clock menu more-arrow no yes
Cole Giordano

The Best Restaurants, Cafes, and Attractions of Latin New York

View as Map
This advertising content was produced in collaboration between Vox Creative and our sponsor, without involvement from Vox Media editorial staff.

Julie Schwietert Collazo, a bilingual writer and journalist who covers Latin American culture, politics, and food, travels all over the Americas to report on people, places, and experiences. But she has enjoyed some of the best food, culture, and camaraderie that Latin Americans have to offer in her own backyard, New York City. Here are a few of her favorite spots to indulge in the fun, flavor, and friendship of Latin New York.

Read More

1. La Nacional

Copy Link
239 W 14th St
New York, NY 10011
(212) 627-4770
Visit Website
Come World Cup time, this is the place to watch the beautiful game. Passionate fans, including old-time members of the Spanish Benevolent Society, which is housed upstairs (and has been there since the 1800s), come here to enjoy matches and linger over pans of expertly prepared paella and steaming bowls of caldo gallego, a stew of white beans, chorizo, and kale. You don't have to wait for the World Cup to stop by; the restaurant hosts tango and flamenco nights every week. The restaurant is undergoing a transition — it's scheduled to turn its kitchen over to a rotating cast of visiting chefs from Spain come November — so stay tuned for more upcoming attractions and mouthwatering events.
Cole Giordano

2. Coppelia

Copy Link
207 W 14th St
New York, NY 10011
(212) 858-5001
Visit Website
Chef Julian Medina is perhaps best known for his Mexican restaurants: Toloache, with three Manhattan locations, and Tacuba in Astoria and Manhattan. But don't forget about his 24-hour diner, named for the famed Havana ice cream emporium, in Chelsea. He bills Coppelia as a Cuban restaurant/diner, but the menu draws on plenty of Mexican dishes, too, such as huevos rancheros and flautas de pollo. I'll confess: I stop at Coppelia for an oxtail empanada and cortadito (and the excellent pan-Latin music playlist: think Marc Anthony and Gente de Zona) before I hit the gym. A DJ spins beats on Friday and Saturday from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m..
Cole Giordano

3. Café Habana

Copy Link
17 Prince St
New York, NY 10012
(212) 625-2001
Visit Website
If I'm honest, New York City does not do Cuban food so well. The exception — and the closest you'll get to Havana in New York — is Sean Meenan's Café Habana, a diner-style restaurant in Soho inspired by the Mexico City coffee shop where Fidel Castro and Che Guevara planned the Cuban revolution. This buzzy spot serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as weekend brunch; the menu channels Cuba and Mexico in dishes such as the Cuban sandwich and the sincronizada, a black-bean and lemon-cilantro flour tortilla with mozzarella cheese, avocado, crema, and salsa verde. There’s also a cocktail menu that draws from Cuba and Mexico (order a Mojito on the rocks or the Jarritos Cooler).
Cole Giordano

4. Despaña Soho

Copy Link
408 Broome St
New York, NY 10013
(212) 219-5050
Visit Website
True, you can find almost any ingredient from any part of the world in New York City, but Despaña is the place to shop for all things Spanish and Catalan. Plus, the Soho shop also has a café where you can order a perfectly pulled espresso and munch on a bocadito while you check out the dry goods inventory — and the cheeses, and wines, and the chorizos. In summer months, you can feast on paella during Despaña's “Summer Paella Saturdays.” Two big paelleras (pans used specifically for cooking paella) are cooked up and served to guests on a first-come, first-serve basis. Since the type of paella changes each weekend (there are chicken, seafood, black, and mixed paellas) and it’s the most authentic paella you’ll find in New York City, many guests are repeat visitors. And any time of year, master jamón carver Jaime Guerra teaches classes on the fine art of slicing those gorgeous (and expensive) piernas de jamón.
Cole Giordano

