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Our City Guides is from the point of view of the people we interview. A restaurant cannot be listed in our guides unless it is recommended by one of the tastemakers we’ve featured. We don’t want you to see the restaurant world through our eyes, but rather through the eyes of your favorite tastemakers in every industry. Why us? Why not them?

67 Orange Street, 2082 Frederick Douglass Blvd, Recommended by Danielle Brooks

67 Orange Street

Recommended by: Danielle Brooks (Actress)

This cozy Harlem lounge is inspired by Almacks, the first African-American-owned bar in New York City. The energetic space offers a vintage speakeasy feel complete with bespoke cocktails including concoctions like Earl Gray-infused gin. Grab something from the food menu such as the Lobster & Shrimp Mac n’ Cheese while you imbibe. www.67orangestreet.com

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Amy Ruth’s

Recommended by: Rutina Wesley (Actress)

This soul food sanctuary serves up no frills, delicious Southern home cooking classics. With one of its best sellers the “Rev. Al Sharpton” (fried or smothered chicken and waffles), Ruth’s is not just a tribute to the owner’s grandmother, but also a number of noteworthy African Americans. www.amyruthsharlem.com

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Bad Horse Pizza

Recommended by: Melissa Fumero (Actress)

Made-to-order thin crust pizza is the specialty at this cozy Harlem spot. An elevated array of toppings, as well as a large list of speciality pies make this the perfect place to stop by when that hankering for good pizza comes your way. The pastas and salads are also worth noting, as well as the [...]

Bier International, 2099 Frederick Douglass Blvd, Recommended by Renée Elise Goldsberry

Bier International

Recommended by: Renée Elise Goldsberry (Actress)

This family run Harlem beer garden is a favorite among locals. With great outdoor seating, a solid menu – that includes a large selection of specialty sausages – and nearly fifty international and domestic beers it’s a must-visit in the South Harlem area. www.bierinternational.com

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Corner Social

Recommended by: Dennis Cornick (Maitre d’, Miss Lily’s)

A restaurant and bar in Harlem, Corner Social is a casual hang-out place with classic New York nightlife décor in addition to outdoor seating. They use ingredients from local vendors for their comfort food filled menu, have craft beers on tap, and serve everything from brunch to late night dining. Some nights the restaurant is [...]

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El Caribeno

Recommended by: Victoria Justice (Actress)

This hole-in-the-wall in a Spanish Harlem favorite for delicious Latin American food. You can’t go wrong with a casual dinner at this authentic spot; order the rotisserie chicken, rice and beans, and the avocado salad (they also have a full bar).

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Harlem Shake

Recommended by: David Burtka (Actor)

First things first: you do not have to do the eponymous dance if you wish to dine at Harlem Shake, a diner up in Harlem that serves everything you would expect from a restaurant of its kind: hamburgers, hot dogs, milk shakes, and fried chicken sandwiches. The retro diner tends to get loud and crowded [...]

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Lido

Recommended by: Melissa Fumero (Actress)

Located in the heart of Harlem Renaissance, this  gem serves mouthwatering, homemade Italian fare. Classic and seasonal dishes make up the menu, and everything is fresh and delicious. Although the food is upscale, the atmosphere is comfortable and relaxed. Additionally, the bottomless brunch on the weekends is worthwhile. Make a Reservation. www.lidoharlem.com

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Rao’s

Recommended by: Aliza Licht (DKNY PR Girl)

The fact that Rao’s is only open for dinner Monday through Friday isn’t the main reason it’s so hard to get a reservation here. Regulars have standing reservations, and there are only ten tables, so book ahead to eat at this warm, authentic, friendly, and intimate restaurant serving fresh Neapolitan cuisine. www.raos.com

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Red Rooster

Recommended by: Dennis Cornick (Maitre d’, Miss Lily’s), Joe Zee (Creative Director of Elle Magazine), David Burtka (Actor), Carla Hall (Chef, TV Personality)

With live music some evenings and a lively atmosphere all evenings, Red Rooster Harlem is a fun place to visit for great drinks or soul food. Some dishes come directly from the neighborhood, and some come inspired from chef Marcus Samuelsson’s Swedish Grandmother who taught him to cook. Make a reservation.  www.redrooster.com

Sylvia’s

Recommended by: David Burtka (Actor)

Google “best soul food in New York City,” and Sylvia’s will surely be amongst the first to pop up. The Harlem mainstay has been an icon since 1962, and continues to attract large crowds of locals, tourists, and a ton of Columbia students. Hot ribs fall off the bone, pork chops call for finger-licking, and the [...]

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The Cecil

Recommended by: Carla Hall (Chef, TV Personality)

This restaurant in the heart of Harlem showcases African cooking techniques with beautiful results. Unlike any other menu in Manhattan, the bold and exotic flavors in every dish make this restaurant a must-visit in that neighborhood. Chef Carla Hall is a huge fan, and recommends the Coriander Roasted Carrots, Plantain Kelewele, Collard Greens Salad, and [...]

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Tsion Cafe

Recommended By: Dawn-Lyen Gardner (Actress)

Ethiopian food is having a major moment right now in New York, and for good reason! We love the cafe for it’s injera rolls, and the shakshuka is a hit at brunch. Go when it’s warm; you’re going to want to sit on their patio. www.tsioncafe.com