Over twenty years ago, close to five million viewers tuned in to watch “Sex and the City” on HBO. During its six-season run, audiences watched Carrie Bradshaw navigate life in Manhattan with her three best friends and a Cosmopolitan in hand, all while wearing sky-high Manolo Blahnik heels. The series so deeply rooted in American pop culture also produced two movies and recently came back in fashion with the new HBO series, “And Just Like That...”
NYC Restaurants From "Sex and the City"
Throughout the show’s run, the ‘fabulous’ gal pals Carrie, Miranda, Samantha and Charlotte dined in an array of restaurants in New York. True “Sex and the City” fans followed their fashion trends and quoted their most iconic lines while foodie fans watched closely as they munched and drank their way across Manhattan.
Perhaps the most famous of the “Sex and the City” food spots, Magnolia Bakery’s original location on Bleecker Street is where fans watched as Carrie shared with Miranda that she had a crush on her soon-to-be boyfriend, Aidan. The name Aidan appeared as the number one male baby name when Baby Center released its 2012 list of top baby names. According to Baby Name Wizard, the name inspiration came from the character of Aidan Shaw from the series. The shared moment between Carrie and Miranda took place on a bench outside of the bakery while they enjoyed vanilla cupcakes with pastel pink buttercream. “Carrie’s Cupcakes” soon found its way on Magnolia Bakery’s menu because of this iconic scene. Needless to say, this scene also catapulted the bakery to fame with a quick expansion to other locations around the city.
You might recognize The Modern as the spot where Carrie told her friends that she was getting married in the “Sex and the City” film (or you might just remember Charlotte screaming). The restaurant can be found inside the Museum of Modern Art, and the bright, airy space is perfect for a special occasion or a meal with friends. Diners can enjoy a la carte options in the Bar Room or splurge for the tasting menu that’s filled with modern classics (just like the art in the adjoining museum).
Aleksandr Petrovsky appeared on the last season of the show. The character, played by Russian ballet dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov, was one of Carrie Bradshaw’s boyfriends that was not well received by her followers. Baryshnikov was part owner of Russian Samovar when his character and Carrie had dinner in the restaurant. It was a romantic scene between the two characters where Aleksandr teaches Carrie about Russian cuisine. The restaurant is one of the few Russian restaurants in New York. The menu offers favorite Russian dishes like “Pelemeni Dumplings,” and smoked salmon and caviar are the restaurant’s staples.
Located inside The Carlyle, a Rosewood Hotel, Bemelman’s Bar is a prime spot for a sophisticated cocktail before a night on the town, and it’s featured in the “Sex and the City” movie in a scene with Sarah Jessica Parker and Jennifer Hudson. Here, you’ll find an extensive selection of craft and class cocktails, mocktails and wines by the glass or bottle. You can also find a wide range of spirits and shared bites to enjoy with your beverage selection like prime-aged beef sliders, charcuterie boards and “Homemade Pigs in a Blanket.” If you’re looking for something zero-proof, Bemelman’s Bar also has a selection of mocktails.
Cafeteria is located in the heart of Chelsea. It first opened in the same year that “Sex and the City” premiered. It provided the setting for some of the most beloved scenes where BFFs Carrie, Miranda, Samantha and Charlotte would often gather to chat about men, love, careers, sex and shoes. The scenes filmed from Cafeteria spawned some of the most iconic quotes from the series, like the one said by Samantha, “Maybe our girlfriends are our soulmates and guys are just people to have fun with.” The restaurant was the perfect setting for the numerous brunches filmed here for the series. The restaurant offers traditional, American comfort food perfect for get-togethers with friends. Here you can enjoy items such as macaroni and cheese, tomato basil soup and meatballs.
Featured in the final season of “Sex and the City,” Meatpacking District favorite, Pastis was an early adopter of the outdoor café scene. No matter the weather, the expansive covered outdoor space feels like a logical extension of the restaurant itself, a French sidewalk café adjacent to an uber-Parisian bistro. The menu is pure Paris – order the steak tartare and frites to start, perhaps add a platter of oysters, and then finish with boeuf Bourguignon and a glass or two of Burgundy. The pedestrian-only street adds a bit more France to the setting – it’s like having the wide Champs-Elysées right in the middle of New York City with a tremendous people-watching show by your table.
Eleven Madison Park
In the episode called “Ex and the City,” Big, Carrie’s on again off again love interest tells her he is engaged to someone else named Natasha. Big nervously raves about the Cobb salad before breaking the devastating news. They are seen dining at Eleven Madison Park, a fine dining restaurant that opened in the same year that the series premiered. The original menu consisted of eight to ten courses that featured meat and fish dishes. This year, the restaurant introduced a menu consisting entirely of plant-based dishes. Sadly, we did not see a Cobb salad on their menu. Eleven Madison Park is located inside the Metropolitan Life North Building at 11 Madison Avenue in the Flatiron District of Manhattan.
A highlight for fans of the series was when Big and Carrie decided to finally tie the knot in the first “Sex and the City” movie. While fans disliked Big for leaving poor Carrie at the altar, most hated one of Carrie’s BFFs, Miranda, for saying to Big, “You two are crazy to get married. Marriage ruins everything.” This ultimately led to Big getting cold feet right before the lavish ceremony was to take place. The dramatic scene took place at Buddakan, located in the Meatpacking District. It was the appropriate setting with the restaurant’s dramatic ambiance, a combination of Asian tranquility and the flamboyance of 16th-century Paris. The restaurant features modern Asian cuisine with the “Edamame Dumpling” as one of the standouts on the menu.