An Eater Editor's Personal NYC Faves

There's gotta be like, what, at least 10 million bars and restaurants in New York, right? And it's not just that this town is coated with eateries and drinking holes — it's that those bistros, five-star spots, gastropubs, and hipster beer gardens are always opening, closing, swapping chefs, launching the latest must-have pastry, or failing inspection. That considered, we're quite fortunate to have dedicated, news-gathering foodies like Amanda Kludt (one of our NYC 30 Under 30 stars) manning breathless, restaurant-covering blogs like the inimitable Eater.
But in a town where eating is taken so darn seriously, what does the editor who fuels foodies with intel all day long do when it's time to relax? Perhaps unsurprisingly, Kludt's personal "me time" regime doesn't involve hunting down the latest It Chef or standing in line for cronuts. Rather, she's a sucker for solid, relatable eateries, decades-old cultural distractions, and — what's this? — actual true-to-life greasy spoon diners. For real.
Check out all of Kludt's favorite NYC picks in the slideshow and the rest of our top folks in NYC art, music, food, and fashion here.
Photo: Courtesy Campbell Cheese & Grocery
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Photo: Courtesy Wikimedia Commons.
No Sleep 'Til Brooklyn
“After I graduated NYU, I couldn't afford to live in the East Village anymore. Williamsburg just seemed the natural next step for an underpaid 22 year old, and this area (the Graham/Grand stop) was simply more affordable than Bedford/Lorimer. I love that there's a quiet peacefulness to the neighborhood — lots of trees, old Italian grandmas out on the stoops. And while I've always loved the old institutions (Graham Ave Meats & Deli, Emily's Pork Store, Napolitano's Pharmacy), I enjoy that we now have wine bars, dive bars, a two-star restaurant (Gwynnett St.), coffee shops, etc. There's even a new bougie juice bar on Graham!”
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Photo: Courtesy Tuffet
Local Heros
“Around here, I like Milly & Earl for jewelry and stationery; Emily's Pork Store for meat (especially braciole), cheese, and various Italian dried and canned goods; Campbell Cheese & Grocery for nicer cheeses and schmancy produce; and The Brooklyn Kitchen and Meat Hook for kitchen supplies and special occasion butcher shop needs. I'll typically go to our high-end restaurant — the aforementioned Gwynnett St. — when there's something to celebrate, when I'm trying to impress someone, or when I haven't seen the owner in awhile. Bamonte's, a 100-plus-year-old red sauce Italian joint, is my favorite date night spot. For drinks, I'll hit up Tuffet, Lady Jay's, or The Grand.”
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Photo: Courtest Carnegie Hall
Weekend Plans
“I get really wistful walking around Gramercy, especially right around Gramercy Park, and I love spying on the apartments on Ninth and 11th streets between Fifth and Sixth avenues. For a classy night out, I like to hit up the cheap seats at Carnegie Hall with my husband and then go to some uptown bar or restaurant we've never been to. On the other end of the spectrum, we'll often drive out to Queens to try new ethnic restaurants where there are no waits, no pretension, just delicious, often exciting food.”
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Photo: Courtesy Takashi
The Usual Suspects
“I love the food and the vibe at Rubirosa in Nolita — get any of their homemade pastas and desserts. And I've never had a bad time at Casa Mono. There, the trick is to just order as many things as your group will let you, making sure to overload with seafood. I also love all of the weird and wild offerings at offal-centric Takashi in the Village."
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Photo: Courtesy Pinkyotto
Shopping List
“Whenever I haven't bought a dress in awhile, I'll go and pick up something at Pinkyotto, which always has something fun and girly and sometimes unusual. Staples I'll get at Madewell or Uniqlo. Pretty much all of my shoes are from Dolce Vita. This one's a service, not a place, but I'm obsessed with — as in I yammer on to everyone I know about it — Quinciple. It's a food delivery service where a woman with amazing connections to local farms and purveyors creates a box of groceries for you every week. It's $40 and includes everything from eggs to steak to the most perfect strawberries, to herbs and grains and cookies and vegetables. I'm eating better and learning how to work with new ingredients."
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Photo: RexUSA
Simple Pleasures
“There is a special place in my heart for my local, unlovely greasy spoon Garden Grill, which I visit for weekend breakfasts and the occasional dinner. It's about as far away as you can get from the buzzy and glam restaurants that Eater often covers, but I just appreciate the normalcy of the place.”