Posted on August 30, 2012

by Keith Collins

Harlem is historically known for having some of the best food in New York City. Here are a few of my personal favorites to try out once you move to the area!

Jacob Restaurant
2695 Frederick Douglass Blvd

8th Avenue between 143 and 144

Listed as "Soul Food and Salad Bar", Jacob Restaurant is a buffet style restaurant that has not only Southern Barbecue, but also gives you the chance to try Caribbean and Continental foods. They're so popular that they even have another location at 373 Lenox Avenue . Some favorite dishes are the fried chicken (of course), mac and cheese, homemade peach cobbler and the banana pudding! If you're looking for low priced, delicious barbecue, this is the place to go!

Harlem Bar-B-Que

2367 Frederick Douglass Blvd

8th Avenue between 127 and 128

Harlem Bar-B-Que is exactly what it's name tells you; a traditional, "home cooked" soul food meal. The "Harlem sized" frozen drinks are fantastic, and well worth the trip alone (they're very similar to the drinks at Dallas BBQ, but without the tourists!)  The complimentary "bottomless"  is some of the best in the city. Oh, and most importantly, the chicken and waffles. Get the chicken and waffles.


17 W 125th St
(between 5th Ave & Lenox Ave)

Mobay is a funky "Caribbean Soul Fusion". Their website says, "We look to fill the void of the missing St. Louis Style, Dry Rubbed Slow Smoked with Mesquite Barbecue for 10 hours, no sauce-please, Barbecue missing in the Harlem area," and it's exactly what they do. Their cornbread is covered in a coconut glaze, which is both different and delectable. It's a great place to go if you're looking for big portions!

Charles' Country Pan Fried Chicken

2839-2841 Frederick Douglass Blvd

8th Avenue between 151 and 152

Charles' is definitely worth the extra few stops on the train. Come here for the $13.95 all you can eat buffet! There is a huge community debate on whether or not the fried chicken or the ribs are better (I personally will go with the ribs on this one-- though the chicken is wonderfult) This is the Barbecue place to go to when you really want to feel the Southern hospitality. 

Dinosaur Bar-B-Que

700 W 125th St
(between 12th Ave & W Riverside Dr)

Ask anyone in the Harlem area, or anyone who's been to the Harlem area, and they will recommend Dinosaur Bar-B-Que. The place is always packed, so make sure to make reservations! The mac and cheese is the most recommended in New York, even including restaurants that specialize in just mac and cheese. Great smoked BBQ, go try it out!