If you’re having a Mamoun’s falafel sandwich for lunch everyday, it’s about time you found a new place to stuff your face. We’ve compiled a list of the best mobile apps for navigating Manhattan’s diverse food offerings:
YELP (Android/iOS, Free): Yelp’s dedicated community of reviewers are full of opinions, often very helpful. But what sets Yelp apart from other “social yellow pages” is its “review highlights” section, an at-a-glance view of the popular terms in user reviews. So if you’re visiting Mamoun’s for the first time, you’ll know to get the shawarma with hot sauce. To make Yelp even more useful, refine your search to find cheaper eateries or the ones that are open at god-knows-what-time you’re looking for a sandwich.
MENUPAGES (Android/iOS, Free): Don’t bother visiting a restaurant’s website, because too often menus are only available in bulky PDFs. Any restaurant that cares about visibility has added their restaurant to MenuPages’s enormous database. Like Yelp, MenuPages offers user reviews and quick access to reservations. Full menus are available in mobile-formatted versions, making it easy to check out offerings before you realize how overpriced it is.
OPENTABLE (Android/iOS, Free): Speaking of reservations, grab the OpenTable app for stress-free reservations, weeks ahead or same-day. Instead of roaming the city in search of an empty table on a Saturday night, open this app and find a spot at one of OpenTable’s participating restaurants.
SEAMLESSWEB (Android/iOS, Free): Maybe you’d rather stay home, watch a movie in your PJs, and order Chinese food. Download this app and you can order from SeamlessWeb’s extensive list of restaurants. Enter your address and they’ll show you whose delivery zone you fall under, what places are still open, how they’re reviewed, and even which dishes are the most popular. Give them your credit card, choose a tip amount, and all you’ve gotta do is wait for the deliveryman to ring your phone.
HOW TO COOK EVERYTHING (iOS, $4.99/Free): If you want to stay home but know how to use your oven, this is an indispensable app. Mark Bittman’s bestselling cooking bible is now an iOS app, and boy is it awesome! How To Cook Everything‘s comprehensive list of recipes and cooking techniques make the enormous book easy to navigate and read. View user’s favorite recipes, sort by cooking time, learn kitchen basics, and automagically add ingredients to the app’s built-in shopping list to make that trip to Gristedes a little less hectic. This free version includes the essentials, but I’d highly recommend the upgrade.