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A sunny dining room with white tablecloth tables Photo: Nick Solares

20 Leisurely Weekday Lunch Spots Perfect for Lingering

Skip the wait at packed spots, try tasting menus at a lower price, and indulge with a drink

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There’s something luxurious about going out for a decadent weekday lunch: It can stretch on for hours, feels far more indulgent than a fast-casual salad eaten desk-side, and maybe involves a drink or two. Or dessert, at least. A leisurely lunch in the middle of the week might occur on a well-deserved day off (or “sick day”), for a lavish birthday meal, or, simply, to try a much-touted, no-reservations place that gets so damn packed at dinnertime. Another advantage is that some revered tasting menu-centric restaurants offer lunch at a relative discount. Whatever the occasion, the 20 places ahead span the gamut in terms of cuisine, price, and appeal for worthy destinations for a memorable Wednesday afternoon feast.

Note: This map is arranged geographically from north to south.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Flora Bar

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945 Madison Ave
New York, NY 10021
(646) 558-5383
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An elegant restaurant tucked inside the Met Breuer museum, Flora Bar (and its daytime cafe counterpart, Flora Coffee) come courtesy of the Estela team, Ignacio Mattos and Thomas Carter. A seafood- and vegetable-focused menu, with dishes like red shrimp with uni, lobster and crab dumplings in yuzu broth, and raw oysters with Sichuan mignonette, is served for lunch Tuesday through Friday. Don’t skip dessert, like an apple tart or Jerusalem artichoke and chocolate parfait, from rising star pastry chef Natasha Pickowicz, who splits her time between Flora Bar and Cafe Altro Paradiso downtown. For a much more casual option, Flora Coffee offers sandwiches like prosciutto cotto with butter and avocado, pickled carrots, and miso alongside an excellent pastry lineup, including sticky buns, sesame poundcake, and standout savory scones.

A sunny dining room flanked by floor-to-ceiling windows Photo by Nick Solares

2. Nougatine at Jean-Georges

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1 Central Park West
New York, NY 10023
(212) 299-3900
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At this posh, light-filled space, sample mega-chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s seafood-centric menu at a discount thanks to the three-course prix-fixe lunch for $38 — all while overlooking Central Park and Columbus Circle inside or at outdoor terrace seating. The menu includes a wide range of appetizers and entrees from the full a la carte offerings, like shrimp salad and black sea bass, as well as non-seafood choices like sweet pea soup or veal Milanese. Whatever happens, don’t skip the ethereal tuna tartare.

3. Le Bernardin

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155 W 51st St
New York, NY 10019
(212) 554-1515
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The most affordable way to enjoy Eric Ripert’s seafood masterpieces is via the three-course prix-fixe for $57, only served at lunch in the more casual lounge space flanking the dining room. Options include hamachi tartare with cucumber and lemon-citrus emulsion and poached skate with pickled shallots and sea beans, and $5 from each meal gets donated to City Harvest. Or, order a la carte from the lounge menu, which includes some of three-Michelin-starred Le Bernardin’s greatest hits, like Yellowfin tuna draped over foie gras-covered baguette slices. In the dining room, choose from a wider variety of options on the three-course prix-fixe for $90. By comparison, dinner starts at $160 for four courses.

Le Bernardin’s dining room has a floral arrangement in the middle with white flowers, plus tables with white tablecloths Photo: Daniel Krieger

4. The Grill

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5905, 99 E 52nd St
New York, NY 10022
(212) 375-9001
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One of the ultimate power lunch dens for the likes of Truman Capote, Henry Kissinger, and Jackie Kennedy Onassis while it housed the Four Seasons, this space got revamped by Major Food Group into the Grill (and its seafood-focused neighbor, the Pool). And, since June 2017, The Grill has been replicating its splashy lunchtime roots with an expense-account-worthy midday menu of salads, sandwiches, steaks and other carnivore-friendly fare, in a meticulously renovated, luxe room. Request one of the booths on the main level to see and be seen.

A man in a white tuxedo stands behind the bar at the Grill, in front of a giant arrangement of pink and red flowers Photo by Gary He

5. Dumpling Galaxy

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42-35 Main St
Flushing, NY 11355
(718) 461-0808
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Head to this critically acclaimed Flushing dumpling joint in Arcadia Mall for an astounding array of more than 100 varieties of well-tucked pouches. Fillings are both traditional — pork and chive — and unconventional — preserved egg with pine nuts — including sweet dessert versions. Don’t miss the lamb-based options, or the quirkier combinations of ingredients when choosing which to sample.

