Under the Radar: 9 Most Underrated Restaurants in NYC

Have you seen our list of the most overrated restaurants in New York City? Yep, it's unfortunately true, there are many places in New York that have just completely sold out and become overrated tourist traps.

But don't let these places fool you into thinking that the entire NYC food scene is nothing but overrated.

There are just as many places to eat in NYC that are underrated as there are overrated.

And here's an impressive list of just that: our top 9, most under-the-radar gems in this city.

1. Bianca (5 Bleecker Street)

[via Yelp]
[via Yelp]

Italian restaurants are huge in NYC. Huge. The fact that there are so many can make it easy to overlook some of the city's finest hidden gems. Have one meal at Bianca and you'll totally understand what I mean.

Bianca is a tiny and charming Italian, cash-only eatery that opens at 5 p.m. for dinner.


The food is elegant and delicious, especially the lasagna, which has fresh lasagna noodles piled high with meaty red sauce, hot oozing cheese, and bechamel sauce.

A choir of angels will erupt into song inside your mouth, and you'll wonder how you never knew about this place before.

2.Tocqueville (1 East 15th Street)

[via Yelp]
[via Yelp]

Tocqueville is a delightful French bistro in the Union Square 'hood that never quite seems to get the recognition it deserves. New Yorkers rave about the dining experiences they have at Tocqueville, and we think it's about time to dive in deeper.

Tocqueville's dishes are beautifully plated, well thought out, and delicious. You won't be able to get enough of the grilled octopus and the buttery poached lobster.

Oh you fancy, huh?

3. Jack's Wife Freda (224 Lafayette Street)

[via Sara Oxfeld/foodspotting.com]
[via Sara Oxfeld/foodspotting.com]

This eclectic cafe is situated down in SoHo, where it is home to a charming crowd and great food.

Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner-- there's a little something for everyone at Jack's Wife Freda.

The food is comforting and tastes like home, as it combines Mediterranean favorites with American classics, like the lamb and eggplant lasagna.

[via foodspotting.com]
[via foodspotting.com]

You can also definitely get an amazing brunch here. During breakfast and brunch, the house-made cured duck bacon is served, pairing well with the crowd pleasing baked eggs in a green shakshuka.

They also serve an endless espresso drip for when you need to get your caffeine on. Unique and never boring, this place does not deserve to go overlooked.

4. Amy Ruth's (113 West 116th Street)

[via Tara Hunt/Flickr]

Downtown New Yorkers often don't travel up into the northern neighborhoods of the city, but for food that's this good, the hike is worth the sacrifice.

At Amy Ruth's in Harlem, soul food is a specialty and comfort is classic.

[via Nosher Hungryman/Flickr]

The chicken and waffles are really, really good. I have to say that again: really, really good. 

The meat is crisp on the outside and juicy on the inside, and the waffles are melt-in-your-mouth perfection when drizzled in syrup.


You can order your favorite classic southern sides, like mac and cheese and collard greens.

So what are you waiting for?!

5. Harlem Shake (100 West 124th Street)

[via Chinkerfly/Flickr]

Put all the preconceived ideas of the Harlem Shake to rest and check out out this Harlem Shake.

Burgers and shakes and fries, oh my! This retro burger joint is reminiscent of a 1950s diner, and the menu doesn't deviate far from this theme.

With spins on classics like jerk seasoned fries and red velvet milkshakes, Harlem Shake puts a unique twist on burgers and more, and does it right.


6. Baohaus (238 East 14th Street)

[via Nick Sherman/Flickr]

Maybe you've had momofuku's pork buns, and you already know that pork buns are absolutely, truly amazing foods.


Baohaus on East 14th Street can seemingly disappear right before your eyes as you walk down the street, but the pork buns alone should be enough to draw you in.

Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 6.07.34 AM
[via chiolachic/Flickr]

The Chairman Bao (see what they did there?) has pork belly, crushed peanuts, red sugar, cilantro, and homemade relish.

It's a serious showstopper, and your belly will thank you.

7. Hometown Bar-B-Que (454 Van Brunt Street - Brooklyn)

[via hometownbarbque.com]

Hot joints like Dallas BBQ and Blue Smoke are the leading names in town for barbecue, but have you ever heard of Hometown Bar-B-Que in Red Hook?

Red Hook is pretty out there itself, but it's an up-and-coming neighborhood, and great spots to eat like Hometown Bar-B-Que only reaffirm that.

You'll love their brisket (smoked to perfection), pulled pork, and pastrami bacon, plus all the fixings like coleslaw and potato salad to make the feel of a backyard barbecue complete.

8. The Redhead (349 East 13th Street)

[via theredheadnyc.com]
[via theredheadnyc.com]

The food at The Redhead is funky and flavorful.


It's unique and eccentric, but especially tasty nonetheless.

[via theredheadnyc.com]
[via theredheadnyc.com]

The Redhead's buttermilk fried chicken is juicy and fantastic, a favorite amongst patrons, and the rest of the menu screams southern comfort food that's anything but ordinary.

9. Brucie (234 Court Street - Brooklyn)

[via Instagram/@brucienyc]
[via Instagram/@brucienyc]

Brooklyn's Brucie does serve up some succulent Italian food, and sometimes, they feature a pop-up Asian-Italian menu.

Asian-Italian fusion is seriously not the first food combination we would have thought of, but Brucie really pulls it off perfectly.

The regular Italian classics, like spaghetti and meatballs, are winning; but how about that Italian ramen that they serve on weeknights, am I right?

If you enjoyed this article, check out these 7 Hidden Restaurants & Bars to Discover in NYC!

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