HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >


Best milkshakes in NYC?

Who has got the best milkshakes in all of Manhattan?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Sounds like a suggestive question, but getting past that I'd say the place on Avenue A around 7th does a nice job.

    4 Replies
    1. re: addictedtolunch

      Ray's Deli

      ... is the 'place on Avenue A around 7th' that 'does a nice job.'.
      Ray's ---> http://famousfatdave.com/blog/2006/05...

      If you want a real classic, then it's the Lexington Candy Shop. (Can be expensive though).
      View the slide show ---> http://nymag.com/listings/restaurant/...

      1. re: addictedtolunch

        this is the place w/ the little window right (where you could get a sundae at 2 a.m.)? i used to work right next door, and thought that was so rad you could get a sundae virtually anytime.

        1. re: unocal

          Wait, where is Ray's?? I've tried finding it twice now. Did it change its name? I found a place which advertised its milkshakes on Ave A between St.M's and 7th, it was a tiny little place with two ladies behind the counter. It didn't say Ray's anywhere though and I think it was called Belgian Frites. Help?!

          1. re: AgentRed

            That's Rays. It has a take-out window on the street side, with a hand-written sign advertising their shakes, malts, egg creams, etc.

      2. The shakes at Philly Slim's always seem to hit the spot for me. Super sweet and cold cups of deliciousness.

        1. Believe it or not, The Skylight Diner on 34th St. makes a mean vanilla milkshake.

          1. I was delighted to find that Blue Smoke had a wonderful vanilla milkshake. It was kind of odd having it after stuffing myself with ribs and side dishes, but I finished the entire milkshake (it was that good!).

            1. The black cow shake at Good Burger. Good Lord.

              1. Johnny Rockets, though pretty awful in the burger department, has my favorite black and white shake.

                1 Reply
                1. re: ChowDiva

                  I actually had one on Tuesday night. It tasted okay, but it had chunks of ice in it. At that place you're at the mercy of whomever is working there and doesn't want to be.


                2. Dare I say it? Shake Shack?

                  Best Black and White I've ever had anyway. They use hot fudge instead of chocolate syrup!

                  1 Reply
                  1. HANDS DOWN Island Burgers on 50-something and 9th Ave. They may not have fries, but holy cow the shakes are to die for. You might die sucking them out of the cup though, super super thick.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: ballulah

                      How could I forget Island Burger? Yes, their shakes are fantastic!!

                    2. Shake Shack
                      I really like some of the flavors at Stand, but they are much thicker
                      Little Pie Company does a good traditional milkshake
                      I'd like to try Ronnybrook in Chelsea Market now that it's reopened
                      I didn't much care for Brgr, which had received some good press (I think they may use Ronnybrook ice cream)

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Lucia

                        Off topic a little, but I was really psyched for Ronnybrook ice cream and went in just last week. I got a taste of the ginger creme brulee flavor and didn't like it, so I got the strawberry. And it was, honestly, kind of gross. It tasted like strawberry-flavored Nestle Quik syrup. Which is completely baffling, because I know (assume) they use fresh ingredients and all that jazz. But ugh. I actually threw it away. I will go back, probably, but man I hope their other flavors are better...

                        1. re: Lucia

                          Speaking up as someone who is admittedly not a shake-maven, the toasted marshmallow shake at Stand is one big, cold wet dream. Yum!

                        2. The chocolate shake at Shake Shack is to die for. It's made with Valrhona chocolate and it's got the most intense, pure chocolaty flavor of any shake I've had. Very decadent.

                          1. For quick and relatively cheap, I agree w/ ballulah re: Island Burger (766 9th Ave. btwn 51st & 52nd).

                            However, if you have about 2 hours to spare, I know it's not exactly a milkshake, but I really think Serendipity's frozen hot chocolate is worth the hype (and the wait). I have found that the best way to deal w/ the ridiculous line is to put your name down, then get take-out from Taksim (awesome Turkish on 2nd and 55th-ish), then eat it outside while you wait for your table at Serendipity.

                            P.S.: under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should you eat the non-dessert food at Serendipity, it is truly vile.

                            1. Black and White at Zip Burger

                              Any shake at the Shake Shack

                              1. What about malts? They seem hard to find and then, if found, hard to get done right (i.e. with lots of malt). Johnny Rockets has a good one...anywhere else?

                                9 Replies
                                1. re: pastoralia

                                  I agree that Johnny Rockets has the best malted milk shake. I just returned from having one at Stand which was excellent although extremely thick.

