Every true New Yorker knows that after Labor Day comes not fall but fashion week season. While the streets swell with the latest fashion and It bags of the season, and models parade down runways in venues across the city, the question on everyone's lips is where do all these editors, models, and designers eat once the shows are over?
If you've ever lived through a fashion week, you know how excruciatingly exhausting it can be—the endless Uber rides, the long waits before shows, the camera flashes that are essentially imprinted in your brain after a few hours. This means that a New York Fashion Week meal needs to be easy, quick, filling and, of course, stylish. So if you're looking to brush shoulders with fashion insiders this fashion week, look no further than these classic NYC restaurants.
For a Hearty Breakfast: Nickel & Diner
Start your day by fueling up for runway shows with brunch at SoHo's Nickel & Diner. Located just a few blocks from Spring Studios, where the bulk of the action happens, this upscale diner serves classic brunch favorites in retro digs. For those in a rush, grab a cup of coffee from Nickel & Diner’s free-standing coffee bar, The Coffee Counter, created in partnership with Stumptown Coffee.
What to order: Chicken and waffles or the kale cashew bowl
For a Happy Hour Pit Stop: Bocce USQ
In the heart of Union Square, Bocce USQ is the NYC backyard we never had but always wanted. The all-day Italian eatery is set in the historic Union Square Pavilion, boasting indoor-outdoor vibes complete with a bocce court. It's a vibrant place to escape, enjoy delicious Italian food, refreshing drinks, and some friendly competition on the bocce court. Stop for a happy hour spritz after a long day of shows and previews.
What to order: The summer melon and a farm pizza
Location: Union Square
For an Early Dinner With Friends: Dante
Head a few blocks north of Spring Studios to Dante for chic cocktails and a laid-back atmosphere. The century-old Italian cafe in Greenwich Village offers the best negronis in town, courtesy of famous head bartender Naren Young. Grab a bite from the Australian-American inspired menu featuring flatbreads and fresh pastas. It's the perfect spot for an early dinner with friends.
What to order: Burrata with crushed spring peas and the orecchiette with ramp pesto
Location: Greenwich Village
For a Communal Feast: Tijuana Picnic
If Mexican is more your speed, head east to Tijuana Picnic on the Lower East Side. The Robert McKinley–designed space is cheery and laid-back, while a menu of high-quality ingredients with non-traditional flavor accents transforms casual Mexican fare into bold, balanced, and surprising dishes.
What to order: Chicken Yucateco tacos and street corn (with a side of guac, of course)
Location: Lower East Side
For a Healthy Work Dinner: Left Bank
West Village cornerstone Left Bank is a NYFW no-brainer. The perfect spot for a long post-show dinner or a quick happy hour bite between the mayhem, Left Bank serves up a healthy but hearty fare in a quaint neighborhood setting. No time to dine? Left Bank launched its delivery rotisserie chicken concept, Poulet Sans Tête, delivering full chicken dinners directly to your doorstep or hotel room.
What to order: Heirloom tomatoes with parmesan-dijon dressing and a steak frites
Location: West Village
For a Chic Nightcap: Ophelia
If you find yourself at a show in midtown, don't despair, and head to Ophelia, instead. Located on the 26th floor of the historic Beekman Tower, The Art Deco–style lounge boasts wraparound patios sporting expansive views of the East River and the Manhattan skyline. Previously a hangout for working women during the 1920s, the rooftop pays homage to the property’s past. Grab a seat at one of the rooftop’s velvet banquettes and relax over signature cocktails.
What to order: Truffle fries and a Caribbean old-fashioned
For a Late Night Out: Acme
Located in NoHo, ACME is a New American bistro with dishes showcasing a variety of European flavors but is quintessentially New York. Candlelit tables, faded mirrors, and inviting banquettes lend old-world charm, and an impressive contemporary art collection makes the venue ideal for those who seek a cozy ambiance in which to celebrate. But below the restaurant is where the magic happens. A notoriously hard-to-get-into lounge and cocktail bar with a great dancefloor might keep you up until the wee hours of the morning.
What to order: The spicy pork meatballs and a crab spaghetti
This post was originally posted on September 8, 2018, and has since been updated.