Dumpling Galaxy Photo via Dumpling Galaxy/Foursquare

6. Her Name is Han

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17 E 31st St
New York, NY 10016
(212) 779-9990
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Choose between a tight edit of Korean comfort food meals, comprised of a main like spicy raw blue crab, really excellent bulgogi, or braised short rib. It’s served alongside an assortment of side dishes like kimchi, yuzu-dressed cucumber salad, and bright pink potato salad. To truly feel OOO, try one of the affordable, prettily garnished cocktails or a glass of sowuju (fruit, like kiwi or grapefruit, infused with soju for over three months). Each midday spread is under $20; just note that it’s cash-only at lunchtime in the hip, wood- and brick-filled Koreatown space.

7. Momofuku Nishi

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232 8th Ave
New York, NY 10011
(646) 518-1919
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Linger over at bowl of the excellent, inventive cacio e pepe, made with fermented chickpea miso instead of cheese, at this Italian-Korean David Chang-owned spot. Momofuku Nishi in Chelsea got revamped in fall 2017, with the same chef, Joshua Pinsky, some new, more Italian menu items, and comfier seating. Other highlights include the capellini a la fideos (a pasta dish with clams), fried head-on shrimp, and the Caesar salad.

Fried head-on shrimp Robert Sietsema

8. Gramercy Tavern

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42 E 20th St
New York, NY 10003
(212) 477-0777
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Gramercy Tavern debuted in 1994, and decades later, it’s still a very important (and second-oldest) establishment in Danny Meyer’s portfolio of hits. At the city’s quintessential American restaurant, sample chef Michael Anthony’s elegant dishes, offered either in tasting menu format or a la carte, such as roasted lamb merguez with ricotta, grilled sourdough, and broccoli rabe. The white-tableclothed dining room feels more formal, takes reservations for lunch, and offers a la carte or a five-course tasting menu for $89 ($79 for a vegetarian menu), gratuity included. The more-casual tavern space next door is solely a la carte.

Gramercy Tavern
Gramercy Tavern
Photo: Daniel Krieger

9. Jeffrey's Grocery

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172 Waverly Pl
New York, NY 10014
(646) 398-7630
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A popular West Village spot from a local hit restaurateur that doesn’t take reservations, Jeffrey’s Grocery serves a seafood-centric menu from owner Gabriel Stulman (Fairfax, Simon & the Whale). Lunch offerings include a couple of egg dishes, if a languid Tuesday brunch is the objective, plus mains like crab and avocado toast and niçoise salad, plus a standout selection of raw bar items. The pretty, light-filled corner space is especially nice on a weekday afternoon.

10. Via Carota

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51 Grove St
New York, NY 10014

The first joint project between chef couple Rita Sodi (I Sodi) and Jody WIlliams (Buvette), Via Carota serves up a uniformly deeply enjoyable menu of Italian plates on a picturesque West Village street. Don’t miss the tagliatelle with prosciutto, peas, and parmesan; fried sardines; and grilled radicchio with goat cheese, pine nuts, and currants. Another highlight is the svizzerina, a bunless burger/steak tartare hybrid. The delightfully neighborhood place, with windows looking out on Grove Street, doesn’t take reservations, so a weekday afternoon might yield a shorter wait, or no wait whatsoever.

A white plate with pasta, piled with pink prosciutto and cheese Photo by Bill Addison

11. King

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18 King St
New York, NY 10014
(917) 825-1618
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Trio of friends Jess Shadbolt, Clare de Boer, and Annie Shi opened this seasonal Soho charmer in 2016 after meeting and gaining experience at London’s fabled River Cafe. Like at dinnertime, lunch in the corner room features a roster of Italian-French fare that rotates daily; options might include chicken paillard, fish stew, or duck confit.

A sunny dining room with white tablecloth tables Photo: Nick Solares

12. Sant Ambroeus

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265 Lafayette St
New York, NY 10012
(212) 966-2770
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Founded in 1936 in Milan, Sant Ambroeus serves up light, modern Italian fare in a chic, mid-century setting, including salads, panini, pastas, and crudos. There are a couple stylish, pink-bedecked Sant Ambroeus outposts in NYC (plus Southampton and Palm Beach locations), but the Soho one draws a particularly stylish crowd at lunch, especially on Fridays.

