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The Best Hidden Restaurants in New York City

Why is there a crowd of people down that alley that is covered in street art from wall to wall? Why is there a huge line in the middle of a hotel in midtown? Usually by design, hidden restaurants have an aura of mystique and exclusivity about them. They are very easy to overlook if you not in the know. Knowing is half the battle so here is our list of the best hidden restaurants in New York City.

Freemans – 191 Chrystie St
The worst kept secret in the Lower East Side is probably Freemans, a restaurant a hidden away, down an alley off of Rivington Street that most people normally would just briskly walk past. Freemans is always packed with people craving rustic American dishes like their devils on horseback, seared filet mignon and lamb stew with potato- herb dumplings.

Hudson Clearwater – 447 Hudson St
Hudson Clearwater is another hard to locate restaurant which you can only find by looking for its unmarked green door on Morton Street. Once you are past the door, you are led through a beautiful garden and dining room. A perfect meal here can start with a succulent duck leg confit with crispy skin served with jalapeno cornbread along with a grilled hangar steak.

Pulqueria – 11 Doyers St
The center of what was once called “The Bloody Angle” in Chinatown lies a Mexican bar and restaurant with a nondescript storefront. Pulqueria serves a great guacamole and makes awesome tacos.

La Esquina/ The Corner Deli – 114 Kenmare Street
Another option for Mexican cuisine is La Esquina which looks like an unassuming old school diner at first glance but it is in fact where locals know they can find delicious tacos and enchiladas.

Burger Joint – In the Le Parker Meridien 119 W 56th St
The Burger Joint serves arguably one of the best burgers in New York City and it is hidden at the Le Parker Meridien Hotel. A small neon sign of a burger points your way to the Burger Joint but it is easier to just look for the line.

Otafuku – 236 E 9th St
St. Marks Place is a bustling NYC block that is one of the pinnacles of Japanese cuisine in NYC. However, just a block away from St. Marks Place is a much quieter block, East 9th St. On East 9th Street you will find a tiny “hole in the wall” location that specializes in takoyaki, aka octopus balls.

Sake Bar Decibel – 240 E 9th St
Close to Otafuku is Decibel, a sake bar down a flight of stairs that is very easy to miss if you are not looking for it. Along with the sake, Decibel serves a number of delicious Japanese specialties like edamame, tofu and wasabi shumai.

Duck Confit Hudson Clearwater