5. Subrosa

Copy Link
63 Gansevoort St
New York, NY 10014
Live Latin music is the house specialty at this intimate Meatpacking District venue that opened in late 2014. There are no bad seats here, and the atmosphere is always warm and friendly. The in-house musicians, Cuban percussionist Pedrito Martinez and his band, perform several times a month; the events calendar is rounded out by artists from all over Latin America and Latino USA, including an all-woman New York mariachi band, Flor de Toloache. There's a limited but tasty menu of small bites, mostly inspired by Spain (a charcuterie and cheese plate and gambas al ajillo, a Catalan garlic shrimp dish, for example), as well as cocktail service that reflects the reach of Subrosa's Latinidad; drinks are named for Latin American and Spanish cities. Can’t get to Havana yourself yet? Order the “La Habana,” which blends rum and pineapple juice.
Cole Giordano

6. Instituto Cervantes

Copy Link
211 E 49th St
New York, NY 10017
(212) 308-7720
Visit Website
If you're familiar with the name “Instituto Cervantes,” it's probably because the international organization offers language classes from New York to New Delhi. But Instituto Cervantes isn't just for Spanish immersion (though, yes, it offers that, too). Its New York site, located in an elegant Midtown townhouse, has a small but peaceful garden, a library where you can read newspapers and magazines from Latin America, and a full calendar of events that may surprise New Yorkers who don't know about this cultural gem. Recent guests have included the Roca brothers, of El Celler de Can Roca (currently ranked No. 2 on the World's 50 Best Restaurants list), and Mexican journalist Lydia Cacho. The Instituto is currently hosting a gastronomic film series — coming up on October 19 is “Mugaritz BSO,” a documentary about the Michelin-starred restaurant in San Sebastián, Spain — and offers weekly and monthly wine tasting seminars for a reasonable fee.
Cole Giordano

7. Bronx Museum of the Arts

Copy Link
1040 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY 10456
(718) 681-6000
Visit Website
Since its founding in 1971, The Bronx Museum of the Arts has exhibited a strong commitment to Latin American and Latin artists. That commitment has only strengthened in recent years, particularly after the 2006 appointment of Cuban art scholar Holly Block as executive director. BMA is always free, and in addition to permanent and temporary exhibits — including a collaboration with Cuba's Museum of Fine Arts that will culminate in January 2017 with the exhibit “Wild Noise,” a show that will feature more than 100 works sent from Cuba — visitors can see and participate in art shows, performances, film series, and cultural events that celebrate Latin heritage.
Cole Giordano

8. I Love Paraguay

Copy Link
43-16 Greenpoint Ave
Sunnyside, NY 11104
(718) 786-5534
Visit Website
Even the most devoted Latin Americanists have to admit that there's a limit to their knowledge. What do you know, for example, about Paraguayan food? To find out, head to Sunnyside, Queens, and visit the humble family-owned restaurant I Love Paraguay for a 101 course in Paraguayan cuisine. I Love Paraguay isn't the city’s only Paraguayan eatery, but it's probably the most popular one, serving traditional dishes like sopa paraguaya (which is not, despite its name, a soup) and vori-vori, which is a soup. Paraguayan expats congregate here to watch soccer matches, talk news, and keep up their language skills, but the restaurant is welcoming to non-Paraguayans, too.
Cole Giordano

9. Flushing Meadows-Corona Park

Copy Link
Great Lakes Ct
New York, NY 11368
(212) 639-9675
Visit Website
For New York-area Latinos, Flushing Meadows–Corona Park in Queens is a hub of expat life. Here, you can watch an ecuavoley match — it’s a variation on volleyball that's played in Ecuador and among Ecuadorean expats — on the weekends, participate in one of the annual fiestas celebrating national pride (Colombia holds its Independence Day Festival here each July), or indulge in the Latin American specialties served up by food trucks and vendors who participate in the Queens Night Market, which is held on Saturday nights from April to October.

