The 10 Best Restaurants on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, New York City

Photo of Julia Goicochea
18 September 2018

Once a hub for immigrants, the Manhattan’s Lower East Side is no stranger to diversity as evident by the exciting variety of restaurants, bars, and businesses populating the area today. The neighborhood attracts a mixed crowd of locals, gallery goers, and barhopping revelers, all of whom can find their own perfect restaurant nearby. Honoring its vibrant and varied spirit, here are 10 of the best restaurants on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.

The Fat Radish

Restaurant, American, British, $$$
The Fat Radish | © Silkstone
Sourcing ingredients from the tri-state area community, this farm-to-table restaurant marries English cuisine and local flavor. The health-conscious menu features creative offerings such as seasonal veggie pot pie, duck fat chips, and light yet satisfying chicken and fish plates. With its warm interior, generous portions, and obvious passion for its product, The Fat Radish invites New Yorkers to celebrate cuisine and community.


Restaurant, Healthy, $$$

Health-food haven Dimes specializes in fresh, filling dishes that are as pleasing to the body as they are to the eye. With its colorful acai and pitaya bowls, hearty nori wraps, and whole fish dinners, this trendy Chinatown spot makes healthy eating fun for even the most devoted junk food enthusiasts. For those celebrating ‘5 o’clock somewhere,’ be sure to sample the popular wheatgrass margarita made with tequila, wheatgrass, and lime.

Clinton Street Baking Company

Restaurant, American, $$$
Brunch at Clinton Street Baking Company in East Village, New York, USA. | © Mark Weinberg
Known mostly for its crowd-pleasing breakfast menu, Clinton Street Baking Company also boasts exciting lunch and dinner options. From classic cheeseburgers to more adventurous dishes like fresh fish tacos and flavorful queso mac and cheese, this American restaurant offers something for everyone (as proven by its similarly successful locations in Tokyo and Dubai).

Cafe Katja

Cafe, Gastropub, Charcuterie, Restaurant, Austrian, European, German, Pub Grub, $$$
Cafe Katja offers lower east side diners a culinary passport to Austria, serving up authentic ethnic staples like bratwurst, goulash, and extra-large soft pretzels. The popular charcuterie and sausage sampler plates pair well with the restaurant’s impressive stock of Central European beers and wines. Its low lighting, cozy environment, and efficient service make this cultural enclave a great spot for an intimate dinner or adventurous date.

Sweet Chick

Restaurant, American, $$$
Fried Chicken and Waffle Sandwich at Sweet Chick | © Sunshine Sachs
Creative chicken and waffle flavor combinations, Sweet Chick’s claim to fame, are only one of the restaurant’s rave-worthy offerings. The daring team behind this American restaurant delivers refreshing, imaginative twists on familiar dishes, including duck sloppy joes, vegetarian meatloaf, and black bean cake. The restaurant’s playful menu, relaxed atmosphere, and friendly service ensure that every visit is a sweet one.

Tiny’s Giant Sandwich Shop

Cafe, Restaurant, American, $$$
For over a decade, Tiny’s Giant Sandwich Shop has been supplying the Lower East Side with filling and exciting lunch options. Catering to vegetarians and meat-lovers alike, the menu at this coffee shop-cum-restaurant includes inventive selections such as the spicy turkey melt sandwich and the fan-favorite veggie burger. Offering wifi, fresh customizable salads, and an eclectic beverage menu, this longstanding establishment continues to be a popular neighborhood spot.

Yonah Schimmel’s Knish Bakery

Bakery, European
Baked Cheesecake
Baked Cheesecake | © zingyyellow...!/Flickr
For smaller appetites, the namesake dish at Yonah Schimmel’s Knish Bakery comes in a variety of classic flavors. Standing since 1910, the establishment has perfected Eastern European staples such as potato latkes, hearty borscht soup, and kugel. Share in the city’s history, and treat yourself to a delicious snack today.

Still got some time to burn in New York? Read our guide to the best things to do in New York.

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