Hot Spots in MoHi: A Guide to Restaurants and Bars Around Campus

If you’re already tired of Hewitt and have enough energy left from the non-stop tilt-a-whirl that is NSOP, here are the go-to restaurants and bars* around Morningside Heights.

1020 has a place very near and dear to my heart. Featured in that Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell movie that no one saw, 1020 is your typical dive bar with darts, billiards, and cheap drinks. The bartenders are really chill, and if you get on their good side, they might slide you a free drink. Plus, it’s right next to Rotti Roll, which is perfect for the munchies. One last word of advice: Beware of the Long Islands. They are potent. WARNING: Cops have busted 1020 in the past for serving alcohol to minors, so tread cautiously if you don’t have a fake. Address: 1020 Amsterdam Avenue between 110th and 111th, New York, NY 10025

It’s like a Happy Meal for adults.

The Abbey is a bit of a walk, but it’s a nice place to go to if you just feel like chilling with friends. It’s a sit down bar and grill, which has its pros and cons. CON: On Thursday nights the wait can be a pain in the ass. PRO: You can order food WITHOUT LEAVING THE BAR. The Abbey is also by far your best bet if you’re a first-year and want to get your drank on. Address: 237 West 105th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam, New York, NY 10025

Amigos (or the old-Campo) gets a lot of crap because the food sucks, but the drinks are absolutely magical. Although they’re a bit pricey, each drink comes WITH A TOY. For example, Shark Attacks come with a shark squeaky toy and Blue Whales come with a whale squeaky toy. Last semester I collected my sharks and ended up with about twenty, if that tells you something about my life. Address: 2888 Broadway between 112th and 113th, New York, NY 10025

On Sundays, Deluxe has this incredible eight-dollar grilled cheese and soup deal. The first time I had a Deluxe grilled cheese was the best moment of my life. For carnivores, they also have a five-dollar burger deal on Mondays. Address: 2896 Broadway between 112th and 113th, New York, NY 10025

My passion for Dinosaur BBQ is up there with Scandal and Rihanna. It is by far the best BBQ you will find in MoHi, and they give you an exorbitant amount of food for not a lot of money. Their drinks are just as delicious as their food, but you probably won’t have any room after your meal. Be sure to make reservations well in advance or visit during odd hours, as the wait literally can be hours. Address: 700 West 125th Street between 12th Avenue and the Hudson River, New York, NY 10027 ‎

The Heights has great food and great drinks at reasonable prices, and they open up the roof for lunch and dinner when it’s warm enough. If you go to the Heights after eleven, the only thing everyone’s drinking is the Heights’ five-dollar ridiculously strong frozen margaritas. Address: 2867 Broadway between 111th and 112th, New York, NY 10025

The Lions Head is more of a grad school hang out, but it makes the list because of their dollar draft Wednesdays from 10pm-2am. Address: 995 Amsterdam Avenue between 108th and 109th, New York, NY 10025

Kitchenette has really great comfort food AND they’re on GrubHub, which is fabulous because I’m lazy. If you eat at Kitchenette, you must get the fried chicken and macaroni and cheese because it is the equivalent of reaching Nirvana. Address: 1272 Amsterdam Avenue between 122nd and 123rd, New York, NY 10027

Mr. Monkey is regretting his decision.

Back when I was a first-year, I respected myself and my body and did not go to Koronet’s. As you might have guessed, those days have long since passed. Koronet’s serves pizza slices basically the size of a traffic cone (SERIOUSLY) for a ridiculously low price. It’s also popular because it’s open until 4am pretty much everyday except Monday. It’s also right next to Mel’s, which is convenient. Address: 2848 Broadway between 110th and 111th, New York, NY 10025

Mel’s is a burger joint and bar. Although the food’s just okay and very overpriced, they have these delicious spiked milkshakes that are probably 380,000 calories. Mel’s is also quite the after-hours destination for Barnard and Columbia students. I personally am not a big fan of Mel’s just because it seems like every time I’m there someone’s dying on the floor, but I know a lot of people that will only go to Mel’s. Address: 2850 Broadway between 110th and 111th, New York, NY 10025

Miss Mamie’s is hands-down the best Southern food I’ve had in Manhattan. I literally dream about this place. Yes it takes a while for your food to come, but perfection takes time. Address: 366 West 110th Street between Columbus and Manhattan Avenues, New York, NY 10025
Ollie’s: Chinese food. Quick. Cheap. Delicious. What more can I say? Address: 2957 Broadway between 115th and 116th, New York, NY 10025

If you’re feeling really classy but don’t want to spend a lot of money, Pisticci is the place to go. Pisticci is a very nice hole-in-the-wall Italian restaurant, and it’s a nice change of pace from most of the haunts in MoHi. Address: 125 La Salle Street between Broadway and Claremont Avenue, New York, NY 10027

The Seinfeld Diner! Also Obama ate here a lot.

Tom’s Restaurant is famous, not for the food, which is typical diner fare, but because its facade was used as the front for the diner in Seinfeld. One thing they don’t tell you about attending Barnard is that you must consume an entire Broadway milkshake from Tom’s by yourself or they’ll kick you out. Really. Address: 2880 Broadway between 112th and 113th, New York, NY 10025

Vine is technically a Japanese restaurant, but their menu is more Pan-Asian including Pad Thai and Vietnamese iced tea. I like to get the huge bento boxes and pretend I’ll save half for later and then just eat the whole thing in one sitting. Address: 2955 Broadway between 115th and 116th, New York, NY 10027

The Cheese Section at Morton Williams. It’s a grocery store, but just trust me on this one. Address: 2941 Broadway between 115th and 116th, New York, NY 10027

Did I miss any of your favorite spots? Comment below!

*“But wait,” you may be asking yourself, “we’re first-years, we can’t get into bars!” Note that not all first-years are eighteen (wink wink).

Disclaimer: The views of this piece are solely those of the author and not representative of the views of The Nine Ways of Knowing.

Images courtesy of, Super Sized Meals, and The Traveling Penguin.


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