                                    1. re: pastoralia

                                      Link - I've read that they use the gelato from Labortorio di Gelato for the shakes:

                                      112 University Pl, New York, NY 10003

                                      1. re: MMRuth

                                        they do indeed! try the toasted marshmallow!

                                    2. re: maggiepc

                                      Speaking of Stand. The Toasted Marshmallow Milkshake there is unique and wonderful. I don't even like toasted marshmallows (hate the gooey stickiness), but like it. Worth a try.


                                      1. re: Midtown Jimmi

                                        The Toasted Marshmallow is the best shake. Hands down. Thick, flavorful, great texture. Wonderful.
                                        Island Burger: cloying vanilla ice cream used for the black and white. Disappointing.
                                        Johnny Rockets: Great when you stay in: you get the extra in the metal container.
                                        EJs (on the UWS) is pretty good too.

                                        1. re: NYC Sassy Gal

                                          Just had the Toasted Marshmallow shake at Stand. Absolutely incredible. And the Burger/onion rings were out of this world. Just amazing!

                                          1. re: jdross19

                                            I've got to try the Toasted Marshmallow shake. Where is Stand located?

                                  1. Cozy Soup n' Burger, B'way & 8th

                                    1. Silver Spurs makes the best strawberry malted around. Broadway locale.

                                        1. Ellen's Stardust Diner. 50's style diner, only place that really does make them like they used to.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: hungry_fox

                                            Agree with Ellen's, though I've never had a non-alcoholic milkshake there. They sell a variety of "adult milkshakes" and the alcohol brings the milkshake to the next level.

                                          2. Tom's Restaurant (aka the diner that everyone takes a picture in front of and calls it the Seinfeld dinner) makes a real good milkshake. The coffee ones are delicious.

                                            9 Replies
                                            1. re: AndrewOG

                                              Whoa, a coffee milkshake? That sounds interesting.
                                              Is it coffee ice cream or is it vanilla ice cream with brewed coffee in it?

                                              1. re: Cheese Boy

                                                good question. i think its coffee ice cream with regular milk. delicious nontheless

                                                1. re: AndrewOG

                                                  A coffee milkshake is made with coffee syrup and coffee ice cream, just as a chocolate milkshake is made with chocolate syrup and chocolate icecream. Mix the chocolate and coffee together -- I guess what Tom's calls a Broadway shake -- for a mocha milkshake (my favorite).

                                                  1. re: Blumie

                                                    I grew up on coffee milkshakes (my mom is from RI where coffee milk is the state drink). Any idea where i can find them in NYC? nobody seems to use real coffee syrup (it guess since its hard to come by here) but they're my go-to comfort food when times are tough. Any suggestions?

                                                    1. re: jabuon

                                                      I liked BLT Burger's coffee shake, but couldn't tell you if it was made that way. i suspect it had coffee syrup... and it was really good!

                                                      1. re: jabuon

                                                        Coffee syrup's only hard to come by if you ask for it at a place that doesn't have it. :)

                                                        Fox's (of U-Bet fame) makes one, for instance.

                                                      2. re: Blumie

                                                        A lot of purists (myself not included) say a choc. shake is to be made with vanilla ice cream. I always make sure it's choc. ice cream, as it can't be too chocolatey for me. Also, "baffling" totally covers the Ronnybrook experience. Their chocolate is only BARELY chocolate. I don't get it!

                                                    2. re: Cheese Boy

                                                      Oh yeah, Tom's was my go-to in college! Half-chocolate, half-coffee ice cream was their "famous" Broadway shake.

                                                      Tom's has two other points of fame people don't talk about so much... 1) it's the "Tom's" from Suzanne Vega's song "Tom's Diner" (hotly contested, but this is the real spot), and 2) there is a NASA office right upstairs.

                                                      1. re: ballulah

                                                        Oh yes, Tom's for chocolate shakes. Entire summer of our junior year, my twin sister (at Columbia) and I (at Barnard) went to Tom's several times a week for chocolate shakes. February my senior year, I go to Symposia, the Greek restaurant around the corner from Tom's, and I hear from across the room, "Ah, choc-o-lat meelk-shake!" Same waiter as at Tom's (same owners presumably).

                                                        Oh, and Suzanne Vega went to Barnard right up the street, so that is almost certainly her Tom's, plus the "bells of the cathedral" were those from St. John the Divine a couple of blocks away.

                                                  2. The chocolate milkshake at City Bakery is one of NY's best chocolate treats! Go towards the back on the right side where they have a counter and seats set up; that's where the shake machine is.

                                                    1. Can't comment on "best," but a shake from burger joint, together with a burger and fries, makes me very happy!

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: Blumie

                                                        I forgot about the Burger Joint shake--I agree, it's great.

