New York may be the city that never sleeps, but even go-all-night types need a little refreshment to put a spring in their step come morning. Whether you’re looking for a grab-and-go snack to fuel you for a day of urban exploration or a leisurely brunch complete with champagne accompaniment, there’s an option nearby for every palate (and budget). Each of the ten choices highlighted here is located in Midtown proper or just a short stroll away.
1. COFFEE AND A DOUGHNUT: Dough Doughnuts
700 8th Ave, New York, NY 10036
Warm yeasted donuts drizzled with seasonal glazes and paired with French press coffee: a classic morning kickoff that’s perfect for breakfast on the go. This Midtown outpost of a Brooklyn favorite boasts a regularly updated menu of flavors: Nutella and Mixed Berry are sweet crowd-pleasers, while smoky-sweet Chocolate Chipotle and coffee-licious Mocha-Almond Crunch appeal to more grown-up tastes.
2. ESPRESSO: Little Collins
667 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10022
This sleek, industrial space serves a rotating menu of coffees (including pour-over and Fetco drip). Perhaps unsurprisingly for an Australian-owned spot, they’re known for their perfect flat whites. If you’re craving more than a quick caffeine jolt, try the “brekkie” options including avocado-feta toast or toasted banana bread with ricotta and berries.
3. JUICE: Green Symphony
255 W 43rd St., New York, NY 10036
Prefer starting your day with a blast of healthy fruits and veggies? Vegan smoothies and “juice remedies” feature heavily on the menu at this plant-based restaurant. The Chaduranga (kale, mango, cinnamon, agave) and American Idiot (pineapple, watermelon, mango, B12) are flavor standouts, while the He-Man, Wonder Woman packs a dizzying variety of nutrients.
4. CLASSIC DINER: Murray Hill Diner
222 Lexington Ave., New York, NY 10016
Sometimes, all you want is a stack of pancakes, a couple strips of bacon, and plenty of good coffee. For a solid old-school start to your day, this corner coffee shop serves up a lengthy menu of classics like lox Benedict and challah French toast. Doors open at 6 a.m., so it’s perfect for an early pre-shopping or sightseeing fuel-up.
5. BAKERY: Masseria Caffé
235 W 48th St, New York, NY 10036
Greet your morning Italian-style with a pastry (lemon meringue tarts are a star offering) in this teeny corner cafe. Too early to indulge your sweet tooth? Choose a savory croissant instead. There are just three seats, so expect to stand while you enjoy your Lavazza coffee and treats.
6. BLOODY MARY BRUNCH: St. Regis New York
450 Park Ave South, New York, NY 10016
In 1934, barman Fernand Petiot introduced his recipe for a vodka/tomato cocktail at the St. Regis Hotel, and the Bloody Mary has been a staple of brunch menus ever since. Experience this classic (now known here as the “Red Snapper”) in its birthplace. The Astor Court Restaurant serves the potent potable alongside decadent entrées like smoked pork loin croque-madame and champagne risotto garnished with 24K gold leaf.
7. NOODLES: Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop
600 11th Ave., New York, NY 10036
This fast-casual spinoff of Lower East Side go-to Ivan Ramen offers steaming, savory bowls of slurpable comfort. Feeling a little peaked after an evening out? The chicken paitan ramen (minced sesame chicken, soft egg, scallions, and rye noodles in rich chicken broth) is sure to ward off any malaise.
8. MICHELIN-STARRED: NoMad
1170 Broadway, New York, NY 10001
Innovative New American flavors combine with quietly opulent surroundings for a flavorful and memorable meal. The chicken sandwich with truffles and foie gras is a brunch-ready rendition of NoMad’s famous roast chicken for two, while super-rich French toast is a decadent dish perfect for sharing.
9. VIEWS TO DIE FOR: Robert
2 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019
Feast your eyes on stunning views while enjoying a feast of lobster Thermidor omelette, ricotta pancakes with blueberry gelée, or other vibrant contemporary dishes. Located atop the Museum of Arts and Design, this breathtaking space features low-slung furnishings that keep sightlines open to the expansive spaces of Central Park and Columbus Circle below.
10. THE MORNING AFTER: Tulcingo del Valle
665 10th Ave., New York, NY 10036
No list of morning options would be complete without a nod to the healing power of brunch. To soothe delicate heads and bellies after a late night, robust Mexican soups are just the ticket. Pair the mole tulcingo (spicy beef broth with vegetables) with a plate of chilaquiles for the table to get yourself back on the road to wellness.