New York, NY 10014

6. Kyma

15 W 18th St, New York, NY 10011
Photo by Robert Sietsema

Greek fare gets a slick setting at Kyma, a massive new restaurant in Flatiron that is the first NYC location of a popular Long Island restaurant. The whitewashed space seats 250 on two floors, stocked with breezy, patio-like furniture and Ancient Greek terra cotta motifs. Seafood is a big event here, including whole grilled fish both imported and from the Atlantic that arrive to the table deboned. A robust list of appetizers, salads, pasta, and a raw bar round out the menu; on an early visit, Robert Sietsema particularly enjoyed a refreshing watermelon salad. Expect the vibes to lean lively — owner Reno Christou has said he plans to bring in a DJ once a week.

15 W 18th St
New York, NY 10011

7. Kish-Kash

455 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014
Read Review |
Photo by Gary He

The chef behind Middle Eastern hits like Taïm now has Kish-Kash in West Village, a restaurant dedicated to Moroccan-style couscous. Einat Admony makes it by hand, fairly rare in NYC, and the intended result is a fluffy, very fine grain. The 30-seat space is packed with patterns, and everything costs less than $21 on the slim menu, including couscous with short rib, stewed vegetables, spicy fish, or three-lemon chicken tagine. Though couscous is the main event, Kish-Kash also offers a salad, hummus, and a Moroccan cookie for dessert.

455 Hudson St
New York, NY 10014

8. Shake Shack Innovation Kitchen

225 Varick St, New York, NY 10014
Shake Shack [Official Photo]

Every New Yorker knows and loves homegrown burger chain Shake Shack, and now its figurehead Danny Meyer has given the beloved brand an update. The newest West Village location seems like any other on the ground floor, but lying below is what’s called an Innovation Kitchen. It’s where the team will test out new menu items, such as chicken nuggets and a cold brew matcha latte, already on the menu upstairs.

225 Varick St
New York, NY 10014

9. The Woo

206 Spring St, New York, NY 10012
The Woo [Official Photo]

From the daughter of the woman who ran now-closed Woo Lae Oak comes the Woo, a three-floor Korean barbecue restaurant in Soho built for 2018. Owner Julie Choi has gone for what she calls a more “refined and elegant atmosphere” than a typically more rowdy KBBQ, also serving a spread of Korean dishes from kimbap to simmered fish. But the main focus is barbecue, with more than a dozen options from duck to yellowfin tuna.

206 Spring St
New York, NY 10012

10. Kopitiam

151 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002, United States
Photo by Jean Schwarzwalder

Tiny Malaysian cafe Kopitiam has been reborn on the Lower East Side with a much larger space — and now, chef-owner Kyo Pang is running the show with restaurateur Moonlynn Tsai, who previously helped open an uber-hip restaurant in LA. Pang serves baba-nyonya food, cuisine introduced to Malaysia by Chinese immigrants and frequently combining the two. At the colorful all-day affair with counter service, find thick-cut sweet toasts and Malaysian-style boiled egg in the morning and dishes like spicy stir-fried duck tongue and grilled fish cake heading toward lunch. Go for dessert; there are lots of sweet, bite-sized snacks like a coconut crepe available. Like at the original, both black coffee with ghee and Penang-style white coffee are on deck, too. Closed Wednesdays.

151 E Broadway, New York
NY 10002, United States

11. Manhatta

28 Liberty St, New York, NY 10005
Alex Staniloff

Hospitality titan Danny Meyer’s latest debut takes diners 60 floors above the Financial District, serving a three-course prix fixe menu alongside a pretty incredible view. Luxe dishes like peekytoe crab salad with poached leeks and artichokes; veal blanquette with wilted greens and mushrooms; and lobster quenelles with trumpet mushrooms and chervil make up the $78 menu from chef Jason Pfeifer. Expect expense accounters alongside tourists alongside Meyer fans.

28 Liberty St
New York, NY 10005

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