186 Mott St., Nolita
Uncle Boons has sadly closed, but the kitchen mavericks behind this beloved Nolita spot have opened up a stellar successor. Thai Diner is exactly as named: a casual restaurant serving sensational, accessible Thai food with a nod to American favorites. Standouts include the crab fried rice, fried chicken laab, and duck soup. The owners have gone above and beyond to pivot to a restaurant model that will survive the pandemic, trading the multiple-small-plates trend for generously portioned mains. Diners sit outside and order via QR codes on their phones, minimizing contact and speeding up the order and payment process—it works. Images courtesy of Alex Mucilli.
Rebecca Atwood (Closed)
175 A Mott St., Nolita
Rebecca Atwood is universally adored for her face-plant worthy textiles and somehow simultaniously elegant and playful patterns, which range from the prettiest pastel pinks to a rich spectrum of cobalt blues. An online operation for years, her new-ish Nolita store is the kind of place where time stops. As in, you walk in and get totally, blissfully lost in the beauty of the hand-dyed shibori bedding, the embroidered textiles, and the mountains of hand-sewn throwpillows—all handcrafted in family-owned factories in Portugal. It's impossible to leave empty handed, so don't say we didn't warn you.
259 Elizabeth St., Nolita
Friends and designers Megan Papay and Cristina Palomo-Nelson know a thing or two about the kind of shoes women want to wear everyday. Enter Freda Salvador, a designed in California, made in Spain label that relies on top-notch Italian and Spanish leathers for its slip-on loafers, oxfords, and stacked heel boots. They’re the kind of shoes that just get better, softer, and even more loved the more you wear them. (One of our editors basically lives in the Keen Mule.) So it was only a matter of time before the Sausalito, California-based brand made things permanent on the East Coast. On a walkable stretch of Nolita with Clare V as its neighbor, FREDA’s minimal vibe is apparent the moment you walk into the bright, smartly appointed space that was designed in conjunction with their friends at COMO ID. The modern shelving keeps the focus on the shoes, but there are vintage rugs, plus old cobbler’s tools and lasts, which add visual interest. They have two other storefronts in SF and Culver City, where they share a space with milliner Janesse Leoné.
29 Prince St., Nolita
Cuyana has long been our go-to for small leather goods (shout-out to one particularly great Marie Kondo jewelry box collaboration). For their East Coast flagship, cofounders Karla Gallardo and Shilpa Shah took everything they knew from years of hosting pop-ups and created a pale-pink minimalist space. Visitors have the option of using small blocks shaped like laptops, water bottles, and cell phones to get a sense of a bag’s weight and look when it’s full of their personal items. There is also an in-store monogramming station—which is great if you’re in need of a quick, functional gift—and a well-edited clothing selection: silk camisoles, classic V-necks, and long, loose cardigans, all arranged by color.
ModelFIT New York City
212 Bowery, 2nd Floor, Nolita
Up a nondescript flight of stairs on a well-trafficked stretch of the Bowery, the modelFIT Method relies on small movements using hand weights, a resistance band, gliders, and mini exercise balls to target small muscle grounds as opposed to more traditional jump squats, burpees, etc, in a bright light-filled space. Among the best offerings: modelFIT scuplt, which targets butt, thighs, and abs, and a dance cardio version featuring follow along-style dance moves. The classes generally fill up quickly, so best to get there a little early to get a good spot.
164 Mott St., Nolita
For classic Aussie-style avo toast, or an insanely decadent banana bread topped with honey and mascarpone, look no farther than this charming, low-key café with outposts both here and Tribeca. The menu focuses on simple, health-centric food–and the space is bright (read: white-washed brick and string lights overhead) and totally relaxed thanks to its Aussie roots.
151 Elizabeth St., Nolita
Owned by the adorable husband/wife team Sarah Schneider and Demetri Makoulis and chef Nick Korbee, Egg Shop was founded on a mutual love of the egg sandwich. That said, their menu has since expanded to include all kinds of egg specialties, from BLT benedicts, to spicy fried chicken with eggs, and smoked salmon scrambles. There's a delicious egg-centric dinner menu, too, and there are now locations in Nolita and Williamsburg.
Cha Cha Matcha
327 Lafayette St., Nolita
This is truly a place for the matcha-obsessed: In addition to standard fare like a coconut matcha latte (made, of course, with Japanese ceremonial matcha), you can order their ginger turmeric version (the combination of assertive ginger, earthy spice, and matcha works surprisingly well), plus matcha pastries, and matcha soft-serve. While this NOHO spot is their latest space, the OG Cha Cha Matcha is just around the corner on Broome Street.
L’Appartement New York
254 Elizabeth St., Nolita
For in-the-know New Yorkers, Sézane has been a kind of Parisian style Holy Grail. The laid-back French label pretty consistently check off all the sartorial boxes, best known for their thoughtful edit of lace blouses, stacked-heel boots, great jeans, and unfussy dresses. For their first US outpost, they've settled down in Nolita, where design inspiration comes straight from founder Morgane Sezalory's Paris flat complete with plush velvet seating, light wood floors, wraparound bookshelves, and lots of houseplants. (Bonus: there's a small café fueled by goop favorite Maman so you can sip your latte while you peruse the racks, or settle into the nook near the front with one of the many books on offer.)
19 Kenmare St., Nolita
You’ll hear a lot about how stylish Nolita's De Maria is (and Instagram-ready, too): The bright, sun-filled minimalist space enlists lots of soft earth tones and a beautiful bar to warm its sleek furniture and white-painted brick walls. From the pretty ceramic plates to the staff’s striped Everlane-designed uniforms, everything is as photogenic as the food itself—which is, of course, much more than just photogenic. Helmed by Camille Becerra (previously of Navy and Café Henrie), the menu is stacked with of-the-moment, elevated healthy favorites (think: chili-turmeric bone broth with milk-foam, herbs, and mustard seed oil; radish and jicama salad; sweet potato with beet borani, walnut, and mint). Their famed Fire Dragon Bowl—turmeric poached egg, heirloom beans, avocado, and tarragon tahini–is not to be missed. Photos: Nikki Brand