10. Port Morris Distillery

Copy Link
780 E 133rd St
Bronx, NY 10454
(718) 585-3192
Visit Website
This Bronx distillery is the first (and so far, only) distillery in the US to make pitorro, a traditional Puerto Rican spirit that packs a powerful punch (its spirits range from 80 to 92 proof). You can take a distillery tour here and then belly up to the bar for a sample. Love the mouthfeel and flavor? Then stick around and order a cocktail at the bar. The joint is jumping on the weekends, as the distillery has a space for live music and a DJ.
Francisco Collazo
This advertising content was produced in collaboration between Vox Creative and our sponsor, without involvement from Vox Media editorial staff.

1. La Nacional

239 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011
Cole Giordano
Come World Cup time, this is the place to watch the beautiful game. Passionate fans, including old-time members of the Spanish Benevolent Society, which is housed upstairs (and has been there since the 1800s), come here to enjoy matches and linger over pans of expertly prepared paella and steaming bowls of caldo gallego, a stew of white beans, chorizo, and kale. You don't have to wait for the World Cup to stop by; the restaurant hosts tango and flamenco nights every week. The restaurant is undergoing a transition — it's scheduled to turn its kitchen over to a rotating cast of visiting chefs from Spain come November — so stay tuned for more upcoming attractions and mouthwatering events.
239 W 14th St
New York, NY 10011

2. Coppelia

207 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011
Cole Giordano
Chef Julian Medina is perhaps best known for his Mexican restaurants: Toloache, with three Manhattan locations, and Tacuba in Astoria and Manhattan. But don't forget about his 24-hour diner, named for the famed Havana ice cream emporium, in Chelsea. He bills Coppelia as a Cuban restaurant/diner, but the menu draws on plenty of Mexican dishes, too, such as huevos rancheros and flautas de pollo. I'll confess: I stop at Coppelia for an oxtail empanada and cortadito (and the excellent pan-Latin music playlist: think Marc Anthony and Gente de Zona) before I hit the gym. A DJ spins beats on Friday and Saturday from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m..
207 W 14th St
New York, NY 10011

3. Café Habana

17 Prince St, New York, NY 10012
Cole Giordano
If I'm honest, New York City does not do Cuban food so well. The exception — and the closest you'll get to Havana in New York — is Sean Meenan's Café Habana, a diner-style restaurant in Soho inspired by the Mexico City coffee shop where Fidel Castro and Che Guevara planned the Cuban revolution. This buzzy spot serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as weekend brunch; the menu channels Cuba and Mexico in dishes such as the Cuban sandwich and the sincronizada, a black-bean and lemon-cilantro flour tortilla with mozzarella cheese, avocado, crema, and salsa verde. There’s also a cocktail menu that draws from Cuba and Mexico (order a Mojito on the rocks or the Jarritos Cooler).
17 Prince St
New York, NY 10012

4. Despaña Soho

408 Broome St, New York, NY 10013
Cole Giordano
True, you can find almost any ingredient from any part of the world in New York City, but Despaña is the place to shop for all things Spanish and Catalan. Plus, the Soho shop also has a café where you can order a perfectly pulled espresso and munch on a bocadito while you check out the dry goods inventory — and the cheeses, and wines, and the chorizos. In summer months, you can feast on paella during Despaña's “Summer Paella Saturdays.” Two big paelleras (pans used specifically for cooking paella) are cooked up and served to guests on a first-come, first-serve basis. Since the type of paella changes each weekend (there are chicken, seafood, black, and mixed paellas) and it’s the most authentic paella you’ll find in New York City, many guests are repeat visitors. And any time of year, master jamón carver Jaime Guerra teaches classes on the fine art of slicing those gorgeous (and expensive) piernas de jamón.
408 Broome St
New York, NY 10013

5. Subrosa

63 Gansevoort St, New York, NY 10014
Cole Giordano
Live Latin music is the house specialty at this intimate Meatpacking District venue that opened in late 2014. There are no bad seats here, and the atmosphere is always warm and friendly. The in-house musicians, Cuban percussionist Pedrito Martinez and his band, perform several times a month; the events calendar is rounded out by artists from all over Latin America and Latino USA, including an all-woman New York mariachi band, Flor de Toloache. There's a limited but tasty menu of small bites, mostly inspired by Spain (a charcuterie and cheese plate and gambas al ajillo, a Catalan garlic shrimp dish, for example), as well as cocktail service that reflects the reach of Subrosa's Latinidad; drinks are named for Latin American and Spanish cities. Can’t get to Havana yourself yet? Order the “La Habana,” which blends rum and pineapple juice.
63 Gansevoort St
New York, NY 10014

