Curious where New York City's in-the-know crowd is eating and drinking? It's easy to spot lines out the door, but some underlying trends are harder to see.
We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp to deduce which local businesses have been in the spotlight 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 increased their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers compared to past performance.
Read on to see which spots are getting plenty of attention, right now.
Open since December 2019, this outpost of the fast-casual vegetarian chain — which has restaurants on the East and West coasts, as well as in Chicago — is trending compared to other businesses categorized as "American (Traditional)" on Yelp.
Citywide, traditional American spots saw a median 1.4% increase in new reviews over the past month. Veggie Grill only recently appeared on Yelp, but while many new businesses get reviews slowly, it has seen a surge.
Located at 12 W. 23rd St. (between Fifth Avenue and Avenue of the Americas) in the Flatiron District, Veggie Grill offers veggie-friendly versions of comfort food favorites. Stop in for Beyond burgers, plant-based "wings," nachos, grain bowls and more.
Whether or not you've been hearing buzz about Williamsburg's Seven Seeds, the Mediterranean restaurant is a hot topic according to Yelp review data.
While businesses categorized as "Mediterranean" on Yelp saw a median 1.5% increase in new reviews over the past month, Seven Seeds appeared on Yelp relatively recently. Many new businesses struggle to gain reviews, but it has seen a surge of interest.
Open in The Williamsburg Hotel at 96 Wythe Ave. since July 2019, Seven Seeds is helmed by chef Melissa O’Donnell, a five-time recipient of the Michelin Bib Gourmand award. O'Donnell's menu includes daily breakfast, lunch and dinner offerings, as well as a list of wines and craft cocktails. Check out morning options like the Mediterranean breakfast platter and the shakshuka; daytime dishes like grain bowls, lamb shawarma and homemade pita and hummus; and dinner fare like the house burger and the whole roasted branzino.
Seven Seeds is open from 7 a.m.–10:30 p.m. on Monday-Thursday, 7 a.m.–11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and noon–10:30 p.m. on Sunday.
The Upper East Side location of Detroit-style pizzeria Emmy Squared is also making waves. Open since December 2019 at 1426 Third Ave. (at the corner of Third Avenue and 81st Street), this outpost of the Brooklyn-based pizzeria, which also has locations in Philadelphia and Nashville, is relatively new to Yelp but has seen a surge of new reviews, while all businesses tagged "Pizza" on Yelp saw an increase of 1.9% for new reviews in the past month.
Here's more about the business, from its history section on Yelp: "Emmy Squared Pizza, co-founded by Emily Hyland and executive chef Matthew Hyland, takes pride in choosing fresh, high-quality ingredients and creating incredible flavor combinations for their elevation of Detroit-style pizza. The crispy, cheesy borders and light, airy dough of these square crusts have made passionate converts of pizza lovers far from Detroit."
This location of Emmy Squared serves up 14 different specialty pies, with such toppings as mushrooms, sausage, Brussels sprouts and even Nashville-style hot chicken. Over the past month, it's seen its Yelp rating tick down from four stars to 3.5 stars.
Emmy Squared is open from 11:30 a.m.–10 p.m. on Sunday-Thursday and 11:30 a.m.–11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
The East Village's Boilery is the city's buzziest seafood spot by the numbers.
Boilery, which opened at 58 Third Ave. (between 10th and 11th streets) in September 2019, increased its new review count by a remarkable 129.3% over the past month, an outlier when compared to the median new review count of 1.5% for the Yelp category "Seafood." It outperformed the previous month by gaining 13.2 times more reviews than expected based on past performance.
The fourth Manhattan location of the local restaurant, the East Village Boilery offers a full menu of boiled, grilled and fried seafood. Try the crispy catfish, the shrimp po' boy, the surf and turf, the grilled whole fish or the "near-famous" 5-pound boil, featuring a pound each of shrimp, littleneck clams, snow crab, king crab and Maine lobster.
This location of Boilery is open from noon–10:30 p.m. on Sunday-Thursday and noon–11:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
Middle Village's Burrito Blvd is currently on the upswing in the Mexican category on Yelp.
While businesses categorized as "Mexican" on Yelp saw a median 1.8% increase in new reviews over the past month, this Mexican spot saw a surge in new reviews despite being relatively new to Yelp.
Open for business at 72-64 Metropolitan Ave. since December 2019, Burrito Blvd serves a full array of Mexican street food favorites, such as tacos and burritos, made with naturally raised meats and fresh-made corn tortillas.
Burrito Blvd is open from 11 a.m.–9 p.m. daily.