by Patrick Heig - 324 Reviews - 95 List
Ask any dumpster-diving freegan, and they'll tell you how wasteful restaurants are with food, and that's on top of all the harsh cleaning chemicals, plastic takeout containers and other unfortunate by-products of the industry. But eco-conscious eaters have options in New York, from the expected hippie-dippie vegan restaurants to an organic burrito joint to a surprisingly green new Keith McNally hot spot on the Bowery.
Updated: April 21, 2010
James Beard award-winning chef Nate Appleman didn't just bring his Neapolitan pizza prowess from San Francisco; he also brought the ultra eco-ethos for which the city is famous. All waste at this Keith McNally hot spot is meticulously sorted, recycled or composted, although it's unlikely that anyone's leaving food on their plate.
Environmentalists can rest easy knowing that all of the utensils, cups, napkins and bags at this Union Square taqueria are biodegradable, and because the owners also hail from the Bay Area, they use mostly organic ingredients in the massive, San Francisco-style burritos.
A USDA certified organic restaurant--the only one in Manhattan--that uses 100 percent organic ingredients in its Argentine/Latin cuisine, this Union Square spot takes it several steps further, recycling and composting, using wind power only, solar lighting, and green cleaning products.
This fancy Upper East Side restaurant proves that vegan and upscale need not be mutually exclusive. The meatless menu focuses on sustainability, so local, organic foods are used to minimize the resto's food print, but the end product doesn't suffer--some call this the best vegetarian spot in the city.
Everything on the menu at this cute Chelsea restaurant--from the meat- and dairy- free ingredients to the wine and beer--is 100 percent organic. The menu is all over the place, with India, Mexico, Thailand and Italy all represented, but this is regarded as one of the best vegan spots in New York.