When I think of Spanish food a word comes to mind: rich. It is a cuisine composed of fresh ingredients available locally and that result in dishes that are both uncomplicated and mouthwatering even to the most discerning palate. I’m sure history has played a significant part on its culinary richness. After all, Spanish food has varied ancestry: Roman and Greek influences (the use of olive oil, and wine consumption and ultimate pairing at every meal); Moorish influence (gazpacho); Jewish influence (stews).
In New York City, a place of infinite options, how do you pick the right Spanish restaurant? You’re in luck! We’ve done it for you.
For an unforgettable dining experience—sometimes accompanied by flamenco—come to Socarrat. The chef will delight you with the some of the most exquisite and popular dishes from Spain, including tapas and paellas. The most popular paella at Socarrat is called arroz negro. This Valencian and Catalan paella has shrimp, calamari, scallops, white fish, piquillo pepper, fava beans and squid ink sofrito. Because of the squid ink sofrito, the paella is actually black! If you’ve never tried it, you’re certainly missing out! It is full of flavor.
259 West 19th Street, New York, NY 10011
Inspired by the energy of Barcelona’s renowned food market, El Mercado de la Boquería, Boquería serves market-driven authentic Spanish cuisine. Not only do they offer traditional Spanish dishes, such as tapas and paella, but also they have seasonal specials.
53 West 19th Street, New York, NY 10011
It seems like 19th Street is a very popular street to try Spanish cuisine in New York City! Sala One Nine offers a true and authentic Spanish culinary experience. In fact, its goal is to recreate the authenticity of Spanish cuisine and culture, and share a little taste of Spain. Speaking of taste, during the happy hour 4-7 p.m., you can get draft beer, Spanish wine, and Sala’s signature sangria at half the price.
35 West 19th Street, New York, NY 10011
As a Michelin-starred restaurant, La Vara provides the bold and improvisational nature of food and wine, while remaining original and authentic. Part of its authenticity relies on bringing the Jewish and Moorish influences from regional Spanish cuisine to New York City. La Vara’s dishes are perfumed with aromas of saffron, cumin, and orange blossom.
268 Clinton Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
If you want to try various dishes from different regions of Spain, come to El Boquerón! Besides the traditional, El Boquerón also provides many options for you, such as lamb specials, poultry, fish and shellfish. Don’t like meat? They also offer vegetarian platters. The ambience is friendly and the service is excellent. Right in Queens!
31-01 34th Avenue, Astoria, NY 11106
According to The New York Times, “Hard to recall a time before small plates, too, and harder still to find a New York restaurant where they are satisfying, one after another, as at Casa Mono.” That must’ve been the reason why The New York Times awarded it three stars in 2015 and why it received a Michelin star years earlier, in 2009. Located right next door is its sister restaurant, Bar Jamón. The two share a wine list of nearly 60 wines. Pick a special day, go to Casa Mono & Bar Jamón, and enjoy its irresistible Spanish cuisine.
52 Irving Place, New York, NY 10003
Do you want to go on a trip to Spain? If you are not ready, you can just to go to Huertas in the East Village in the meantime. Huertas is another Spanish restaurant recommended by The New York Time in 2014: “In general, the cooking at Huertas stands out for its pure, fresh flavors.” In order to provide an real Spanish experience, Huertas imports some seafood from Spain. Besides its tapas, you need to try the anchovy and the mussels escabeche awash in white vinegar and chopped aromatics.
107 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10003
Manolo Tapas was constructed with the utmost attention to detail, and with materials brought from Spain, most of which are collected from old Spanish structures. Upon entering the restaurant, you will be transported to Spain. Manolo Tapas has over 100 Spanish wines and over 50 imported beers. They also have a wide variety of domestic and imported liquors.
4165 Broadway, New York, NY 10033
The primary objective of La Nacional is to “promote, encourage and spread the spirit of fraternity and solidarity among Spanish and Hispanic-American residents of this country.” If this can be done through food, rest assured La Nacional does it—it has some of the best Spanish food offerings outside of Spain. The restaurant features their daily nine-course tasting menu and a four-course vegetable tasting menu, and the finest quality ingredients available. Complementing the menu is an award-winning wine list that boasts more than 2,000 bottles.
239 W 14th St New York, NY 10011
Do you love tapas? If you do, Tía Pol may be the one you’ll love. The restaurant might be small, but the food tastes like heaven! You will find patatas bravas (rough-cut potatoes with spicy aioli), pimientos estilo gernika (blistered green peppers with sea salt), garbanzos fritos (fried chickpeas), amongt many others. Let Tía Pol transport you to Spain…and beyond!
205 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10011