There is no better way to escape the cold than a fireside dinner. Whether you’re grabbing a quick bite to eat on the Upper West Side or cocktails and appetizers on the Lower East Side, here are some of the best restaurants to enjoy delicious food beside a roaring fire.
157 Ludlow St.
New York, NY 10002
The Lower East Side is a little hotter with SakaMai. The Japanese restaurant and sake bar on Ludlow Street is a cozy spot with rustic ambiance and a fireplace in the back room. New Yorkers descending downtown can thaw out near the fire and enjoy some of the signature dishes, including a sashimi platter curated daily by the chef, sizzling plates of wagyu steak and small bites of oil pickled oyster. To complement these dishes, diners can sip on a glass of sake from the extensive menu.
Lincoln Square Steak
208 West 70th St.
New York, NY 10023
Before heading to the opera or just enjoying a night out on the Upper West Side, have a winter meal by the fire at Lincoln Square Steak. Designed to reflect a 1960s vibe, the steakhouse has two fireplaces in the private dining rooms. The Blue Room, which fits up to eight diners, exudes elegance with ornate details and a grand fireplace as the focal point. While sitting by the fire, diners can enjoy a 3-course meal with some of the restaurant’s signature dishes, including petite filet mignon, sizzling Canadian bacon, and hanger steak.
Sushi by Bou at Jue Lan Club
49 West 20th St.
New York, NY 10012
The Limelight is one of Chelsea’s most well-known buildings, but it is also home to one of the area’s hottest restaurants. Tucked inside the 1932 room of the Jue Lan Club, Sushi by Bou brings its acclaimed omakase dishes to the neighborhood. With a speakeasy vibe, the restaurant features a sleek fireplace just a few steps from the sushi counter. There is a neon sign above the fireplace that states, “Don’t Think, Just Eat,” which is the perfect backdrop for any Instagram post. Some of the omakase dishes include scallops, wagyu, and hamachi.
62 Greenwich Ave.
New York, NY 10011
This West Village townhouse has been exquisitely transformed into an elegant steakhouse. Feeling like a home away from home, the tri-level restaurant boasts two fireplaces and is the ideal spot to warm up with your partner and enjoy a romantic dinner near the fire. Executive Chef Victor Chavez, a veteran of the renowned Smith & Wollensky, is at the helm of the kitchen and created a French Grill menu full of classic steak dishes and a large selection of seafood. Whether you order the filet mignon, New York strip or Tomahawk ribeye, you can pair it with some of the steakhouse’s mouthwatering sides dishes, including roasted mushrooms, garlic mashed potatoes or creamed spinach.
5 West 21st St.
New York, NY 10010
New Yorkers can escape the cold and warm up near Merakia’s fireplace. Tucked in the backroom of the Greek restaurant, the white-washed brick fireplace along with the restaurant’s velvet-tufted banquettes and coffered ceiling provide the perfect setting for a romantic date. The menu echoes the ambiance of the space and focuses on a rustic style of cooking where meats are grilled or cooked on spits and a stone hearth. As diners listen to the crackling of the fire, they can begin their meal with Merakia’s signature Greek dips, including the tzatziki, melitzanosalata and kafteri.
John Friia is a freelance journalist and native New Yorker writing about food, drinks and lifestyle. You can follow his adventures on Instagram