The Best Restaurants Near Madison Square Park

The reopening of Eleven Madison Park isn't the only reason to visit
October 27, 2017
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by Zagat Staff

Madison Square Park is a magnet for food lovers for a few reasons: It houses the original Shake Shack (which still has the longest lines), it's the home of the annual Big Apple BBQ (in June) and it's also where you can find tasting menu mecca, Eleven Madison Park (recently reopened and renovated). But there are plenty of other reasons to eat in and around this major tourist destination. Check out a few of the best restaurants nearby below.

Cosme
Mexican · Flatiron · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.1 · Service 4.2

“Creative, brilliant” contemporary Mexican cuisine from chef Enrique Olvera comes in “chic” , “modern” quarters at this “über-trendy” Flatiron “scene” ; you’ll “spend a bundle” – assuming you score a “hard-to-come-by” reservation – and the “quintessentially ‘buzzy’ room” gets “loud” , but most hardly notice after an “original, delicious” cocktail or two.
Eleven Madison Park
Flatiron · $$$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.8 · Service 4.8

“Brilliant as ever” , Daniel Humm’s New American “knockout” on Madison Square Park is “a total indulgence” where a “spectacular” tasting menu with pairings from a “massive” wine list provides a “culinary adventure” that’s “expertly” served in a “magnificent” art deco space; the “jumbo bill” is a given, but “throw the budget out the window” “you can’t afford to miss this place.”
Gramercy Tavern
American · Flatiron · $$$$
Food 4.8 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.7

You can rely on “top-class” dining with “no gimmicks” at Danny Meyer’s enduring Flatiron New American, where chef Michael Anthony’s “outstanding” set menus are presented by “eminently suave” staffers in an “upscale-country” dining room arrayed with “gorgeous” flower displays; it’s “not cheap by any means” , though the front tavern offers a “reasonable” à la carte menu in a “colorful” walk-in setting; P.S. gratuity is now built into menu prices.
ILILI
Mediterranean · NoMad · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.2 · Service 4.2

“Modern takes” on “traditional” Lebanese cooking come with “creative enhancements” at this NoMad “scene” , where the cocktails are equally “inventive” ; the “cathedral-sized” , wood-lined space is made for “big groups” , but its “nightclub vibe” has “noise” to match (hint: upstairs nooks are “more sedate” ).
Junoon
Indian · Flatiron · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.2

You can “dine like a prince” at this “upmarket” Flatiron “oasis” offering “innovative” Indian food with “rich, complex flavors” in a “gorgeous” front lounge and main dining room; tabs are “higher than average” , but “precise” service and a sommelier who “knows his stuff” up the appeal.
Marta
Pizza · NoMad · $$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.1 · Service 4.2

Another “stunner” from Danny Meyer, this “happening” Italian in NoMad’s Redbury Hotel is known for its “perfectly crisp” Roman pizzas adorned with “first-rate” toppings, but the wood-fired entrees are considered “just as good” ; the “high-ceiling, high-energy” space and “hip crowd” add up to a “noisy” , “fun” time.
Shake Shack
Burger · Flatiron · $
Food 4.0 · Decor 3.2 · Service 3.4

“Premium fast food” is the draw at this “widely syndicated” Danny Meyer chain, offering “mouthwatering” burgers, “rich shakes” and other “upgraded” eats (plus beer and wine) at a “manageable price” ; they’re “a magnet” for “legions of fans” who can create “hectic scenes” and “insane lines” , especially at the “landmark” Madison Square Park shack “where it all started.”
The Breslin
British · NoMad · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

“Haute comfort food” reigns at April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman’s “NY version of an English pub” in the Ace Hotel, dishing up “elevated” , “unapologetically hearty” fare (including a “perfect” lamb burger) to the “hip throngs” ; despite a surplus of “attitude” , most find it “worth” the “steep” bill.
The Clocktower Restaurant
New American · Flatiron · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.2

“A bit of a scene” , this “chic take on a supper club” in the Flatiron’s Edition Hotel serves “flavorful” New American cuisine with a “British tilt” in a “gorgeous old-world space” with an “ultrahip” billiards room; it’s “firing on all cylinders – and charging for it” , so some just stop in for the “unbelievable” cocktails.
Upland
Bar · Murray Hill · $$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.3

This “upbeat” Murray Hill Californian “lives up to the hype” with “accessible” but “modern and creative” Italian-inspired cooking; set in a “beautiful, large room” (try to “score a booth” ) with a “busy” front bar, it’s an overall “people-pleasing” choice, which explains why it’s “tough to get in” (the “tantalizing” brunch is easier).