Where is the Real Uptown Restaurant Row?
Posted on August 9, 2016
Bohemia Blog by Agent Nick Brown
Many uptowners consider Frederick Douglass Blvd. (aka 8th Avenue for those under 59th St.) the "Restaurant Row" of Harlem. With the likes of Lido, Marcus Samueslsson's Sweetbird Rotisserie, Harlem Tavern, and Lolo's Seafood Shack, it is easy to see why.
However, I think it is unfair to the culinary scene of thriving Harlem to count out what is going on over on Lenox Avenue. I personally relocated to Lenox Avenue and have been blown away by the energy, architectural beauty, and of course, the food. Hop on the 2/3 express trains and take a 15 minute ride from Midtown up to 125th St. with an empty stomach and you will see what I mean.
First, Babbalucci has the best pizza I have tasted in New York City since my last sampling of the Brooklyn hot spots. They put their own twist on delicious wood-fired oven pizzas by adding spicy peppers and (don't be scared, they are delicious) snails. Remove the pizza and this is a fantastic Italian restaurant with modern takes on mediterranean classics. Or, you can just sit at the bar and enjoy the live music while sipping their specialty cocktails. This is my favorite restaurant in all 5 boroughs.
This eccentric modern Indian restaurant makes you never want to order a plastic container of chicken tikka masala ever again. They do Indian food their own way and have a beautiful space to boot. Private backyard, great cocktails, and an overall great dining experience.
Yes, a burger place is making this list. No need to stand in line at Shake Shack when you can sit outside and enjoy Harlem Shake's delicious burgers and jerk chicken sandwiches. This place has a neighborhood vibe and an old school look that one shouldn't miss.
There are plenty of french restaurants above Central Park, but this one certainly stands out. At night there is nothing like sitting in Cheri's garden while one of NYC's own plays a grand piano that sits in the middle of the restaurant.
So don't take my word for it, try it out yourself and take a stroll up and down Lenox Avenue to experience some of the amazing things happening uptown.