Recently, we noticed something: none of you like to wear pants anymore.
We don't mean that everyone's walking around New York in their underwear (yet), but that joggers, leggings, and sweatshirts are a pretty common manner of attire to walk around in these days. Thank Mark Zuckerberg? Who knows.
With that in mind, here's our guide to restaurants throughout the city where you'd be perfectly welcome in your workout gear. No judgment on whether you actually worked out or not.
Your friend convinced you to try that JumpRopeBodyFit class on ClassPass and the teacher yelled at you with an extremely shrill voice the entire time. You need to feed yourself well, and would be wise to consider Coppelia, 24-hour Latin diner on 14th Street. It's extremely casual, but serves dishes a little more interesting than your standard diner eggs, pancakes, and kind of weird Cobb salad. Huevos Rancheros for dinner are a good idea.
You had to run some errands on the Upper East Side, and you dressed like you were going to class in college. No judgment. That said, you'd still like to eat somewhere, but where your hoodie will still be welcome. The Upsider - which makes a very good avocado toast, as well as things like kale salads and a burger, is a nice laid back spot that will welcome you arms wide open.
Westville basically invented the "restaurant you can eat at in your gym clothes" concept, and has started a small empire on the concept. The vegetable market plates always work if you're taking the health thing seriously, and the burgers and sandwiches work if you're not.
If it's a Saturday afternoon and you're already hangry, Penelope is not your spot. The best brunch place in Murray Hill, predictably, is full of every resident of Windsor Court. But on weeknights, it's a good move for an easy and fulfilling but still very casual dinner.
Seamore's can adapt for a real night out with a few drinks, but can also work without judgment when you haven't showered or are just doing that "haven't showered" look. Is that still a thing? Either way, Seamore's serves the kind of fresh, wholesome food you could eat every Wednesday night for the rest of eternity.
To know what you need to know about Timna, we'll quote from our review: "Timna's space is a little one in the East Village, with enough red brick and air plants to look hip enough for your Friday night plans, but casual enough that you can roll in after work for an easy Tuesday night dinner." The other thing you need to know about this modern Israeli restaurant is that they serve bread in a flower pot.
By CHLOE is vegan, but unlike other meat-free spots out there, this place actually makes legitimately tasty food you actually might want to consume several times a week. We're not entirely convinced that makes it all that healthy from a caloric standpoint, but you can probably convince your friends otherwise.
We once called soba the Solange of Japanese noodles. Not quite as well-known or fetishized over, but still objectively awesome. This is a funky, quirky spot, and it's possible to construct a meal that's at least sort of healthy.
Soba-ya is a soba restaurant, which, as previously discussed, makes it less likely than ramen to quadruple your cholesterol. But our favorite thing to eat here are actually the rice bowls - go for the spicy salmon or salmon sashimi versions. And feel free to go in your comfy pants.
Should you find yourself in the East Village looking for a Casual Carb Situation (trademarking that), consider directing yourself to the dumplings at Mimi Cheng's. It's a nice place to hang, and the dumplings are great - go boiled chicken if you want something a little lighter. Go fried pork if you don't.
Greenwich Village is kind of like EPCOT of fast casual restaurants: there's pretty much every possible permutation. One of our favorites? Tortaria, a Mexican spot specializing in sandwiches. It's an extremely low key spot, but they do have a full bar.
Egg Shop is a complete disaster at weekend brunch. The place is tiny, and waits become unmanageable very quickly. That said, it's usually close to empty at dinner - and for god's sake, they have something on the menu called a Spandex Bowl.
Let's try a mental exercise: imagine there was a place that served affordable, healthy, satisfying sushi that you knew would never end up tasting like it had been sitting out for three days. Where the spicy tuna was never at risk of being stringy and the yellowtail was never a little too hard. Such a place exists, and here's how they do it: they don't serve serve tuna or yellowtail at all. Beyond Sushi is vegan, and once you get over the general blasphemy of that fact, it actually turns out to be really, really good.
You decided to go to a class at Yogaworks, and the person in front of you farted. You'll survive, but you also need to eat something tasty, and possibly have a cocktail, just to shake it off. Direct yourself to Lovely Day, a Thai-ish spot in Nolita. The offerings are pretty simple here - pad thai, a few currys, a not-particularly-Thai-but-still-enjoyable fried chicken dish - but all of it is consistent and satisfying.
You're wandering midtown after work, unsure of where to get an affordable, sort of healthyish meal. Unsure, that is, until you get to Glaze. Yet another fast casual spot with a very specific speciality, Glaze does teriyaki bowls with different proteins as toppings (salmon, steak, chicken, etc.) and they're all quite good, and quite reasonably priced.
Greenpoint Fish and Lobster is part restaurant, but also part market, which we're pretty sure makes it fine to wear whatever you want here. Sit at the bar and eat some of the better lobster rolls and fish tacos around.
The great thing about gym clothes is that they're also basically eating pants. Go in on some fried chicken and waffles at Pies 'n' Thighs, and never look back. At least until you have to put your jeans back on.
In some cases, it's great to be pretty good at a lot of things. Like when you're applying to college. In other cases, it's great to just be extremely good at one thing. Bar Bolinas is a place that's extremely good at one thing. That one thing is being somewhere to eat a burger outside. Eating burgers outside generally should not be a fancy affair, and that's very much the case here.
This one's probably the nicest spot on the list, and we don't recommend showing up in sweatpants here if your friend decides to have their birthday at one of the booths upstairs. But we also think you could probably definitely get away with eating a bowl of pasta in the bar downstairs wearing whatever you like. Especially during brunch.
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