Sant Ambroeus Photo via Sant Ambroeus

13. Balthazar

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80 Spring St
New York, NY 10012
(212) 965-1414
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This Keith McNally institution opened in 1997 and has had a considerable impact on the city’s dining landscape. The sprawling French brasserie is filled with massive distressed mirrors, dark wood, and red banquettes. It’s a uniformly excellent menu; consider the Balthazar plateaux or chicken for two, and make sure to try something from the bakery at some point of the meal, or perhaps as a to-go dessert for later.

Balthazar’s grand dining room with a mirror in the back and gold lighting Photo by Nick Solares

14. Ivan Ramen

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25 Clinton St
New York, NY 10002
(646) 678-3859
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Expect innovative, consistently satisfying food at this Lower East Side ramen joint from Long Island native Ivan Orkin, who rose to fame via his two ramen shops in Tokyo. Opt for the deftly constructed shio or shoyo ramens, or, for a more decadent meal, try the triple pork, triple garlic mazemen or unconventional, lamb-filled take on Sichuan dan dan noodles. While Ivan Ramen takes reservations along with walk-ins, the vibe is usually more low-key at lunch, which can be had at any hour of the afternoon — it stays open starting at 12:30 p.m. daily (except Mondays, when it’s closed). Plus, the enclosed back garden seating area is sun-filled in the daytime.

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15. Peter Luger Steak House

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178 Broadway
Brooklyn, NY 11211
(718) 387-7400
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One of NYC’s most iconic dishes resides in this quintessential steakhouse: the porterhouse steak, served pre-sliced and in a pool of juice and butter, with a pitch-perfect char. Also consider the burger, which is served only at lunchtime, until 3:45 p.m. daily. The deeply flavorful patty is constructed from prime-grade chuck and dry-aged trimmings from those porterhouses and served simply on a bun. Skip the optional cheese to fully experience the quality of the meat.

Peter Luger’s hamburger with fries, on a white plate with blue markings Photo: Nick Solares

16. Roberta's

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261 Moore St
Brooklyn, NY 11206
(718) 417-1118
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There’s a certain charm at lunchtime at standout Bushwick restaurant Roberta’s, when diners can linger over a Speckenwolf pizza — mozzarella, speck, crimini mushroom, onion, oregano, black pepper — and some orange wine. The rest of the menu is rounded out with salads, meat plates, sandwiches, and pastas. Sit inside to watch the pizzas being made, or head to the outdoor space for some sunshine.

17. Harry's NYC

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1 Hanover Square
New York, NY 10004
(212) 785-9200
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The Wall Street steakhouse in members-only India House on Hanover Square has been around since 1972, opened by Harry and Adrienne Poulakakos and, since 2006, run by their son, Peter Poulakakos. While it’s still populated by suits having brisk power lunches, it’s a downtown institution with a handsome, clubby feel and very attentive service, and a recent renovation has kept it up with the times. Try one of the steaks on offer or the steak tartare, which is mixed tableside.

Harry’s NYC Photo via Harry’s NYC

18. Frankies 457 Spuntino

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457 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11231
(718) 403-0033
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Savor the rightfully popular cavatelli with hot sausage and browned sage butter in the middle of day without a wait at this Carroll Gardens spot that’s one of the city’s best pasta destinations. Besides its satisfying, brief roster of pasta dishes, Frankies 457 Spuntino also serves a light, flavorful eggplant parmigiana and tangy salads to cut the richer dishes, like a lemony, pecorino-topped fennel and celery root plate.

Frankies 457 cavatelli Photo via Foursquare

19. Al Di La

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1201, 248 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(718) 783-4565
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This enduring Park Slope favorite has whipped up top-notch northern Italian fare since 1998, like a spaghetti neri alla chitarra (housemade squid ink-tinted black strands with octopus confit) and braised rabbit. The cozy corner space — replete with mismatched antiques and a nonna’s house sort of vibe — is regularly packed, and with no reservations, a weekday lunch is the best time to really linger over a plate of pasta and glass of wine.

Al di la Photo via Foursquare

20. Bamboo Garden

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4703 6409 8th Avenue, 4703
Brooklyn, NY 11220
(718) 238-1122
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This excellent dim sum parlor in Sunset Park is one of the city’s finest. It closed in 2017 for a thorough renovation, and now sports a new gold and baby blue color scheme and sparkly, Vegas-like vibes. Luckily the same excellent, often innovative dishes such as pig custard buns and giant soup dumplings are still rolled out post-revamp, and the crowds are thinner for weekday lunch — or breakfast, considering Bamboo Garden opens at 8 a.m. on weekdays.

