New York City is lauded for so many things – its fashion, culture, architecture, arts, business, and something that matters a lot to all of us: its food. One thing I didn’t realize when I went to New York City was just how overwhelming it would be to decide something as seemingly simple as where to eat. There are restaurants and food trucks around every corner, and unless they post a menu outside their door, it can be hard to figure out what kind of atmosphere or price range you’re going to walk into when you cross the threshold. On top of that, you may not even know what times of day certain restaurants or cafes are open, let alone when they are usually most busy.
This is why it’s important to have a plan in mind for eating before you go to New York City, especially if your itinerary includes other things besides foodie ventures, because the act of finding a place to eat alone can be time consuming.
It might sound enticing to just go with the flow when exploring a new place. And this can be fun. It makes the things you come across all the more exciting and surprising, and it lets you get an un-staged taste of the city. But believe me when I say, even if you planned an itinerary for a trip to New York City, from the moment you woke up and the moment you went to bed, there would still be at least a dozen things or people that were still able to shock you by the end of the day.
And when it comes to being hungry, you don’t want to find yourself at the end of a day of exploring by foot feeling achy and tired, wandering around the same three blocks of a city with hundreds of blocks. You are simply not going to know where to start when it comes to food, and further, you don’t want to get stuck in the miserable situation of walking out of restaurant after restaurant because of a wait going out the door. Trust me when I say that you’ll wish you had at least done a little research ahead of time.
When I last went to the city, my feet were swollen from a full day of walking and riding the Subway by the point my partner and I wanted dinner. We walked up and down the same couple of streets looking for a place to eat without a wait until we eventually ended up where we were an hour earlier and settled with a random restaurant.
Not to worry, though, because chances are, if you are in an up and coming area of the city, such as West Village where I was, pretty much any restaurant you walk into is going to be worthwhile. This being said, you can avoid a lot of extra stress while traveling if you just do a little research ahead of time, even if that means looking up places on Google on your plane or car ride there.