| 09 Jun 2015 | 12:31


THE PENROSE ►1590 Second Ave., between 82nd and 83rd Sts.,

Check website for opening hours; closes daily at 4 a.m., food served until 1 a.m.

(212) 203-2751

This trendy, slightly-below-the-radar Irish bar/restaurant is a fun place to eat, greet and drink, with great craft beers, solid whiskies and a friendly staff to boot. Named for a neighborhood in Ireland, the Penrose also serves a solid weekend brunch that includes fried chicken and waffles. They also do fried pickles, oyster sliders, burgers and, of course, mac and cheese. CHELSEA EATS

THE DINER W. 14th St. and Ninth Ave.

Opens 8 a.m. Monday thru Friday, 10 a.m. weekends.

Closes anywhere from 2 a.m. to 6 a.m., depending on the day

(212) 627-2230

Retro diners are everywhere, but one of our favorites is The Diner, in the Meatpacking District/Chelsea, near the Hudson River, the Highline and terrific stores. It's nostalgic without being hokey and can't be beat when you're in the mood for comfort food like burgers, mac and cheese, Southern fried chicken, milkshakes and desserts like apple pie, cheesecake and chocolate banana pudding. It's usually packed, so service can be slow, but it's worth the wait.


BROADWAY BITES ►Greeley Square at 33rd St. and Broadway

June 1- July 26

If you're tired of grabbing fast food or one of those cookie-cutter salads for lunch in Midtown, Broadway Bites is the place for you. A joint venture of UrbanSpace and the 34th St. Partnership, this culinary pop-market brings together popular chefs, small culinary businesses and foodies-on-the-run for a couple of months in the summer – and again in the fall. You can enjoy some rolls from the Red Hook Lobster Pound without going to Brooklyn, or the meats from Mayhem and Stout, Mexican food from La Sonrisa empanadas or desserts from People's Pops.


CALLE OCHO 45 W 81st St. in the Excelsior Hotel

Dinner every day at 6 p.m., 5 p.m. on weekends.

Brunch Sat and Sunday

Phone: (212) 873-5025

New York, New York 10024

If you're into Latin food – including Cuban, Peruvian, Dominican, Spanish, Venezuelan and Costa Rican - this is the place for you. Their renowned chefs are known for using bold flavors to spice up everything from ceviches, tapas and empanadas to steaks, duck breast and paella. Great cocktail list includes a variety of sangrias and a dessert list to die for. Enjoy complimentary sangria during your brunch meal. You'll also find a bustling atmosphere and some hilarious house rules.


FRESCO BY SCOTTOCheck website for menu

34 East 52nd St.

(212) 935-3434

This popular Tuscan restaurant, owned by the Scotto family, is a favorite lunch and dinner place for many power brokers and celebrities looking for great food and ambience. Their menu includes lasagna, beef meatballs alla Toscana, poached Branzino, Fresco grilled sausage and risotto fresco. You might even run into Rosanna Scotto, co-anchor of Good Day New York on Fox 5.



Open 7 days a week. Check website for hours

(212) 995-1960

In a town where a dozen cupcake shops claim to be the best, this little gem on Rivington St. strives for cupcake perfection. Among the delectable delights are the pistachio cupcake, the 'ooey, gooey,' the sassy red velvet and the sexy red velvet and the Sunshine, which is – well – yellow cake and vanilla butter. They also have a coffee and espresso bar and offer same -day delivery in Manhattan on weekdays.


THE TASTE OF SUMMER$400 a ticket

Bethesda Fountain, Central Park

June 12. 7 p.m. – 11 p.m.

The annual Taste of Summer event allows 900 guests to dine under the stars and help keep Central Park beautiful. Restaurants like '21' Club, Boqueria, Gallagher's Steakhouse, Murray's Cheese Bar, Tavern on the Green and Thalassa, offer tastings, a high-end silent auction and music by one of the city's hottest DJs. All proceeds go to the Central Park Conservancy's efforts to restore and maintain Central Park.


FINNEGAN'S WAKEBurgers start at $9

1361 First Ave., at 73rd St.

Check website for hours

Lots of places claim to have the best burger in New York, but one of our favorites is at this Upper East Side pub with great bartenders and waitresses and a nice homey feel. Their burgers are 8-ounce sirloin, served on a roll and guaranteed to fill you up. The menu also includes traditional Irish fare like Shepherds' Pie and Bangers and Mash.