Admit it. If you live near the Lower East Side, you’ve probably ordered the same old takeout, been heckled by the same group of teens sitting on skateboards in Seward Park, and even seen the same person go on multiple dates at Cervo’s. You may be in desperate need of a change. That’s why we wrote about the LES’s newest and best restaurants open for takeout, outdoor dining, and/or indoor dining. We’ve been to all of them, so you can feel good about spending your money - possibly unlike the person going on all those Hinge dates.
All restaurants featured on The Infatuation are selected by our editorial team. The Best New Restaurants On The Lower East Side is presented by NYCgo. Their All In NYC: Neighborhood Getaways are the best way to support local business and rediscover NYC right now. Get up to $100 back as you explore with your registered Mastercard. Are you All In? Explore the offers at NYCgo.com.
The LES is now officially a better place to eat burgers than it was six months ago. That’s all thanks to this new soul food restaurant on Orchard Street. Oola’s Kitchen’s double smash-patty burger comes with enough cheese and caramelized onion jam to cover the burger like it’s being tucked in at night. This burger is absolutely what you should be ordering, but if you want to try something else, they also serve some sticky, fried ribs that we’d happily eat at 2am in front of our refrigerator. You can stop by for outdoor dining Tuesday through Friday, or check out their website for takeout and delivery orders.
Several seconds after biting into Fat Choy’s toasted sesame pancake sandwich filled with hearty mushroom ragu and crisp slaw, you’ll forget about all of the upsetting sloppy joes of your past. This new Chinese-inspired spot sort of just happens to be vegan - or at least that’s the effect of eating their soft rice rolls and perfectly-fried salt and pepper cauliflower bites. It’s run by someone who used to work at Golden Diner (another LES spot with great vegetarian options), and has some distinct Superiority-Burger-punk-rock-but-make-it-produce energy. Check out their takeout window on Broome Street Tuesday through Sunday until 8pm - there are a few tables where you can hang out while you disown the memories of sweet ground beef on stale potato buns.
The difference between this new Caribbean-inspired spot and your neighborhood jerk chicken spot is that you can try nearly everything in the form of a steamed bao or a massive roti. Most of The Bun Hut’s menu incorporates Jamaican, West Indian, and Bahamian dishes, like sticky jerk chicken, braised curry goat, and coconut shrimp. Order the crab cake bao (which could easily steal the show at a porch party in Maryland) and a chicken curry roti that’s creamy, subtly spicy, and filled with hunks of sweet plantains and julienned carrots. The Bun Hut is open for takeout, delivery, and outdoor dining for lunch and dinner every day except Sunday.
If you’re looking for a casual outdoor option with food that will quickly become some of your favorite in the neighborhood, this excellent Vietnamese restaurant is where you should go. Saigon Social doesn’t have any table service. Instead, they serve delicious dishes like a chicken sandwich covered in slightly-numbing lime leaf aioli and garlic noodles from a takeout window on Orchard Street. Make sure to get the bún chả here - it’s the best version we’ve had in the borough.
More great, new Caribbean food - this time with a focus on Dominican dishes. Before you send us a pedantic email: yes - we know that Km1 is located on the northside of Houston Street, which technically disqualifies it from Lower East Side-dom. But when you try this restaurant’s skirt steak mofongo and honey-glazed jerk wings, you’ll be glad you saw it mentioned here. Stop by KM1 for their covered outdoor dining, call 646-669-7547 for pick-up, or place your delivery order online.