11 New Black-Owned Restaurants In NYC
A place for BBQ and live music in Sugar Hill, a fun Haitian restaurant in Soho, and more new Black-owned spots to check out.
If you’re looking for some new Black-owned restaurants, bars, and cafes to check out, here are some exciting ones that opened over the past year. From a few spots in Bed-Stuy that are perfect for casual dates to a massively popular UWS restaurant that’s single-handedly making Lincoln Center cool again, these are the places you should know about.
photo credit: Angela Bankhead
Hav & Mar
Located in Chelsea’s historic Starrett–Lehigh Building, Marcus Samuelsson’s Hav & Mar is “a reflection of Black joy and excellence,” with an emphasis on Black, BIPOC, and LGBTQ+ farmers and vendors. The name is a nod to Samuelsson’s Swedish and Ethiopian roots, but the menu has a range of other influences. Hang out in the spacious dining room decorated with colorful mermaids from artist Derrick Adams, and eat some blue cornbread, berbere-cured salmon, and a seafood-topped waffle served with maple chimichurri.
Kwame Onwuachi’s memoir Notes From a Young Black Chef has been made into a movie. That’s impressive, but what’s even more impressive is Onwuachi’s new restaurant in David Geffen Hall on the Upper West Side. Tatiana brings something new to the city, with food inspired by Onwuachi’s Afro-Caribbean heritage and life growing up in NYC. The menu has a mix of things like egusi dumplings and short rib pastrami suya, and the space feels like a quiet nightclub that just happens to be at Lincoln Center. This is currently one of the toughest reservations in New York City, and for good reason.
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photo credit: Madelynne Boykin
At Slutty Vegan in Fort Greene, you might get called slut or a virgin. But don't get offended and ask to talk to the manager. That's just what they say at this popular chain from Atlanta. ("Sluts" are customers, and "virgins" are first-time customers.) All of the food here is plant-based, and the menu has a variety of messy burgers with everything from vegan shrimp to guacamole—but our favorite thing is the cheese steak with jalapeños and faux provolone. Grab one to go at this counter-service spot, and keep an eye out for an upcoming Harlem location.
photo credit: Joco Media
Filé Gumbo Bar
The signature gumbo at Filé Gumbo Bar was inspired by chef and owner Eric McCree’s grandfather. It’s made with a roux base that’s stewed for hours, and it’s chilled for two days to let the flavors develop. Get that gumbo—and be sure to go for the “all-in” option with chicken, andouille, crab, and shrimp. Other standout items at this Cajun/Creole restaurant in Tribeca include the sausage board and extra creamy pimento cheese. Bring a group and sit on a mustard-yellow banquette, or come by yourself and have some jambalaya at the bar.
photo credit: David A. Lee
Charles Pan-Fried Chicken
In 2022, beloved Harlem institution Charles Pan-Fried Chicken got a big revamp with two new locations: one on the Upper West Side and another on 145th Street. As per tradition, their chicken is fried in big cast-iron skillets, and this process results in tender, juicy meat with crispy skin that isn’t too greasy. You should, of course, get some chicken—but don’t skip the collard greens and black eyed peas. The cornbread is also worth going out of your way for, but no need to order it. Every plate and combo comes with a piece.
Le Paris Dakar
On the next warm afternoon when you’re free of work obligations and want to sit outside with a Nutella-filled crepe, head to the newest location of Le Paris Dakar in Greenpoint. In addition to sweet crepes, this French/Senegalese cafe serves a ton of savory versions with fillings like brie and prosciutto, as well as some baked goods, salads, and sandwiches. There isn’t much room inside, but there are a few tables on the sidewalk patio where you can hang out and watch people getting off the G train.
Dick & Janes Bar Room
Dick & Jane’s is one of the most charming bars in NYC, and the owners also run a nearby spot called Baby Jane. Both places are perfect for just about everything (cocktails, first dates, etc.)—but they aren’t big enough for groups. That’s what Dick & Jane’s Bar Room is for. This roomy Bed-Stuy bar has brick walls, a long wooden bar, and a bunch of tables spread throughout, and it feels like a dark, lively neighborhood hang. It’s the kind of place where you can catch up with friends, eat a good burger, and hear a Beyoncé album front to back.
Do Not Disturb
Do Not Disturb managed to snag one of the most iconic spaces in the West Village. Located in the former home of the Beatrice Inn, this restaurant speakeasy is in a semi-hidden basement on West 12th Street, and it has two interconnected dining rooms. One is dark and moody with velvet chairs and big red booths, and the other is small, bright, and loungy. There’s also an Art Deco-inspired bar area up front, and it’s a great place to eat a smashburger or a hamachi tostada while you listen to a soundtrack of lovers' rock, soul, and hip hop.
For their second location, the team behind Zanmi chose a quiet block on the far western edge of Soho. Like the original in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, this is a great place to eat Haitian food—and it’s surprisingly easy to get a table. You can walk in with a group any night of the week, drink some Haitian rum, and eat big chunks of crispy griot with sausage and plantains. The mural-filled room is bright and festive, and there are even a few board games you can play (although the Scrabble tiles were MIA the last time we stopped by).
The Porch in Sugar Hill is an-purpose place. This BBQ restaurant is run by musicians and doubles as a music venue where you can see some of the city’s best jazz artists. You can stop in for a quick drink, or you can come for a night out and listen to live music while you eat some shrimp beignets and fatty smoked brisket. The space feels like a casual wine bar/cafe (with clubby blue lighting at night), and there's a patio with picnic tables out front. Live music happens from Wednesday through Sunday with no cover charge.
Cocktail Bedstuy is secretly one of the best cocktail bars in Brooklyn. Located on a relatively quiet stretch of Halsey Street, it’s where you should go for a nerdy drink made by bartenders who know what they’re doing. Grab one of the signature house cocktails, and enjoy it in the dark, narrow space where people stand shoulder-to-shoulder on busier nights. There are a few tables in the back if you want to sit down, and there’s a pleasant backyard for the warmer months of the year.