                                                      2. The Strawberry Malt at Island Burgers. Does anywhere have a good oreo shake?

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: kam0424

                                                          It must be said, the Strawberry/Oreo "Crazy Shake" at Sassy's Sliders, is pretty darned good. (86th and 3rd)

                                                        2. Anyone know what happened to the Bespeckled Trout? (I heard about it on the boards for GREAT malts and shakes, but it seems to have disappeared.) =(

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: AndCalliope

                                                            Sadly, the Bespeckled Trout closed down. It was such an amazing gem of a place, with hard to find candies and a real-deal soda fountain bar. I totally miss it.

                                                            1. re: moxielady

                                                              Anyone know if this pplace was featured for egg creams on Boy Meets Grills?

                                                              1. re: elizabeththinks

                                                                You're thinking of the Soda Shop on Chambers Street.

                                                          2. blt burger has great shakes, alcoholic and nonalcoholic. I am appalled by the burgers but the shakes are so good I still go there to get them to go.

                                                            3 Replies
                                                            1. re: scanditrash

                                                              Anyone know where to get good frozen yogurt shakes?

                                                              1. re: jackieparis

                                                                NY Burger Company makes great fro yo shakes. I like the Elvis. Chocolate fro yo, peanut butter and banana added. Mmmm.

                                                                1. re: ballulah

                                                                  This sounds great! Thanks. I had a good fro yo shake at Cafe Lalo last week. It was vanilla yogurt with orange juice in it. So refreshing!

                                                            2. Just went to the new Ronnybrook Milk Bar in Chelsea Market and have to say the shake I had was in another league. You could really taste the clean freshness of the milk and cream. I had the blueberry-pomegranate flavor (which in and of itself was a little artificial, but the overall shake tasted awesome.) My BF had a daily special shake, chocolate with orange peel, which tasted just like one of those gourmet Perugina or similar chocolate bars with orange flavor, terrific. I want to try the 'apple pie a la mode' shake next.

                                                              1. I am by no means a milkshake expert at all. That having been said; chocolate milkshakes from a Mr. Softee truck are reliably delicious and creamy.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: jdream

                                                                  I second Mr. Softee. Love that theme music-dumdeedum, dumm dumm dumm, dumm, dumm dee dee dumm dumm dumm.

                                                                2. shopsin's! zach, kenny's son, makes a killer chocolate malt at the new spot in the essex street market. it's huge and comes with a bendy straw, to boot.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: jenniferlynn

                                                                    I agree that shopsin's is the best. they have the most flavors, and although they do not advertise this fact, they make their own ice cream.

                                                                  2. Peanut Butter & Co makes fantastic shakes - I love the vanilla and peanut butter combo.

                                                                    1. I really like the chocolate and banana shake at Vynl. It is a great combination.....

                                                                      1. Anyone had the pistachio ricotta one at Stand?

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: elizabeththinks

                                                                          I never did but I heard it isn't good because you get chunks of pistachios when you slurp it up and the consistency isn't good.

                                                                        2. yes--shopsins! also brgr on 7th ave uses Ronnybrook and does a stellar job. schnack in brooklyn does beer milkshakes--i like the vanilla one better than the chocolate (even though they use a stout--the vanilla works better in my opinion).

                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                          1. re: carrottop

                                                                            What is the bets flavor that Shopsins has?

                                                                            1. re: steakrules85

                                                                              their chocolate malt rocks! and although it's not a milkshake, the orange julius brings back some found, chalky memories ; )

                                                                              1. re: steakrules85

                                                                                Anyone tried Shopsin's blue cheese malted milkshake? This actually sounds like it could be really good. I've never been to Shopsin's but plan to go soon.

                                                                              2. re: carrottop

                                                                                I remember seeing that on Cooking in Brooklyn, I believe, with Alan Harding. A beer milkshake. Nice!

                                                                              3. I've done a survey of chocolate shakes at ice cream places (as opposed to restaurants), and the champ is Mary's Dairy (with the Killer Chocolate ice cream).
                                                                                2 locations:
                                                                                W 4th St. bet. 5th & 6th, and 1st Ave. bet. 9th & 10th.

                                                                                1. I am a BLT Burger guy...the shakes are fantastic, In particular the Peanut Butter

                                                                                  1. The Soda Shop on Chambers St. makes a great black & white.

                                                                                    1. Totally a tourist trap, I know (and what's up with the attitude, mr. bitchy hostess/hostman?), but you gotta love Serendipity 3's frozen hot chocolate!

                                                                                      I like to eats.