Best rooftop restaurants NYC families will love

Need some dinner inspiration? The best rooftop restaurants NYC families love offer something for everyone!
Photograph: Courtesy Keith MacDonald
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When it comes to dining out in New York, the view is just as important as the food. Why not enjoy great scenes and fantastic dishes at the best rooftop restaurants NYC has to offer?

When it comes to these locations, everyone in your family will find a dish to devour—fresh seafood, classic sandwiches, fan-favorites like mac n' cheese. What else is on the menu? Park views, mini golf and so much more. Thanks to the best rooftop restaurants, NYC will certainly keep busy all season long. 

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to outdoor activities for kids in NYC

Looking for more things to do in NYC? We have plenty of ideas for a family outing. Enjoy these kids attractions, get the whole crew involved in some fun summer activities or watch one of these family movies

 

Best rooftop restaurants NYC families will love

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Photograph: Courtesy Whole Foods Market
Shopping, Grocery stores

The Roof at Whole Foods Market

icon-location-pin Gowanus

Your family’s dining experience at Whole Foods isn’t limited to samples. Make sure to head up to The Roof, an affiliated bar and restaurant that sits above the store. You’ll get great views of Gowanus and Carroll Gardens, plus it serves American fare such burgers ($12), hot dogs ($9) and chicken tenders ($9). Added bonus? You can actually bring food upstairs from Whole Foods’ hot buffet. Kids under 10 can pick a mini-version of a classic dish for $5. Plus, picnic table seating makes this one of the best rooftop restaurants NYC offers. 

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Photo: Caroline Voagen Nelson
Restaurants, Seafood

Brooklyn Crab

icon-location-pin Red Hook

If you’ve worked up an appetite exploring the labyrinth that is IKEA, walk a few blocks to Brooklyn Crab instead of downing Swedish Meatballs. We know, we know—it's not a traditional "rooftop," but we're going to count it as as one just because there are multiple places to grab a bite up high(and because we love it). Enjoy crispy popcorn shrimp ($13) fish and chips ($21) and and yummy sides like fries ($6) to fill little bellies, plus adult entrees like the dungeness crab ($38) and snow crab ($32). There’s a huge deck with picnic tables overlooking the Red Hook Channel and Hudson River, plus there’s 18-hole mini golf out back, so obviously Brooklyn Crab deserves a spot on our roundup of the best rooftop restaurants NYC families love.

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Photograph: Noah Devereaux
Bars, Beer bars

SERRA by Birreria

icon-location-pin Flatiron

Eataly's new greenhouse pop-up, located 14 stories above the Italian megastore, includes views of the Flatiron and Empire State Buildings while families chow down on authentic eats—always a plus for those in search of the best rooftop restaurants NYC offers. If you have picky eaters, the cheese and cured meat plate are probably your best bet (just call sopressata and mortadella pepperoni and they'll happily nibble away)! Enjoy pastas, cheeses and all the lovely dishes Eataly is known for—and of course, don't forget dessert (hello tiramisu)! 

Brooklyn Ball Factory

Looking to introduce your kids to some Japanese cuisine?  This casual eatery and coffee spot in Williamsburg is an ideal bright brunch or lunch spot that features a cozy rooftop dining space with cafe-style tables. There’s also a bright picnic table dining area on the first floor in the atrium space. You or your kiddo can nosh on meatball mini burgers ($4.50) which are infused with homemade apple soy sauce. There’s also a selection of bentos, curries and sandwiches ($8.50-$12.50) to suit any taste. 95 Montrose Avenue, Brooklyn (718-387-5296, bkballfactory.com).

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Fornino at Brooklyn Bridge Park

Who doesn’t love a delicious Fornino wood-fired pizza? Thanks to this Brooklyn hotspot, your family can enjoy some treats while taking in sunset views of the Statue of Liberty and lower Manhattan—scenes that make the locale one of the best rooftop restaurants NYC could hope for. Fornino has a beautiful rooftop dining space featuring raised wooden tables. Snag one with an umbrella for those extra sunny days. Be sure to try one of their famous pies like the Lombardi for $16 (which includes mozzarella, wild arugula, prosciutto and shaved parmigiano) or the Al Roker for $16 (tomato, mozzarella, fontina, caramelized onion, roasted pepper, sopressata). Forino also serves breakfast sandwiches and toasts (with an Italian flare, of course) that feature ingredients such as ricotta, pancetta and prosciutto). Don't forget about the salads and hot and cold lunch sandwiches. Pier 6, Brooklyn Bridge Park, Brooklyn (718-422-1107, fornino.com).

Restaurants, Sandwich shops

'wichcraft

icon-location-pin Flatiron

‘Wichcraft is one of the best options for a quick lunch, and in this case a nice view! The restaurant offers tasty bites for the kiddos like the cheese melt with aged cheddar ($8) fruit salad ($5.50) and a selection of bagels, croissants and brownies ($2-$3.50). Grownups won’t want to miss out on savory meals like the Cuban Pork sandwich (gruyere and slow-roasted pork $11.50). For something a little healthier you can try one of their tasty grain bowls ($10.50-$11.50). Be sure to take advantage of the roof deck, located on the second level. There you’ll find outdoor dining tables as well as bench-style seating ideal for the kids.

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Bars, Cocktail bars

Northern Territory

icon-location-pin Greenpoint

Named after Australia's topmost tip, this brick-walled Down Under pub from the Berry Park team features a rooftop bar for warm-weather noshing (and maybe a little boozing for mom and dad). The kitchen turns out pub grub like fish & chips ($14), burgers ($16) and a variety of delicious grilled skewers ($7–$9), allowing families to fill their bellies while taking in killer views of the Manhattan skyline. Beat the happy hour crowd and grab an early bite—kids aren't allowed after 8pm on Fridays and Saturdays.

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl
Bars, Sports Bars

Berry Park

icon-location-pin Greenpoint

This bi-level behemoth beer hall has a 3,500-square-foot ground floor and a roof deck almost as large. Avoid bringing little ones on Friday and Saturday nights after 6pm when it's extremely busy with the bar crowd, but kids will love having their dinner of mac & cheese ($13), a burger ($14) or a giant Bavarian pretzel ($6) while taking in amazing views of Manhattan and McCarren Park at sunset.

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Restaurants, Mexican

Alma

icon-location-pin Carroll Gardens

A popular destination on Columbia Street’s restaurant row, three-story Alma serves fancy regional Mexican food in a giddy, casual atmosphere. Although the ground floor bar and midlevel dining room are pleasant, diners clamor for a seat on the rooftop patio (open year-round) for inspiring views of the Manhattan skyline and the glittering, accidental beauty of cargo-loaders below. The food ranges from old standards (fresh, cilantro-heavy salsa and creamily addictive guac) to sophisticated dishes like huachinango a la naranja, a red snapper with orange sauce, which is as airy and light as the view.

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