Finding great restaurants to try in New York is one of my favourite things to do; now I’ve learned not to walk myself into the ground all day and save energy to go out at night! I’ve been to so many good places, but there are still plenty more on the list. Here are five downtown restaurants I highly recommend:

Clinton Street Baking Co. and Restaurant, 4 Clinton Street

Clinton Street Baking Co outside

Clinton Street inside

Clinton Street pancakes

This small and homely neighbourhood haunt serving up unpretentious and unfussy comfort food is probably best known for its brunch line-up – I’ll have the signature blueberry pancakes and buttermilk biscuit sandwich please! – but is also open for lunch and dinner. Yes, the pancakes are available all day long. Thanks for recommending it, Marissa!

The Butcher’s Daughter, 19 Kenmare Street




It’s hard to find a good lunch spot in Soho that isn’t rammed, so I’m glad a friend told me about this cool juice bar and café – perfect for a healthy boost mid-shopping session. I love its fresh and earthy looking interior and wholesome menu – Butcher’s Grilled Cheese sandwich: melted Cheddar, heirloom tomato, avocado, adzuki bacon, wilted basil on grilled sourdough? Yes please.

Hudson Clearwater, 44 Hudson Street





This is described as the West Village’s secret restaurant, but only because it looks like a boarded-up shopfront; not because it’s trying to keep a low profile. What you have to do is walk around the corner to find a green door. Go through it and you’ll discover this pretty restaurant just through a lovely courtyard garden.

Babbo, 110 Waverly Place



Apart from pizza, Italian food is never my top choice. I don’t know why. Perhaps it’s because I already make a good spaghetti Bolognese, but something’s making me want to find out what the fuss is about at this Mario Batali restaurant. Plus, it looks so inviting inside and, er, Beyonce and Jay-Z go here.

The Smile, 26 Bond Street

The Smile outside


I looked up this Nolita coffee house and restaurant after reading an interview with Naomi Watts in UK Elle which took place here. I can see why. This basement eatery looks perfect for disappearing into, has lots of tables in cosy corners and a really laid-back feel. The menu is rustic Mediterranean food (sweet potato and coconut soup, Moroccan lamb meatballs) or you can just come for coffee and something from the bakery (jam scones, avocado poppy bread, etc).

Have you tried any of these? Thoughts please!

(Photos via Choosing Raw, Vegan American Princess, Daniel Krieger via Veer NYC, The Coveted Man, New York Magazine)


  1. Not having visited New York yet I do enjoy reading about those places I have yet to visit – and After reading your post on the restaurants, The Smile sounds just the place I need to go when I do. Just sounds utterly delightful

    • EllieSeymour Reply

      Hi Linda – thanks for reading and I’m glad you found something useful in the post. I too can’t wait for a trip to The Smile – although am intrigued by the hidden Hudson Clearwater restaurant. I’ll be reviewing both very soon. Do you think you’ll make it to the city soon?

  2. Martin Ryan Reply

    Thanks so much for recommending Hudson Clearwater. We’ve just been for the first time and had an amazing dinner! The food is divine. We had a selection – green pea salad, red quinoa, asparagus salad, pan-seared gnocchi, lovely white fish… we highly recommend it too!

  3. That’s it. The Butcher’s Daughter will be my spot for tomorrow’s lunch! I really like your posts that list various restaurants in NYC. Even though I live here, I often have trouble deciding on a spot because there’s just so many . (not a bad problem to have I guess… lol) and I forget them quickly. Thanks for sharing!

    • How exciting. Let me know what you think. I found the menu quirky and didn’t know what to choose, but what I had was delicious and I felt really healthy after it. Again, thanks so much for your lovely comments. I’m quite jealous you have NY as your playground. Although Brighton and London are not so bad. But I think when you live somewhere, you can go to these places anytime, so take things for granted. On holiday, you have one shot to get it right so choosing well is important 🙂

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