6. Instituto Cervantes

211 E 49th St, New York, NY 10017
Cole Giordano
If you're familiar with the name “Instituto Cervantes,” it's probably because the international organization offers language classes from New York to New Delhi. But Instituto Cervantes isn't just for Spanish immersion (though, yes, it offers that, too). Its New York site, located in an elegant Midtown townhouse, has a small but peaceful garden, a library where you can read newspapers and magazines from Latin America, and a full calendar of events that may surprise New Yorkers who don't know about this cultural gem. Recent guests have included the Roca brothers, of El Celler de Can Roca (currently ranked No. 2 on the World's 50 Best Restaurants list), and Mexican journalist Lydia Cacho. The Instituto is currently hosting a gastronomic film series — coming up on October 19 is “Mugaritz BSO,” a documentary about the Michelin-starred restaurant in San Sebastián, Spain — and offers weekly and monthly wine tasting seminars for a reasonable fee.
211 E 49th St
New York, NY 10017

7. Bronx Museum of the Arts

1040 Grand Concourse, Bronx, NY 10456
Cole Giordano
Since its founding in 1971, The Bronx Museum of the Arts has exhibited a strong commitment to Latin American and Latin artists. That commitment has only strengthened in recent years, particularly after the 2006 appointment of Cuban art scholar Holly Block as executive director. BMA is always free, and in addition to permanent and temporary exhibits — including a collaboration with Cuba's Museum of Fine Arts that will culminate in January 2017 with the exhibit “Wild Noise,” a show that will feature more than 100 works sent from Cuba — visitors can see and participate in art shows, performances, film series, and cultural events that celebrate Latin heritage.
1040 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY 10456

8. I Love Paraguay

43-16 Greenpoint Ave, Sunnyside, NY 11104
Cole Giordano
Even the most devoted Latin Americanists have to admit that there's a limit to their knowledge. What do you know, for example, about Paraguayan food? To find out, head to Sunnyside, Queens, and visit the humble family-owned restaurant I Love Paraguay for a 101 course in Paraguayan cuisine. I Love Paraguay isn't the city’s only Paraguayan eatery, but it's probably the most popular one, serving traditional dishes like sopa paraguaya (which is not, despite its name, a soup) and vori-vori, which is a soup. Paraguayan expats congregate here to watch soccer matches, talk news, and keep up their language skills, but the restaurant is welcoming to non-Paraguayans, too.
43-16 Greenpoint Ave
Sunnyside, NY 11104

9. Flushing Meadows-Corona Park

Great Lakes Ct, New York, NY 11368
For New York-area Latinos, Flushing Meadows–Corona Park in Queens is a hub of expat life. Here, you can watch an ecuavoley match — it’s a variation on volleyball that's played in Ecuador and among Ecuadorean expats — on the weekends, participate in one of the annual fiestas celebrating national pride (Colombia holds its Independence Day Festival here each July), or indulge in the Latin American specialties served up by food trucks and vendors who participate in the Queens Night Market, which is held on Saturday nights from April to October.
Great Lakes Ct
New York, NY 11368

10. Port Morris Distillery

780 E 133rd St, Bronx, NY 10454
Francisco Collazo
This Bronx distillery is the first (and so far, only) distillery in the US to make pitorro, a traditional Puerto Rican spirit that packs a powerful punch (its spirits range from 80 to 92 proof). You can take a distillery tour here and then belly up to the bar for a sample. Love the mouthfeel and flavor? Then stick around and order a cocktail at the bar. The joint is jumping on the weekends, as the distillery has a space for live music and a DJ.
780 E 133rd St
Bronx, NY 10454

Related Maps