photo credit: Noah Devereaux

Elio’s image



Upper East Side

$$$$Perfect For:Business MealsClassic EstablishmentDinner with the ParentsImpressing Out of TownersPeople WatchingSee And Be SeenDate Night
Earn 3x points with your sapphire card

Included In

Elio’s is an old-school Italian restaurant on the Upper East Side that’s been around since the ‘80s, and the biggest draw here is the high likelihood of seeing someone famous. Yes, this is the same Elio’s where Tom Sellick famously left a $2,020 tip on a $204 meal. They don’t play music and the tables are crammed very close together, which highlights this spot’s best menu offering: eavesdropping. Expect to hear conversations about someone’s agent or someone’s hedge fund while you dig into an order of $30 fried calamari. 

The food at Elio’s is reliably alright (although the food isn’t really the point here). The salads are pretty good—heavy on greens and light on dressing, if you're into that sort of thing. For mains, stick to one of the many spaghetti dishes, or something appealing from the list of specials. The off-menu chicken parm will get the job done, but it feels like chicken parm-lite. We wish it had more sauce, more cheese, and overall more flavor. Elio’s also makes a good but extremely boozy tiramisu. You’ll easily spend over $200 on a dinner for two, especially if you order drinks, but can you really put a price on feeling like you’re the one of the people Gossip Girl is talking about when she coos “Hey, Upper East Siders?” You can. It’s around the same price as dinner at Elio’s. 

Included In

Suggested Reading

Bemelmans Bar image

Bemelmans Bar

If you want to pretend you’re in a hybrid Gossip Girl and F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, Bemelmans Bar on the Upper East Side is the place to do it.

The interior of Emilio's Ballato.

The long line and the celebrity guests at this classic Nolita Italian restaurant get all the attention. But you should come for the food.

Peter Luger Steak House image

It’s easy to convince yourself that you love Peter Luger. It’s steak and bacon and ice cream. What’s not to love? A lot, it turns out.

Infatuation Logo


2024 © The Infatuation Inc. All Rights Reserved.
The views and opinions expressed on The Infatuation’s site and other platforms are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of (or endorsement by) JPMorgan Chase. The Infatuation and its affiliates assume no responsibility or liability for the content of this site, or any errors or omissions. The Information contained in this site is provided on an "as is" basis with no guarantees of completeness, accuracy, usefulness or timeliness.


Get it on Google PlayDownload on the App Store