Real stories about dating and relationships in New York City. Truth is more interesting than fiction.

Take a Trip

I’m going to let you in on a little secret about New York City – some of the best food in the city is actually outside of Manhattan.  That’s right, I said it.   Great food outside of Manhattan.  In the boroughs.

I’m not going to pretend to be an expert on the Brooklyn foodie scene (those Brooklyn people can be even bigger snobs than their Manhattan counterparts).  The places I know tend towards the far flung but well known ethnic restaurants in Jackson Heights (Roti Boti -yummy, yummy) or the Russian places on the boardwalk in Brighton Beach.  And I’ve even been known to ride the subway for over an hour for a perfect slice of pizza (if you don’t know the place, I’m not telling you).

My feeling is that once you get past date 3 or 4 and you decide, “Gee, I like this person“, then there’s no harm in making plans to hop on the subway and take a long ride together (that’s not something I’d do with someone I wasn’t sure I liked).   And there are a lot of advantages to these outer-borough dates.  First, you get to go exploring together.  Maybe find a place that neither of you have ever been to before.  Maybe even try a type of food you’ve never had or wander around a neighborhood you don’t know (and that will surely tell you  a lot about a person).  And depending on where you go, it might end up being a lot cheaper than going out in Manhattan (this is not true of the Russian places on the boardwalk, they can be ridiculously expensive – but still awesome).

I know that a lot of my area readers actually live outside “the city” (OK – here I am going to give myself away a little bit.  I am from a part of the city where we call Manhattan “the city”.  You either get it or you don’t).  Anyway, I’d love to hear about your favorite local places.  The types of places that are worth taking the subway ride from Manhattan on a date.  ’cause you know, I’m always looking for new great places.


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14 to “Take a Trip”


  1. queenie_nyc says:

    Sripraphai, in Queens – best Thai in the city, IMHO. Marlow & Sons in Williamsburg. Peter Luger’s, obviously! An eating tour of Arthur Avenue in the Bronx. An afternoon at Blue Hill, with lunch at the cafe or dinner at the restaurant.

    That last one is technically a Metro-North ride, but only about 20 minutes. :-)

  2. PiscesInPurple says:

    There’s a great little Greek restaurant in Astoria, Queens called Uncle George’s. City Island in the Bronx can’t be beat for seafood, though I’d suggest it mainly as a summer excursion.

  3. SINgleGIRL says:

    Yeah. I almost didn’t write this post and now I’m so glad I did.
    -queenie_nyc,
    I don’t do Peter Luger’s because I don’t eat much red meat, but YES for everyone who does. And yes to Arthur Ave. Blue Hill has been on my wish list for years, but I’ve never been. I don’t know the other places you mentioned and now I’m super excited to try them.
    -PiscesinPurple
    Oh yes! to City Island. My favorite place (summer only) is one of the cheap places at the end of the island with the picnic tables out back. Best fried seafood. It’s the place on the left. I have a favorite Greek place in Manhattan that I actually think is better than the places in Astoria, but I’m not sharing it. It’s too damn crowded already :-)

  4. PiscesInPurple says:

    We’re thinking of the same place at City Island. I just can’t remember the name either!
    As for Uncle George’s… I must admit it’s owned by the family of a childhood friend, who happens to be one of my favorite people in the whole wide word. But I stand by my assertion that the food is excellent, even though I admit I’m totally biased. :)

  5. queenieNYC says:

    Was the City Island place Johnny’s? http://bit.ly/10EQCm

    Now I’m craving fried clams. Thanks a lot, Simone! ;-)

  6. SINgleGIRL says:

    -queenieNYC and PiscesinPurple
    That looks like the place. It’s best to go in teams of 3 or more. 1 person to grab and hold a table(with threats of violence if necessary), 1 person to grab the drinks and another to grab the food. If there’s more people then you can have someone designated for sides, etc. It’s a total zoo on hot days but damn, it’s worth it.

  7. PiscesInPurple says:

    I agree. That’s the place, and it is indeed best tackled in teams. (I usually bring my Puerto Rican step-cousins.)

  8. SINgleGIRL says:

    I think it would also make an awesome double date spot or even a ‘first time the guy meets the friends’ adventure. Seriously, eating there is a bit of a team sport.

  9. derek7272 says:

    Astoria has some cool restaurants, and it’s just a neat place to explore. Try the N/W to the end of the line, or the G/R/V to Steinway street.

  10. Shannia says:

    Keep in mind that I am Canadian and so very far from a new yorker..lol but last time I was in NYC for new years eve we booked super last minute and, well, for affordable lodging we had to stay in Brooklyn. Now I had never been to Brooklyn before and was amazed at all we could find. There was a small Dominican restaurant that turned into sort of a night club after hours right in front of our motel and the food was awesome and authentic. If I could just remember the name :(

  11. recklessstudio says:

    This is great stuff. I am actually going to NYC this weekend so if I have time, I wouldn’t mind venturing out to some of these places.

  12. curiouslt says:

    I’m a big Thai food fan, and I love Joya or Song – same owners, different parts of Brooklyn. Great food, great prices, and the biggest glasses of wine! I lived in manhattan for 14 years, so I could probably give you some hidden gems there too!

  13. HyperDuke says:

    Lol, and i thought that NYC was Gonna be boring.. lol Just Kidding, But Im Goin Up There To Visit One of My Moms old Friends From Back In The Day With her… You Wont Believe Who It is, You Ready For this… RUSSEL SIMMONS… I know thats awesome right? Anywho im going up there for spring break, I plan to have a ball but wat are some hidden places around NYC

  14. CHFBrian says:

    Well, since I write a food blog and review restaurants in Brooklyn, I’m exceptionally biased on this issue. In fact, I’d venture so far as to say that if a girl *wasn’t* interested in coming out and trying a few of my favorite places, it would be a deal breaker.