Alphabet City has always been a bit edgy and whatever your interests, Alphabet City will certainly enrich your experience of New York City. Here, we offer ten places to explore.
If you’re craving a New York bagel, you’re in for a treat. Stop by Tompkins Square Bagels for fresh bagels, cream cheese, and lox. Try some of their unusual cream cheese flavors like birthday cake, wasabi, or espresso. They also serve classic breakfast foods and sandwiches all day. Located right by the park, this is the perfect spot to get a bagel and coffee in the morning, or have a late afternoon snack and walk in the park.
One of the most iconic eateries in Alphabet City is Panna II. This Indian restaurant has a vibrant atmosphere and is perfect for group outings. Strings of red Christmas lights cover the entire ceiling, bathing the room in warm light. As you walk by Panna II on the street, you can even see the red lights through the windows.
Panna II, 93 1st Avenue, New York, NY, USA, +1 212 598 4610
The Community Gardens of Alphabet City are great places to think and relax. Situated in empty plots around the area and kept by local gardeners, these spots combine the virtue of community with the beauty of nature. The 9th Street Community Garden Park is the largest garden, but you can find smaller gardens by walking through the neighborhood and keeping an eye out for a bit of greenery.
Ninth Street Espresso only offers basic coffee and espresso drinks, which allows quality to take priority. They source and roast their coffee in Brooklyn, so coffee drinkers with refined tastes can take heart in the comfort of fresh, locally-sourced beans. It might not look like much from the outside, but the windows let light in, making this a bright spot for work or a coffee date.
Ninth Street Espresso, 700 East 9th Street, New York, NY, USA, +1 212 358 9225
UCB Theatre has launched the careers of popular comedians such as Amy Poehler, but it’s also a great place to start if you’re interested in becoming a comedian yourself. This comedy club features up-and-coming comedians, and also offers training for longform improvisation and sketch writing classes.
Open since 1973, the Nuyorican Poets Café has become a legendary spot in Alphabet City. The café presents artists and writers who work across a range of mediums, including poetry, visual arts and performing art. If you’re looking to perform, sign up for one of their open mic nights or poetry slams. Even if you don’t feel artistically inclined, the Nuyorican Poets Café is a great place to get inspired.
Nuyorican Poets Café, 236 East 3rd Street, New York, NY, USA, +1 212 505 8183