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Good place to eat at bar alone?

Looking for good options for solo dining as a young female. Enjoy all kinds of food but looking for options other than burgers / bar food. Any thoughts?

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  1. Hearth is great to eat alone at. Ask to sit at the pass - a section of 4 bar-style seats that overlooks the kitchen. The serve a full menu there and you get to see the whole kitchen in action. Plus the food is great too...

    1. Casa Mono, Gramercy Tavern, Alta, honestly there are so many places where you would feel comfortable and can get some really good food at a bar alone.

      1. Since there are numerous possibilities, it would help if you would give us a few specifics.

        1. What cuisines do you prefer?

        2. Do you want casual or fancy?

        3. What neighborhoods would be convenient for you?

        4. What is your budget? And tell us if that figure includes drinks (wine, liquor), tax, & tip.

        1. There's a place on I like to go to called PS 450. 450 Park Avenue South Between 30th & 31st Streets. Young staff - fun place. They have a good variety of food (not just burgers) but the stuff is relatively standard (quesadillas, salads, etc.)

          I really like the lounge at the Hotel Roger Williams on Madison - set up like a living room and very cozy. They have cheeses and ligher food - a little on the pricey side buy still really cool. Once again, very friendly staff.

          The Carlton Hotel (also on Madison) has like three or four different bars but I've never eaten there. Also really cool.

          1. I've eaten at the bar at Saigon Grill on University. I love the food there (as do many others on the Boards) and I think it would be absolutely fine for a woman dining alone.

            1. If you want to try an awesome lobster roll, the counters at both Mary's Fish Camp & Pearl Oyster bar are excellent for solo dining.

              1. Really any place that serves food at the bar is great for solo dining, so since I am in the same boat (except that I'm not a female and don't know if you'd consider me young anymore!), I'd love if people would continue to list such places in this thread.

                1. Thanks for the suggestions. I like all food - not looking for anything too expensive, must be downtown.
                  I've eaten by myself in all types of places (in the city and elswhere) but I'm looking for suggestions on places where I won't be the only one eating solo and that won't be too crowded with people standing around me elbowing to get drinks. Bonus if it's a place low key enough where reading a book / the paper is an option.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: alyssi

                    A favorite place of mine to eat alone is Bellavitae at the "chef's counter." There are usually other solos there and you can watch a chef painstakingly make dishes and interact with him/her. It's not a traditional bar, but sort of a variation on it.

                  2. you may want to give harry's cafe a shot (hanover square). i also really like the bar at lupa and, if you consider it a "bar", the sushi bar at ushi wakamaru.

                    1. Whenever I eat at Le Zie, there is a surprising number of solo diners at tables. They are regulars and appear very comfortable sitting at their table alone. If you want to sit at a bar downtown, than I would second Hearth.

                      1. I just moved downtown and I can recommend Meade's on Water/Peck for dining alone. Food is good and i wasn't the only one eating alone, so i didn't feel weird. People drinking at the bar were friendly and I've gone back a few times and I'm starting to feel like a regular.

                        1. Hi,

                          I would highly recommend going to 'ino in the village. It is busy during the peak hours, but it is great for a meal alone during the off-peak hours! The place has a good bar, delicious sandwiches, a homey atmosphere, and a good wine selection. The staff is also really nice and welcoming. A great choice!

                          1. I had dinner a couple of times alone at the bar because I go to NY by myself once in a while. I had dinner at Casa Mono and Otto. Those are two places where you have small plates and quartinos of wine (around 2 small glasses of wine) so it is a good formula for a single person. Both places are good but Otto gets on the noisy side if you don't go early.

                            There's a place called Bar 89 in Soho (89 Mercer street). They serve the best drinks (caipirinhas are the best, mojitos and cosmos also) and they serve food and the place is not too crowded and bustling with 20 year olds. It is a really great place.

                            I always go back to Campanile (29th street between Madison and park avenue south) because the owner will have a chat with you when you have dinner at the bar. It is a great place if you want peace and quiet. It is an older crowd with great food.

                            I love going to NY by myself and I'm never bored because I adopted that solution...having dinner at the bar of a restaurant...I almost always have a chat with someone or the owner/waiter.

                            1. I would reccommend Shimizu for sushi. I found it after the hounds gracously suggested it when I was looking for places to dine solo last year. Since then, it has become one of my favorite NYC places (solo or with others). Very comfortable with SUPERB fish. You can even name a reasonable price like $45 or $50 and have an Omakase which is quite varied and exciting. Enjoy!

                              1. 'ino on Bayard street just a block up from 6th avenue. Good wine selection and plenty of small plate options but ever since I had the three cheese panini it's the only thing I order. Aside from the fantastic bread that they use on all the great paninis the 3 cheese has truffle oil which is where my buck stops. TRUFFLE OIL!!!! Mmmm.

                                Cafe Gitane is also a good spot in my neighborhood for solo dinners. I'd reccommend going for dinner and preferably on week nights. The place is a scene otherwise and tho it is good I would not wait on line to eat there, however I am good friends with a former manager and probably burnt myself out on it after a couple years. For food: Cous cous is excellent, as is the Roasted chicken sandwich with parmesean roasted tomatoes and chipotle mayo. I also like the avocado toast on 7 grain and the Hachi Parmentier. There are also lots of pretty people and sneakily angled mirrors for spying on them from the bar.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: 2slices

                                  i agree with everyone who recommended 'ino. definitely go at an off-hour to avoid the waits. surprisingly, i've noticed that it can sometimes be less crowded during "traditional" dinner hours, since the prime time to go there (at least on weekends) is later in the evening, i.e. past 10pm.

                                  just wanted to clarify one point on 'ino, tho: it's on bedford st btwn downing st and the intersection of w. houston/6th ave.

                                2. Spigolo-2nd and like 80th.
                                  Union Square Cafe

                                  1. gotham bar and grill--
                                    i had a great lunch at the bar at lupa--which doesn't suprise me as both there and at otto, the bar tenders were very knowledgeable and able to guide me to wines I really liked that worked well with what I was eating.