In New York City, everyday activities can be elevated, literally, on the city's many public rooftops—just take the best rooftop restaurants in NYC for proof. Whether it's taking a break at one of the city's best garden terraces, grabbing a bite at one of its amazing outdoor bars, or having a sky-high meal, it's hard not to have a good time when you're surrounded by stunning skyline views. From Williamsburg to Chelsea, eat your heart out at the best rooftop restaurants NYC has to offer.
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Best rooftop restaurants in NYC
After you’ve sat on a roof and eaten April Bloomfield’s cult-favorite tacos, including Berkshire pork carnitas with avocado salsa, you can basically die happy. For the full experience, order from the to-go menu on the ground floor, where Salvation’s main dining room is, and then head up to the 17th-floor terrace. (Right now, all that’s available are drinks and snacks.) The deck is narrow and cozy, with plenty of warm redbrick and a whimsical black-and-white–striped awning over the bar. Heaven.
This dreamy, overgrown rooftop restaurant and bar just south of Hell’s Kitchen sits atop a warehouse that operates as the McKittrick Hotel for the trailblazing theater performance Sleep No More. In the early evening, the height affords a regal view of gleaming West Side buildings and the cloud-streaked horizon. But as the sun descends over the Hudson, lights encircling small trees and the rafters overhead blink to life. The place is helplessly romantic, but in a way that never feels saccharine (the name of the bar, after all, is borrowed from the famous Scottish field where six 17th-century “witches” were hanged and burned).
A popular destination on Columbia Street’s restaurant row, the 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 bone-in grilled pork chop marinated in an ancho chile sauce, which is as bold and dramatic as the view.
Bearing all the hallmarks of the nouveau bistro—rust-dappled mirrors, tiny tables, insanely good-looking diners, a noise level that exceeds a racket—Juliette still manages a few pleasant surprises. The wine list is crammed with bargains, and the kitchen pulls off some pretty neat tricks, too. But we recommend you head straight to Juliette's pretty roof deck (open in April) to enjoy dishes like crispy duck confit and grilled hanger steak.
The Gerber Group’s latest project is this 15th-floor gastropub that crowns the Hotel Indigo. Barkeep Nico Szymanski slings festive punch-style pours and pre-bottled elixirs like the eponymous Mr. Purple (Casamigos reposado tequila, apple juice, allspice dram) and the Bottled Sparkling Negroni (carbonated Bombay Sapphire, Campari and vermouth). From the kitchen, offerings range from a crispy gruyere-and-cheddar panini to a trio of flatbread options. The space is fitted with rows of communal tables, reclaimed-wood rafters and industrial pipes. During warm months, revelry sprawls across two terraces sporting a swimming pool and 6,000 square feet of panoramic outdoor space.
Hotel maven André Balazs has opened a series of upper-level venues in his trendy Meatpacking hotel, The Standard, High Line. This one, on the 18th floor, offers 360-degree views (a sunken bar and banquette seating allow for nearly unobstructed sight lines), along with two outdoor terraces, one of which has a glass floor that looks down to the street below. Note to the hungry: Along with cocktails and tea, a menu of small bites is served all day.
Top Chef toque Tom Colicchio joined forces with with Sisha Ortuzar (Gramercy Tavern) to open this New American restaurant. In the kitchen, Chef Andrew Smith oversees dishes like baby octopus (chorizo, lemon, garlic aioli), Berkshire pork chops (Tokyo turnips, apple, mustard jus) and PCocoa-spiced duck breasts (baby fennel, citrus, chiles). Guests can settle into seats near the expansive floor-to-ceiling windows, which provide views of the East River. In warmer months, the patio also offers an impressive vista.
On top of midtown’s neon-purple–lit Yotel Hotel comes this equally colorful rooftop bar from partner Gil Rubenstein (the Rooftop Bar at the Library Hotel), a 1960s-inspired lounge fitted with rainbow-hued circle chairs, exotic dragon trees and a yarn installation from Brooklyn-based artist London Kaye. Guests can sink into basket-weave sofas on the 7,000-square-foot terrace for summery, globally flitting cocktails like a fig caipirinha, a rosewater martini or a tiki-lite Tropical Triple (Flor de Caña rum, pineapple juice and coconut syrup) served out of a hollowed-out pineapple. Street-food snacks from chef Kfir Ben-Ari (Paradou of Provence, France) follow in global suit—spiced Moroccan nuts, marinated Mediterranean olives—with larger plates like tempura-battered fish and chips with caramelized lemon, and steak frites with chimichurri sauce and rosemary fries.
Owner Duke Quan (Duke’s) named this 55-seat bar-restaurant, tucked under the Williamsburg Bridge, after the Vietnamese word for "beer." Eight taps pour draft beers (Hofbräu, Narragansett, Lagunitas) and tap wines. Dig into Vietnamese plates—such as com suon nuong (grilled pork chop with rice, fried egg and cucumbers) and bo kho duoi bo (oxtail stew)—on the rooftop deck or at the 18-foot-long communal wood table indoors. The space, a former auto-repair shop, retains industrial furnishings, like oil-drum tables and old auto-shop signs, as well as an upright piano in the corner.
Twenty-four taps pour craft beers at this bi-level gastropub's copper-topped bar. Downstairs, patrons can settle into a dark-leather booth to nosh on inventive bistro fare such as a Buffalo fried chicken cobb salad, panko-crusted calamari and a Cajun chicken quesadilla, but the magic happens up on the roof at Tavern29's German beer garden.
There's no denying that pizza tastes better when you’re high. The rooftop seating here, tucked just two stories up and overlooking hoppin’ Metropolitan Avenue, is fairy-tale charming, with strings of lights and rustic wooden tables. Pies come out with bubbling hot cheese and just the right touch of char. Choose from the likes of a clam-pancetta number, or opt for the tried-and-true white pizza combination of ricotta, mozzarella and roasted garlic.
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Blu on Park
While New York's steakhouse stalwarts (Keens, Peter Luger) remain staunchly true to their original forms, today's newer meat meccas have redefined the boundaries of the genre. From glitzy extravagance (and Bieber appearances) at Bowery Meat Company to laidback fun (and $19 cuts) at Quality Eats, it's clear there's no one way to cut that cake. For their take on the trope, European proprietors Emir Muhic and Gigi Dzidzovic (DiWine) adopt the meet-in-the-middle approach, taking over the first three floors of a renovated 1920s-era brownstone with a contemporary-minded restaurant that also channels the building's old-time grace with gray-stained wood panels, sleek marble counters and a working fireplace. In the 132-seat space, diners can settle elegant Windsor-style chairs for an array of traditional and creative starters, as well as seven cuts of steak—all tag-teamed by co-chefs Russell Rosenberg (the Boathouse) and Dusan Celic (DiWine). A crab cake ($22), garnished with marinated jicama, apple salad and remoulade was wonderful—you’ll fight over the last bite. The jumbo shrimp cocktail ($18) featured plump, finger-long crustaceans served over ice, the cocktail sauce fiery from just enough horseradish. Of course, if you’re at a steakhouse, you’re going to go for the beef (why bother if not?). A gargantuan ribeye ($49) arrives at the table still sizzling, flanked by béarnaise and peppercorn sauces. The well-seasoned cut is perfectly cooked, so the sauces are gilding the lily. Yo
Venue says: “Join us for Happy Hour Mon-Sun 4pm-8pm, Oysters $1.5, Draft Beer $6, Well Drinks $8, House Wines $8, and Cocktail of the Day $10”