5 SECRET MENU ITEMS IN NYC YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT

Grandlife guide

5 SECRET MENU ITEMS IN NYC YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT

back to list

Behind the scenes in Manhattan restaurants, creative chefs are experimenting in their kitchens. Sometimes these experiments—new dishes, riffs on old favorites—are ready for an audience, but instead of being added to the menu, they are available as secret dishes only to those who know to ask. Here are some of our favorite off-menu items in lower Manhattan.

The Gotham Burger at Gotham Bar & Grill

Since 1984, the Michelin-rated Gotham Bar & Grill has lured crowds with caviar, seafood salad, and dry-aged steak. But there’s one menu item you won’t find on the regular dinner menu that locals love: the Gotham Burger. This decadent burger—a short rib and chuck patty, topped with sautéed cremini mushrooms, truffle pecorino, and truffle aioli—was once only available for lunch, but is now also served at the bar during dinner service.

12 E 12th St, New York, NY 10003; T. (212) 620-4020

Secret Sicilian Meatballs at Acme

For his secret menu dish, Italian-American Chef Brian Loiacono turned to one of his grandmother’s recipes for inspiration. Every evening, a limited number of Sicilian meatballs, made with veal, lamb, and pork in a tomato sauce topped with basil, are on offer—but be quick with your order, because they sell out fast. You might see spicy pork meatballs on the menu and think these are Granny’s recipe, but for the secret dish, you’ll need to ask for the off-menu Sicilian specialty.

9 Great Jones St, New York, NY 10012; T. (212) 203-2121

Chili Pasta at Lucky Strike

The copper bar at Lucky Strike is a cozy place to indulge in French classics from a salade niçoise with grilled fresh tuna to steak frites with Roquefort butter, but in-the-know guests have their eye elsewhere. While not always common for French-influenced bistros to serve notable pasta dishes, Lucky Strike is the exception to the rule. Join the insiders that sometimes look past the warm lentil salad, and croque monsieur in favor of the spicy chili pasta.

59 Grand St, New York, NY 10013; T. (212) 941-0772

Kimchi Stew at Momofuku Noodle Bar

Classics at Chef David Chang’s famous East Village noodle bar like pork buns with scallion and cucumber, or the Momofuku Ramen with pork belly and poached egg have achieved legendary status, but there’s another dish that should be on your radar: Kimchi stew; a bowl of braised kimchi and shredded pork topped with scallions and carrots.

171 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003; T. (212) 777-7773

Limited Edition Burger at Raoul’s

The roasted chicken and steak au poivre at Raoul’s, a French bistro on Prince Street, are well-known neighborhood favorites, but there’s an under-the-radar dish that locals keep to themselves: the au poivre burger. It started out originally as a limited, off-menu item with just 12 coveted burgers served at the bar per night. When Raoul’s starting serving brunch, the Raoul’s Burger au poivre became available in the dining room on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. A pepper-crusted patty is topped with triple-crème Saint-André cheese and served with pommes frites and au poivre sauce on the side.

180 Prince St, New York, NY 10012; T. (212) 966-3518

Words Jessica Colley Clarke

 

You May Also Like

New York Record Store Live Broadcasts events record labels commend Mexican Summer A1 Records Baby's All Right Baby TV The Lot Radio

Time for a Sonic Intervention

music
stories
Live broadcasts and rare releases—here’s what our favorite record labels, stores, and venues are up to. 
Downtown Cocktails to-go happy hour drinks new york

Happy Hour: Cocktails To-Go

stories
It's 5 o'clock somewhere...
Guide downtown delivery takeout wayan i sodi raoul's soho diner Miss lily's llama san il buco

Feed Me: Downtown Delivery & Takeout

food & drink
stories
Italian classics, bistro fare, island cooking and more—these local restaurants have you covered morning, noon and night.
Lower East Side New York shopping Boutique Designer Bode Maryam Nassir Zadeh Assembly Only NY Eckhaus Latta

Walk This Way: Boutique Shopping on the LES

shopping
stories
We’ve rounded up our favorite LES-based boutiques for your shopping pleasure. 
New York Spring Gardens Downtown Elizabeth Street Garden Gramercy Park Washington Square Park

Diggin' It: Downtown Garden Escapes

food & drink
stories
Lunch date, garden party, solo respite—these 5 outdoor spots have your alfresco needs covered.
Yayoi Kusama Cosmic Nature Brooklyn Botanical Garden may New York Art Exhibition

Spring Forward: Must-See Art Shows

art & design
stories
Art lovers, get that calendar app fired up and drop in these can’t-miss spring art shows.
Kerry Pieri Lauren McCarthy Gabrielle Korn Harpers Bazaar Nylon Editors Guide NYFW New York

NYFW: The Editors Have Spoken

fashion
stories
As the Fall Winter 2020 international runway collections kick off in New York, three heavyweight fashion editors share their insights.
Natural Organic wine Guide NYC Wildair Ten Bells Frenchette Racines Hemlock

Natural High: Where to Sip Organic Wine Downtown

food & drink
stories
If you ever needed a reason to drink wine, this is sure to be it.
Best Rate Promise
Soho Grand Hotel

310 West Broadway
New York, NY 10013

(212) 965-3000
The Roxy Hotel Tribeca

2 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10013

212.519.6600