10 New York Restaurants For The Perfect Instagram Shots

Pizza Margherita | © Wikipedia Commons
Pizza Margherita | © Wikipedia Commons
Photo of Dana deLaski
23 April 2018

Whether you like it not, some restaurants and even some particular dishes are undeniably Insta-famous. People flock to certain places from all over because they saw the most perfect avocado toast on Instagram or because they want to get their shot of a giant ice cream cone. Sometimes, you buy things and eat them for the sake of ‘likes,’ but that doesn’t mean it’s any less delicious. So if you’re a social media fiend in need of some new content, here’s a list of places that serve Insta-worthy food.


Ice Cream Parlour, Restaurant, Asian, Dessert, Contemporary
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Taiyaki NYC
Taiyaki NYC | Courtesy of Taiyaki NYC

NYC’s newest Instagram sensation is Taiyaki – an ice cream shop in Chinatown serving some slightly fishy dessert. The word ‘taiyaki’ actually refers to the Japanese cake the ice cream is served in, and though it’s shaped liked a fish, the taste couldn’t be further from it. It’s essentially a buttery cake with a mild flavor, and they’re filling it with soft serve. This quirky, kitschy cone is delicious – and more likely than not for New Yorkers, it’s probably taking over your Instagram feed.

Two Hands

Bar, Cafe, Restaurant, Australian, $$$
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For a mid-morning meal that won’t weigh you down, try Two Hands, a Pinterest-perfect cafe serving up light fare. Ricotta-topped banana bread, bacon and egg avocado toast, and loaded acai bowls round out the cafe’s menu of feel-good food. With its friendly staff, high-quality coffee, and sun-soaked interior, Two Hands is sure to warm up your weekends.


Pizzeria, Restaurant, Bakery, Italian, $$$
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Arguably NYC’s most popular pizza place, Roberta’s is also its most Instagrammed. Even though there are hundreds, probably thousands of places to eat pizza in NYC, an Instagram photo of a Roberta’s pizza pie is unmistakable. Though they now have an outpost in Midtown, Manhattan, the original Brooklyn location is one of the toughest restaurants to get into (expect to wait, maybe for hours), so if you manage to get in and post a photo, you’re sure to induce envy amongst followers.

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Ivan Ramen

Restaurant, Japanese, American, $$$
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Ramen | © takedahrs / Pixabay

No food-lover’s Instagram feed is complete without a picture of ramen noodles being lifted from the bowl, and some of the prettiest and most delicious noodles in NYC can be found at Ivan Ramen. Ivan Ramen is owned by Iran Orkin – a Jewish kid from Long Island who moved to Tokyo, starting making ramen, and somehow became a huge hit back home. He now has a ramen restaurant on the Lower East Side, and it’s one of the best noodle spots around.

Here's to not-sad-desk lunches. 📷: @noleftovers #forkyeah

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Shake Shack

Restaurant, Bar, American, Fast Food, $$$
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If you haven’t posted a photo of Shake Shack‘ s delectable burgers and fries artfully arranged on a tray, have you even been to NYC? Shake Shack has been around for over a decade now and is known as one of the best cheap eats you can find in the city. The lines are long but the payoff is huge – this is an iconic NYC institution that every visitor should try. There are now locations all over the world, but the original location is Madison Square Park is still the classic choice.

Three's company. Photo by @fromuyenwithlove. #shakeshack

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Emmy Squared

Restaurant, Italian, $$$
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Margarita Pizza at Emmy Squared in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York.
The margarita pizza at Emmy Squared in Williamsburg is one must-order. | © Emmy Squared
It’s true that New Yorkers love New York-style pizza, but lately something new his has hit the scene. Since opening in early 2016, the Detroit style pizza at Emmy Squared has stolen hearts and completely taken over Instagram feeds. This thick (but not too thick) square slice is sinfully delicious, and it’s so tough to get in you’ll need to take a picture just to prove your presence.

Ice & Vice

Ice Cream Parlour, Dessert Shop, Bakery, Dessert, $$$
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Seasonal Flavors
Ice & Vice's flavors are almost like an entire meal, squeezed into a single scoop of ice cream | © Ice & Vice
Facts are facts – if you Instagram an ice cream cone, the likes will roll in. That said, if you Instagram an ice cream cone topped with an ice cream sandwich made with donuts like the ones from Ice & Vice, you may see an unprecedented surge in likes. Ice & Vice is an ‘experimental ice cream shop’ in the Lower East Side, so if you’re looking to satisfy a craving for wacky ice cream flavors, a flavored cone, an ice cream sandwich, and a donut all in one go (because we’ve had that craving, right?), this is your place.


Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
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Everyone loves tacos, but if you’re an Instagrammer looking for aesthetically pleasing tacos, Tacombi is your place. It now has a few locations around NYC, and each one is open, light, and full of brightly colored decor – the ideal setting for that perfect shot. And while of course you can’t go wrong with a picture of the tacos themselves, Tacombi is unique in that the space itself is just as worthy of a ‘gram.

Black Seed Bagels

Restaurant, Butcher, Bakery, North American, American, Canadian, $$$
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Another food you must eat in NYC is a bagel, and while you can find them almost anywhere, some of the most Instagrammable are at Black Seed Bagels. Admittedly, the bagels here are small (they’re ‘Montreal style’), but they’re crazy delicious. Keep it simple or order up one of their truly amazing gourmet sandwiches, but either way don’t forget to snap a pic of the fillings before you take a bite.


Restaurant, Japanese, $$$
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For something totally unexpected, head to Okonomi for the most visually pleasing breakfast you can find. Maybe even better than a fork cracking an egg to create #yolkporn, Okonomi serves a truly beautiful Japanese breakfast that demands to be photographed. The meal is simple and traditional – roasted fish and vegetables, miso soup, rice, and egg – and it will re-invent what you thought a balanced breakfast could be.

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