Local Love: Editor's Favorites in New York

In the course of my career as a Citysearch editor in New York (and prior to that, in San Francisco), I've experienced hundreds of restaurants, bars, shops and hotels, and it's made me insufferable: I'm ludicrously picky. This may be an awful personality trait, but when I recommend a place, I'm never wrong. See how irritating that is? Still, these places are amazing, I promise.

Updated: September 09, 2010

Cheap Eats in New York

Xi'an Famous Foods

81 St Marks Pl, New York, NY 10003

The Middle Eastern-tinged western Chinese food at Xi'an is about as interesting, delicious and cheap (almost everything is less than $5; the succulent pork burger is just $2) as you're going to find anywhere, and it's right on convenient (if obnoxious) St. Marks Place.

Coffee in New York

Blue Bottle Coffee Co.

160 Berry St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Taken black, the coffee here has sweet floral notes and flavor complexities usually not talked about outside of Wine Spectator. And even if you're not a coffee snob, you'll appreciate the nuclear kick--one cup at Blue Bottle is equivalent to two or three at Starbucks.

Outdoor Bar in New York

Good Company

10 Hope St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Looking to be the ultimate summertime bar, Good Co.'s got one of the biggest patios in Williamsburg, packed with picnic tables, games like ping-pong, corn-hole and darts, plus a grill for the barbecue, which is given away with drinks on the weekends.

Bike Shop in New York

718 Cyclery

305 16th St, Brooklyn, NY 11215

At this one-man, home-based shop in Park Slope, bike-smith Joe Nocella builds custom bikes for only the wholesale cost of parts (you order through him), plus $100 to build the bike. Best of all, the labor on any subsequent tune-ups, repairs and upgrades is free. (Yep, that's my bike in the photo.)

Sunset Spot in New York

The High Line

472 W 16th St, New York, NY 10011

Maybe it's the spray tan fumes coming from New Jersey, but I've never been to a better place to watch the sunset than this elevated park/work of art. The chaise lounges are beautiful when they're not being hogged by chubby tourists.

Den of Sin in New York


98 Kenmare St, New York, NY 10012

It isn't always easy to get into this underground lair (wear something tight and black, bring chicks, or be very attractive), but once you're in you're sort of pre-approved and everyone is super approachable, fun and usually pretty hot.

Brunch Spot in New York


229 S 4th St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Brunch at Traif--whether it's truffled eggs in a nest or a lobster-mascarpone scramble--is the best I've ever had anywhere, and the back garden has a lawn where you can lie down in the grass (shouldn't every restaurant have that?).