Hell’s Kitchen is one of New York City’s hottest neighborhoods, so we’ve partnered with travel blogger and former Hell’s Kitchen resident Angie Orth from Angie Away to get her tips on which restaurants, bars and activities to check out this summer.
The Big Apple will always hold a special place in my heart. As a former resident, it’s a place I return to often – and not just to see my friends. Between the food, the nightlife and the people, there’s an energy in New York City that you just can’t find anywhere else in the world.
In my fabulous days as a New Yorker, I lived in Hell’s Kitchen, a neighborhood filled with artists and entertainers sandwiched between 34th Street and 59th Street. With the bright lights of Broadway and Times Square flanking the eastern border, you can imagine what a lively spot it was – and still is!
Planning a visit to the city? Don’t miss my old stomping grounds in Hell’s Kitchen, a hotspot (pun intended!) for unbelievable cuisine, flea markets, nightlife and fun.
Hell’s Kitchen is much more “kitchen” than Hell. Foodies will find no shortage of options in this neighborhood!
Where to Eat in Hell’s Kitchen
Friedman’s (450 10th Avenue, 35th St)
If brunch is what you’re about, head over to Friedman’s for mimosas and fried chicken with cheddar waffles. I love their simple motto: “Eat good food.” Back in 2009 when the first location opened up in Chelsea Market, they made a point to be all gluten-free to create a haven for those who suffer from celiac disease.
City Sandwich (649 Ninth Ave. New York, NY 10036)
There’s nothing like a good, fresh sandwich when you’re exploring the city, and City Sandwich is flush with tasty choices. Inspired by Portuguese flavors with a New York twist, the sandwich selection will have your mouth watering and leave you wanting more… if you can handle the long line to order. Luckily, you can call ahead for pickup and they deliver, too. Made from scratch from bread baked daily with yogurt sauces and olive oil, check out the Franco with Mozzarella and Prosciutto or the MmmEatballs.
Gotham City Market (600 11th Ave New York, NY 10036)
From ice cream and coffee to sushi, ramen and tacos, Gotham City Market has you covered for just about any dining experience you could want. This food mecca is home to multiple restaurants so you can have a round-the-world culinary adventure with one taxi ride. I recommend a glass of wine and tapas from El Colmado followed by charcuterie and beers at the Cannibal. Cap it off with Salted Crack Caramel at Ample Hills Creamery.
Schmackary’s (362 W 45th St New York, NY 10036)
From a tiny apartment with online ordering only to a busy storefront on West 45th Street, Schmackary’s is home to 45+ unique cookie flavors. Based on one guy’s love for all things sweet, Zachary “Schmackary” Schmahl moved to NYC on a journey to master the art of the chocolate chip cookie and more. Sample Maple Bacon, Cookies & Cream, Sweet Corn, Mint Mojito and dozens more flavors. They are open for an extra hour Wednesday through Saturday, so you have access to some of these local favorites when you need it most – after Happy Hour! (I still can’t decide if that’s a good thing or not.)
Not all shows worth seeing are ON Broadway. Check out some of the smaller theaters in Hell’s Kitchen. (Pictured: New Amsterdam Theater)
What to Do in Hell’s Kitchen
Annex Markets Antiques & Flea Markets (West 39th Street between 9th & 10th Avenues)
Every weekend from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., antique-lovers, bargain hunters, prop masters, celebrities and tourists pop over to The Annex, home to more than one hundred vendors showcasing handmade crafts and old valuables. Take care though! A Saturday morning stroll could become an all-day event, and you might need an extra suitcase to cart all your treasures back home.
Ensemble Studio Theatre (549 West 52nd Street, 2nd Floor)
You probably aren’t going to get Hamilton tickets… sorry. But if you’re looking for local entertainment created by extraordinary artists, check out Ensemble Studio Theatre. EST was established to give prospective playwrights an outlet and a way to make their works known. If you want to experience a real Hell’s Kitchen staple, check availability online and purchase tickets for shows in advance – seats fill fast.
Drunk Shakespeare (The Lounge 300 W 43rd St)
Drunk Shakespeare takes one professional actor, a few shots of whiskey and a Shakespeare play to create an unforgettable evening. Shakespeare fans 21 and up can take part in 90 minutes of sloppy festivities. For an extra special experience, you upgrade your ticket to become the King or Queen. You’ll watch the show from a royal throne while being served handmade chocolates, caviar and Moet & Chandon. To book or not to book tickets? There’s really no question.
Hell’s Kitchen borders Times Square.
Where to Drink in Hell’s Kitchen
McGee’s (240 West 55 Street)
Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name. No, not Cheers pub – that’s Boston. In Hell’s Kitchen, the familiar haunt is McGee’s Irish Pub. This local favorite is the inspiration for McLaren’s Pub from . For Barney, Lily, Ted, Robin and Marshal fans, swing by for Mondays, where they feature the Suit Up Sandwich, the Bro Code Combo and “Woo” Wings.
Pocket Bar NYC (455 W 48th St New York, NY 10036)
Pocket Bar NYC is a homey spot to grab drinks before or after a Broadway show. This cozy atmosphere makes you feel as if you were at home, with Teddy Grahams in place of salted peanuts and very friendly service.
Dutch Fred’s (307 W 47th St New York, NY 10036)
For craft cocktails, craft beers and some top-notch service, Dutch Fred’s has a reputation as one of Hell’s Kitchen’s most popular bars. Sip on a Ginger Rogers, a Kinky Boots or any number of quirky cocktails while noshing on Thai deviled eggs, spicy Hawaiian flatbread and poutine.
Next time you check out NYC, don’t forget to add a visit to Hell’s Kitchen to your itinerary!
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