Shrimp rice noodle rolls on a white plate inundated with dark soy sauce. Robert Sietsema

1. Flora Bar

945 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10021
A sunny dining room flanked by floor-to-ceiling windows Photo by Nick Solares

An elegant restaurant tucked inside the Met Breuer museum, Flora Bar (and its daytime cafe counterpart, Flora Coffee) come courtesy of the Estela team, Ignacio Mattos and Thomas Carter. A seafood- and vegetable-focused menu, with dishes like red shrimp with uni, lobster and crab dumplings in yuzu broth, and raw oysters with Sichuan mignonette, is served for lunch Tuesday through Friday. Don’t skip dessert, like an apple tart or Jerusalem artichoke and chocolate parfait, from rising star pastry chef Natasha Pickowicz, who splits her time between Flora Bar and Cafe Altro Paradiso downtown. For a much more casual option, Flora Coffee offers sandwiches like prosciutto cotto with butter and avocado, pickled carrots, and miso alongside an excellent pastry lineup, including sticky buns, sesame poundcake, and standout savory scones.

945 Madison Ave
New York, NY 10021

2. Nougatine at Jean-Georges

1 Central Park West, New York, NY 10023

At this posh, light-filled space, sample mega-chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s seafood-centric menu at a discount thanks to the three-course prix-fixe lunch for $38 — all while overlooking Central Park and Columbus Circle inside or at outdoor terrace seating. The menu includes a wide range of appetizers and entrees from the full a la carte offerings, like shrimp salad and black sea bass, as well as non-seafood choices like sweet pea soup or veal Milanese. Whatever happens, don’t skip the ethereal tuna tartare.

1 Central Park West
New York, NY 10023

3. Le Bernardin

155 W 51st St, New York, NY 10019
Le Bernardin’s dining room has a floral arrangement in the middle with white flowers, plus tables with white tablecloths Photo: Daniel Krieger

The most affordable way to enjoy Eric Ripert’s seafood masterpieces is via the three-course prix-fixe for $57, only served at lunch in the more casual lounge space flanking the dining room. Options include hamachi tartare with cucumber and lemon-citrus emulsion and poached skate with pickled shallots and sea beans, and $5 from each meal gets donated to City Harvest. Or, order a la carte from the lounge menu, which includes some of three-Michelin-starred Le Bernardin’s greatest hits, like Yellowfin tuna draped over foie gras-covered baguette slices. In the dining room, choose from a wider variety of options on the three-course prix-fixe for $90. By comparison, dinner starts at $160 for four courses.

155 W 51st St
New York, NY 10019

4. The Grill

5905, 99 E 52nd St, New York, NY 10022
A man in a white tuxedo stands behind the bar at the Grill, in front of a giant arrangement of pink and red flowers Photo by Gary He

One of the ultimate power lunch dens for the likes of Truman Capote, Henry Kissinger, and Jackie Kennedy Onassis while it housed the Four Seasons, this space got revamped by Major Food Group into the Grill (and its seafood-focused neighbor, the Pool). And, since June 2017, The Grill has been replicating its splashy lunchtime roots with an expense-account-worthy midday menu of salads, sandwiches, steaks and other carnivore-friendly fare, in a meticulously renovated, luxe room. Request one of the booths on the main level to see and be seen.

5905, 99 E 52nd St
New York, NY 10022

5. Dumpling Galaxy

42-35 Main St, Flushing, NY 11355
Dumpling Galaxy Photo via Dumpling Galaxy/Foursquare

Head to this critically acclaimed Flushing dumpling joint in Arcadia Mall for an astounding array of more than 100 varieties of well-tucked pouches. Fillings are both traditional — pork and chive — and unconventional — preserved egg with pine nuts — including sweet dessert versions. Don’t miss the lamb-based options, or the quirkier combinations of ingredients when choosing which to sample.

