photo credit: Noah Devereaux

Freemans image



Lower East Side

$$$$Perfect For:Date NightPrivate DiningBrunch
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When it opened at the end of a graffiti-covered alley on the LES in 2004, Freemans was a really big deal, and its popularity was warranted. Fast forward a couple of decades, and not much has changed. The dark, deer antler-filled space still looks like a hunting lodge owned by a survivalist, and when you see the crispy brussels, kale salad, and burrata on the menu, you’ll feel like it’s still 2004. The food is mostly uninteresting, but the generously-portioned dishes like mussels in paprika butter broth, hot artichoke dip, and duck confit are deeply satisfying. It’s much easier to score a table here now, so remember Freemans the next time every currently-hot restaurant is completely booked. This place is a solid backup—and a pretty good first choice too.

Freemans image

photo credit: Kenny Yang

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Suggested Reading

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Wildair is a casual wine bar on the Lower East Side, attached to the acclaimed tasting menu restaurant Contra.

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Corner Bar is an upscale American bistro in a Lower East Side hotel where you can eat steak au poivre and oysters Rockefeller.

The exterior of Gem Wine. A restaurant door, with red and white striped awning

Gem Wine is a Lower East Side wine bar where you can share seasonal food with your date, while sharing a table with another date.

a spread of dishes at gem wine, including mushroom schnitzel, roasted sunchokes, a fluke crudo, and a salt cod beignet

From old-school staples to exciting newcomers, these are our favorite spots on the Lower East Side.

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