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New York’s 6 Best Touristy Restaurants Worth The Hype

February 3, 2014 6:00 AM

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New York City can seem overrun with tourists and, as a result, with tourist traps. While most of NYC’s touristy restaurants can be skipped, a few gems are worth checking out. Whether you’re visiting the city or a New Yorker looking for a good meal, these six restaurants and food destinations are worth braving the lines and tourists for.

More: Best Tours For NYC Visitors And Residents

Photo Credit: Katz's Delicatessen

Photo Credit: Katz’s Delicatessen

Katz’s Delicatessen
205 E Houston St
New York, NY 10002
(212) 254-2246
www.katzsdelicatessen.com

For a classic New York pastrami sandwich, both locals and tourists alike head to Katz’s Delicatessen. The Lower East Side deli was founded in 1888, making it the oldest in New York City. Stick to the classics and order a hand-carved pastrami on rye sandwich for $16.95. Don’t be intimidated by the sandwich prices; one can easily feed two people heartily. In additional to eating one of New York’s best pastrami sandwiches, you’ll have visited the setting of Meg Ryan’s infamous scene in When Harry Met Sally.

More: Best NYC Jewish Delis

Photo Credit: Grimaldi's

Photo Credit: Grimaldi’s

Grimaldi’s
1 Front Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(718) 858-4300
www.grimaldisnyc.com

Eating Grimaldi’s pizza pies is a quintessential New York experience. While the line is notoriously long, the views of the Brooklyn Bridge and the pies themselves are both spectacular. Grimaldi’s uses a coal-fired oven and fresh mozzarella delivered daily. Come hungry: the pizzeria doesn’t sell pizza by the slice. Grimaldi’s has a few New York locations, but the primary Dumbo location is worth the trip to Brooklyn. In fact, make an afternoon out of it and cross the iconic Brooklyn Bridge by foot first.

More: Brooklyn’s Best Slices Of Pizza

Photo Credit: Eataly

Photo Credit: Eataly

Eataly
200 5th Ave
New York, NY 10010
(212) 229-2560
www.eataly.com

Eataly is a one-stop shop in Manhattan’s Flatiron district. You’ll find Italian groceries, fresh treats, restaurants, drinks, cookbooks and more in the 50,000 square foot superstore. Eateries are divided by food group: Manzo focuses on beef, Il Pesce on fish and Le Verdure on vegetables. Head to Birreria, the rooftop restaurant, for an Eataly-brewed cask ale and house-made sausage. The retractable glass roof ensures a comfortable meal in either winter or summer. Grab a pistachio gelato at Il Gelato downstairs for dessert.

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Photo Credit: Balthazar

Photo Credit: Balthazar

Balthazar
80 Spring St
New York, NY 10012
(212) 965-1414
www.balthazarny.com

This Parisian brasserie has become the New York spot to see and be seen. The SoHo restaurant is bustling from morning until night. Stop into Balthazar’s bakery for a warm baguette or pastry. If you have the time (or the reservation), come for traditional bistro fare during lunch or dinner. The Steak Frites with maître d’ butter or béarnaise sauce for $38.00 is Balthazar’s best-selling dish. Make sure to keep an eye out for dining celebrities.

Photo Credit: Shake Shack

Photo Credit: Shake Shack

Shake Shack
Various Locations
New York, NY
www.shakeshack.com

While Shake Shack has grown to have locations outside of NYC, its roots are in New York’s Madison Square Park. The small burger joint – there’s no indoor seating – is infamous for long lines and stellar all-natural burgers in one of Manhattan’s prettiest parks. Order a Double ShackBurger, topped with lettuce, tomato and ShackSauce. Skip the fries and try a concrete instead – rich frozen custards mixed with add-ins like donuts, strawberry preserves and cinnamon sugar (Jelly’s Last Donut).

More: New York City’s Best Cheesy Dishes

Photo Credit: Peter Luger's

Photo Credit: Peter Luger’s

Peter Luger
178 Broadway
New York, NY 11211
(718) 387-7400
www.peterluger.com

For a true splurge, head to this Williamsburg institution with a simple menu and decadent steaks carved tableside. The Michelin star restaurant doesn’t boast splashy décor or a large selection of dining options. But the steaks are some of the best in New York. Spring for a porterhouse steak for two, three or four. The luxuriously marbled steaks are aged in house, and perfectly broiled.

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Adrienne Smith manages Lifestyle & Entertainment content for CBS Local. Follow her on Twitter.

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