42-35 Main St
Flushing, NY 11355

6. Her Name is Han

17 E 31st St, New York, NY 10016
Read Review |

Choose between a tight edit of Korean comfort food meals, comprised of a main like spicy raw blue crab, really excellent bulgogi, or braised short rib. It’s served alongside an assortment of side dishes like kimchi, yuzu-dressed cucumber salad, and bright pink potato salad. To truly feel OOO, try one of the affordable, prettily garnished cocktails or a glass of sowuju (fruit, like kiwi or grapefruit, infused with soju for over three months). Each midday spread is under $20; just note that it’s cash-only at lunchtime in the hip, wood- and brick-filled Koreatown space.

17 E 31st St
New York, NY 10016

7. Momofuku Nishi

232 8th Ave, New York, NY 10011
Read Review |
Fried head-on shrimp Robert Sietsema

Linger over at bowl of the excellent, inventive cacio e pepe, made with fermented chickpea miso instead of cheese, at this Italian-Korean David Chang-owned spot. Momofuku Nishi in Chelsea got revamped in fall 2017, with the same chef, Joshua Pinsky, some new, more Italian menu items, and comfier seating. Other highlights include the capellini a la fideos (a pasta dish with clams), fried head-on shrimp, and the Caesar salad.

232 8th Ave
New York, NY 10011

8. Gramercy Tavern

42 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003
Gramercy Tavern
Gramercy Tavern
Photo: Daniel Krieger

Gramercy Tavern debuted in 1994, and decades later, it’s still a very important (and second-oldest) establishment in Danny Meyer’s portfolio of hits. At the city’s quintessential American restaurant, sample chef Michael Anthony’s elegant dishes, offered either in tasting menu format or a la carte, such as roasted lamb merguez with ricotta, grilled sourdough, and broccoli rabe. The white-tableclothed dining room feels more formal, takes reservations for lunch, and offers a la carte or a five-course tasting menu for $89 ($79 for a vegetarian menu), gratuity included. The more-casual tavern space next door is solely a la carte.

42 E 20th St
New York, NY 10003

9. Jeffrey's Grocery

172 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10014

A popular West Village spot from a local hit restaurateur that doesn’t take reservations, Jeffrey’s Grocery serves a seafood-centric menu from owner Gabriel Stulman (Fairfax, Simon & the Whale). Lunch offerings include a couple of egg dishes, if a languid Tuesday brunch is the objective, plus mains like crab and avocado toast and niçoise salad, plus a standout selection of raw bar items. The pretty, light-filled corner space is especially nice on a weekday afternoon.

172 Waverly Pl
New York, NY 10014

10. Via Carota

51 Grove St, New York, NY 10014
A white plate with pasta, piled with pink prosciutto and cheese Photo by Bill Addison

The first joint project between chef couple Rita Sodi (I Sodi) and Jody WIlliams (Buvette), Via Carota serves up a uniformly deeply enjoyable menu of Italian plates on a picturesque West Village street. Don’t miss the tagliatelle with prosciutto, peas, and parmesan; fried sardines; and grilled radicchio with goat cheese, pine nuts, and currants. Another highlight is the svizzerina, a bunless burger/steak tartare hybrid. The delightfully neighborhood place, with windows looking out on Grove Street, doesn’t take reservations, so a weekday afternoon might yield a shorter wait, or no wait whatsoever.

51 Grove St
New York, NY 10014

11. King

18 King St, New York, NY 10014
A sunny dining room with white tablecloth tables Photo: Nick Solares

Trio of friends Jess Shadbolt, Clare de Boer, and Annie Shi opened this seasonal Soho charmer in 2016 after meeting and gaining experience at London’s fabled River Cafe. Like at dinnertime, lunch in the corner room features a roster of Italian-French fare that rotates daily; options might include chicken paillard, fish stew, or duck confit.

18 King St
New York, NY 10014

12. Sant Ambroeus

265 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012
Sant Ambroeus Photo via Sant Ambroeus

Founded in 1936 in Milan, Sant Ambroeus serves up light, modern Italian fare in a chic, mid-century setting, including salads, panini, pastas, and crudos. There are a couple stylish, pink-bedecked Sant Ambroeus outposts in NYC (plus Southampton and Palm Beach locations), but the Soho one draws a particularly stylish crowd at lunch, especially on Fridays.

265 Lafayette St
New York, NY 10012

13. Balthazar

80 Spring St, New York, NY 10012
Balthazar’s grand dining room with a mirror in the back and gold lighting Photo by Nick Solares

This Keith McNally institution opened in 1997 and has had a considerable impact on the city’s dining landscape. The sprawling French brasserie is filled with massive distressed mirrors, dark wood, and red banquettes. It’s a uniformly excellent menu; consider the Balthazar plateaux or chicken for two, and make sure to try something from the bakery at some point of the meal, or perhaps as a to-go dessert for later.

