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The best Soho restaurants in NYC

Our selection of the best Soho restaurants NYC has to offer includes trusty favorites and the latest hot spots

Photograph: Noah Fecks

As one of America's most renowned shopping districts, Soho boasts some of the most luxurious, trendiest and quirkiest stores in NYC. And given how easy it is to work up an appetite after a day of perusing those window displays, the neighborhood is also home to some of the best restaurants in NYC. From Jamaican jerk chicken to standout pasta at Italian restaurants, here are the best Soho restaurants NYC has to offer.

RECOMMENDED: See the full guide to Soho, New York

Best Soho restaurants in NYC

Charlie Bird

Sipping wine out of a $60 Zalto stem is an activity typical of more formal surroundings, but at Charlie Bird, you swirl a smoky Rodano chianti riserva while nodding your head to the Notorious B.I.G. Devoted in equal measure to seasonal cooking and serious wine, this West Village spot roughs up its own polish with subtle hints of the street, like large graphic prints of boom boxes and the now-ubiquitous restaurant soundtrack of early-’90s hip-hop.

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Soho

The Dutch

From the moment it opened, Andrew Carmellini’s rollicking Soho eatery seemed destined to join the ranks of neighborhood classics like Balthazar and Blue Ribbon. The virtuoso chef offers diners an exuberant gastro-tour of the American melting pot, making stops in the barrio (supple and spicy tripe with avocado, diced radish and Fritos), New England (gorgeous picked crab in horseradish-infused tomato water) and even the Mexican border (a genuine 30-ingredient red mole). That all of it tastes good—and, somehow, works well together—explains why reservations are hard to come by.

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Soho

Dominique Ansel Bakery

Dominique Ansel honed his skills as executive pastry chef at Daniel for six years before opening this American and French patisserie. Caramelized croissants, miniature pastel meringues and madeleines make up the sweet selections at the counter. But the café also serves savory offerings, like roasted butternut squash soup and a pork club sandwich with pickled eggs, tomatoes and spicy mayo on sourdough.

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Soho

Alidoro

This old-school Italian sub shop—a Soho institution since 1986—was known as Melampo before an ownership change in 2001. Of the 40 plus-size grinders, crowd favorites include the Romeo: smoked chicken breast on Italian bread, slathered with Bel Paese (a semisoft Italian cheese) and hot-pepper dressing. Former owner Alessandro Gualandi was famous for his temper, and a bit of Gotham tude still prevails: A posted sign delineates the things you may not ask for (coffee, tomato sauce and bathrooms, among them), and regulars know to order their selections by name.

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Soho

Balthazar

Not only is the iconic Balthazar still trendy, but the kitchen rarely makes a false step. At dinner, the place is perennially packed with rail-thin lookers dressed to the nines. But the bread is great, the food is good, and the service is surprisingly friendly. The $99 three-tiered seafood platter casts the most impressive shadow of any dish in town. The frisée aux lardons is exemplary. Roasted chicken on mashed potatoes for two, délicieux. Skate with brown butter and capers, yum. Don’t hate the patrons because they’re beautiful; just join them.

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Soho

Blue Ribbon Sushi

Whether you settle on a $4 bowl of make-it-yourself miso soup and some California rolls, or opt for the top-of-the-line $125 chef’s choice sushi platter, you’ll find the service equally friendly and enthusiastic at this below-street-level Soho fave. The cooked dishes (like the miso-cured aged black cod) are worthy alternatives to the sushi, which, short of dining aboard a fishing vessel, is as fresh as it gets. Order a serving of the flawless green-tea crème brûlée to end your night on a high.

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Soho

Balaboosta

The word balaboosta connotes an endearing Jewish type: The homemaker who possesses just the right touch in everything—a true domestic goddess. Israeli chef-owner Einat Admony—also of the falafel joint Tam, and a veteran of the kitchens at Tabla, Danube, Patria and Bolo—embodies that multiplicity. She’s well versed in the ingredients of India, Europe, South America and of course, her native Middle East, combining them in dishes—some great, some not, most daring—at this latest venture. The tin-paneled room, furnished like a home library, its shelves lined with books and tchotchkes, takes far fewer risks than the menu.

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Nolita

Jack's Wife Freda

Keith McNally protégé Dean Jankelowitz (Schiller's, Pastis, Balthazar) is behind this morning-to-evening café. The 40-seat restaurant—sporting dark-green leather banquettes, brass railings and marble counters—serves homey fare, like Jankelowitz's grandmother's matzo ball soup made with duck fat, a skirt steak sandwich served alongside hand-cut fries, and piri-piri-hot-sauce-marinated chicken kebabs. In the morning, find Stumptown coffee, homemade croissants and full breakfast plates, including soft-boiled eggs with challah "soldiers" (strips).

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Nolita

Lure Fishbar

The retro yacht interior at this sexy subterranean restaurant might make you forget you’re docked in Soho. Hit the sushi bar to compare the flavors and textures of premium catches, or grab a table for a more extensive meal. Lure’s greatest achievement is its treatment of the classics. Dishes that have become rote at so many fish-focused eateries—seared yellowtail glazed in dashi, a lobster roll stuffed with sweetmeat—are executed here with the dazzling skill usually reserved for more ambitious menus.

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Soho

La Sirene

Fishing nets and posters of the Côte d’Azur may not entice you into this French bistro, but the exuberant cooking of Marseille-born chef-owner Didier Pawlicki should. The chef lavishes his mussels with curried cream and apples, and his garlicky, ruby-red slices of rare hanger steak are served with a sensuous trio of sides (carrot puree, potatoes au gratin in a cheesy veil, and a pot of zucchini flan). A dessert of fluffy profiteroles had us moaning—very French indeed.

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Comments

1 comments
Tami
Tami

Tell me about a restaurant called balabusta; i think on or near mulberry st.