New York

Cocktail bars and more: What's trending on New York City's food scene?

As fans of cronuts and cake pops can attest, food trends come and go. So how can you tell which tastes are trending at this very moment?

We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp to uncover which eateries have been most discussed this month.

To find out who made the list, we looked at New York City businesses on Yelp by category and counted how many reviews each received. Rather than compare them based on number of reviews alone, we calculated a percentage increase in reviews over the past month, and tracked businesses that consistently increase their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers compared to past performance.

Read on to see which spots have the momentum heading into summer.


Photo: nir o./Yelp

Open since November of 2018, this Italian spot is trending compared to other businesses categorized as "Italian" on Yelp.

Citywide, Italian spots saw a median 2.3 percent increase in new reviews over the past month, but Nittis saw a 35.9 percent increase, maintaining a convincing 4.5-star rating throughout. Moreover, on a month-to-month basis Nittis' review count increased by more than 2,300 percent.

It's not the only trending outlier in the Italian category: Barca has seen a 31.2 percent increase in reviews.

Located at 523 Ninth Ave. (between 39th and 40th streets) in Hell's Kitchen, Nittis offers chicken Parmesan with pomodoro and mozzarella, grilled branzino stuffed with fennel and lasagna with ground beef and bechamel. (View the menu here.)

Village Square Pizza

Photo: daniel c./Yelp

The East Village's Village Square Pizza is also making waves. Open since March of 2019 at 147 Ave. A, the pizza spot has seen a 64.5 percent bump in new reviews over the last month, compared to a median review increase of 2.5 percent for all businesses tagged "Pizza" on Yelp.

Village Square Pizza offers pepperoni pizza, vegan slices, bruschetta and more. Add some garlic knots or calzones to your order as well. Over the past month, it's maintained a convincing 4.5-star rating among Yelpers.


Photo: lowerline/Yelp

Prospect Heights's Lowerline is the city's buzziest Southern spot by the numbers.

The Cajun and Southern spot opened at 794 Washington Ave. (between Sterling and Lincoln places) in March of 2018. It has increased its new review count by 11.9 percent over the past month, an outlier when compared to the median new review count of 1.4 percent for the Yelp category "Southern."

Lowerline offers oysters, shrimp po' boys and gumbo. It also serves classic Southern dishes like crawfish and red beans and rice. (View the menu here.)

Her Name was Carmen

Photo: her name was carmen/Yelp

SoHo's Her name was Carmen is currently on the upswing in the cocktail bar category on Yelp.

While businesses categorized as "Cocktail Bars" on Yelp saw a median 2.5 percent increase in new reviews over the past month, this cocktail bar and Latin American spot increased its by 41 percent—with its Yelp rating improving from three stars to 3.5 stars. Review counts increased by more than 230 percent on a month-to-month basis.

There's more abuzz in the world of New York City cocktail bars: Elsie Rooftop has seen a 21.3 percent increase in reviews.

Open for business at 527 Broome St. (between Thompson and Sullivan streets) since December of 2018, the business offers signature cocktails, like the Carmencita, which is made with mezcal and habanero, as well as small bites, including oysters, caviar, steak tartare and more. 

This story was created automatically using local business data, then reviewed and augmented by an editor. Click here for more about what we're doing. Got thoughts? Go here to share your feedback.

523 9th Ave