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When we’re not getting distracted by modern comforts like Uber, Hulu and the Whole Foods salad bar, we like to get in touch with the New York City of the past. And the best way to do that is by paying a visit to a spot that hasn’t changed since the Eisenhower administration. Here are five of our favorites.

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bemelmans bar NY
Bemelmans Bar/Facebook

Bemelmans Bar

Sure, $23 is pretty steep for a cocktail, but it’s worth every penny when you get to soak up the ritzy, old-world atmosphere (complete with Ludwig Bemelmans’s landmark mural) at this Upper East Side institution. 

35 E. 76th St.; 212-744-1600 or

bamontes NY


This century-old temple of red sauce somehow has managed to remain more or less unchanged even as Williamsburg has transformed around it. Let’s hope the mind-blowing lasagna sticks around for at least another 100 years.

32 Withers St., Brooklyn; 718-384-8831

eddies sweet shop NY

Eddie’s Sweet Shop

Sometimes we want a fancy lavender-honey-charcoal scoop on an artisanal pretzel cone. And sometimes we want a classic banana split covered in whipped cream and rainbow sprinkles. On those days, we head to this 100-year-old Forest Hills creamery. 

105-29 Metropolitan Ave., Queens; 718-520-8514

grand central oyster bar NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar

Grand Central Oyster Bar

Oysters, prosecco and a gorgeously restored 104-year-old dining room in the heart of Grand Central Station—what more could anyone want? 

89 E. 42nd St.; 212-490-6650 or

merchants house museum NY
Merchant’s House Museum

Merchant’s House Museum

We may live in an era of buzzers and AC units, but we still can’t help but feel a twinge of jealousy when stepping into this mid-19th century residence, with its gorgeous Greek revival interior and luxe furnishings. (They had to make do without Wi-Fi, though.) 

29 E. Fourth St.; 212-777-1089 or 

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