80 Spring St
New York, NY 10012

14. Ivan Ramen

25 Clinton St, New York, NY 10002
Read Review |

Expect innovative, consistently satisfying food at this Lower East Side ramen joint from Long Island native Ivan Orkin, who rose to fame via his two ramen shops in Tokyo. Opt for the deftly constructed shio or shoyo ramens, or, for a more decadent meal, try the triple pork, triple garlic mazemen or unconventional, lamb-filled take on Sichuan dan dan noodles. While Ivan Ramen takes reservations along with walk-ins, the vibe is usually more low-key at lunch, which can be had at any hour of the afternoon — it stays open starting at 12:30 p.m. daily (except Mondays, when it’s closed). Plus, the enclosed back garden seating area is sun-filled in the daytime.

25 Clinton St
New York, NY 10002

15. Peter Luger Steak House

178 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Peter Luger’s hamburger with fries, on a white plate with blue markings Photo: Nick Solares

One of NYC’s most iconic dishes resides in this quintessential steakhouse: the porterhouse steak, served pre-sliced and in a pool of juice and butter, with a pitch-perfect char. Also consider the burger, which is served only at lunchtime, until 3:45 p.m. daily. The deeply flavorful patty is constructed from prime-grade chuck and dry-aged trimmings from those porterhouses and served simply on a bun. Skip the optional cheese to fully experience the quality of the meat.

178 Broadway
Brooklyn, NY 11211

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16. Roberta's

261 Moore St, Brooklyn, NY 11206
Read Review |

There’s a certain charm at lunchtime at standout Bushwick restaurant Roberta’s, when diners can linger over a Speckenwolf pizza — mozzarella, speck, crimini mushroom, onion, oregano, black pepper — and some orange wine. The rest of the menu is rounded out with salads, meat plates, sandwiches, and pastas. Sit inside to watch the pizzas being made, or head to the outdoor space for some sunshine.

261 Moore St
Brooklyn, NY 11206

17. Harry's NYC

1 Hanover Square, New York, NY 10004
Harry’s NYC Photo via Harry’s NYC

The Wall Street steakhouse in members-only India House on Hanover Square has been around since 1972, opened by Harry and Adrienne Poulakakos and, since 2006, run by their son, Peter Poulakakos. While it’s still populated by suits having brisk power lunches, it’s a downtown institution with a handsome, clubby feel and very attentive service, and a recent renovation has kept it up with the times. Try one of the steaks on offer or the steak tartare, which is mixed tableside.

1 Hanover Square
New York, NY 10004

18. Frankies 457 Spuntino

457 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Frankies 457 cavatelli Photo via Foursquare

Savor the rightfully popular cavatelli with hot sausage and browned sage butter in the middle of day without a wait at this Carroll Gardens spot that’s one of the city’s best pasta destinations. Besides its satisfying, brief roster of pasta dishes, Frankies 457 Spuntino also serves a light, flavorful eggplant parmigiana and tangy salads to cut the richer dishes, like a lemony, pecorino-topped fennel and celery root plate.

457 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11231

19. Al Di La

1201, 248 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Al di la Photo via Foursquare

This enduring Park Slope favorite has whipped up top-notch northern Italian fare since 1998, like a spaghetti neri alla chitarra (housemade squid ink-tinted black strands with octopus confit) and braised rabbit. The cozy corner space — replete with mismatched antiques and a nonna’s house sort of vibe — is regularly packed, and with no reservations, a weekday lunch is the best time to really linger over a plate of pasta and glass of wine.

1201, 248 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215

20. Bamboo Garden

4703 6409 8th Avenue, 4703, Brooklyn, NY 11220
Shrimp rice noodle rolls on a white plate inundated with dark soy sauce. Robert Sietsema

This excellent dim sum parlor in Sunset Park is one of the city’s finest. It closed in 2017 for a thorough renovation, and now sports a new gold and baby blue color scheme and sparkly, Vegas-like vibes. Luckily the same excellent, often innovative dishes such as pig custard buns and giant soup dumplings are still rolled out post-revamp, and the crowds are thinner for weekday lunch — or breakfast, considering Bamboo Garden opens at 8 a.m. on weekdays.

4703 6409 8th Avenue, 4703
Brooklyn, NY 11220

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