New York City Restaurant Trends: 2024 Industry Report

Cover of the 2024 New York City State of Restaurants Report.

  • The top New York City restaurant trends for 2024
  • Dozens of stats and industry insights
  • Stories from real restaurant owners in NYC
  • Benchmarks for city-to-city comparisons

Home to tens of thousands of restaurants, New York City is one of the world’s culinary capitals. But beyond the dining room, there’s a lot that goes into keeping the city’s restaurant industry going. And in the past year, business-as-usual became a lot harder for many of the city’s restaurateurs. From sky-high inflation to changing consumer preferences, restaurant operators in the Big Apple have faced a lot of different challenges and are now looking at how those issues will shape the 2024 New York City restaurant trends.

To uncover the latest data on New York City restaurants and scope out the top trends for 2024, we interviewed and surveyed full service restaurant owners, CEOs, general managers, and area managers from across the city. We then compared this data to last year’s New York City State of Restaurants Report to examine not only what has changed, but also what obstacles and opportunities lie ahead.

Our 2024 New York City State of Restaurants Report includes:

  • Dozens of stats on NYC’s restaurant industry
  • First-hand stories from real restaurant owners in NYC
  • Data-backed predictions for the top 2024 NYC restaurant trends

Below, you’ll find a snippet of the top New York City restaurant trends for 2024. To dive deeper into these trends download our free 2024 New York State of Restaurants Report.

New York City Restaurant Trends 2024

Though New York City enjoyed a year without any pandemic-related disruptions, other factors contributed to less-than-stellar profit margins. Soaring food costs, empty Manhattan office buildings, and unprecedented weather conditions all caused average New York City profit margins to fall to 9.2% – down from 10.1% the year prior and slightly lower than the national average profit margin of 9.3%. 

But true to form, New York City restaurateurs have shown great resilience in the face of stagnant profit margins and other challenges. Now, many operators have their eyes on the future and are looking for ways to adapt to the new industry landscape and bolster profits in the year ahead.

Here are three New York City restaurant trends to keep an eye on in 2024.

Catering’s Big Comeback

One of the current restaurant trends in NYC that is sure to persist throughout 2024 is a renewed focus on catering. Despite soaring food costs, our NYC restaurant report found that a whopping 60% of New York City restaurateurs plan to add catering services in the coming year, likely due to the return of so many in-person events. Furthermore, 47% say they plan to add a virtual brand (ghost kitchen), which makes sense given the high rates of food delivery in New York City.

Non-Alcoholic Drinks Go Mainstream

In light of high food costs, 62% of New York City restaurateurs reported raising menu prices in the past six months and, on average, they reported raising prices by 15% – higher than the national average of 13%. In response to these higher menu prices New York City operators note that consumers are ordering less alcohol than in the past – a menu item that traditionally produces high profits for restaurateurs. With this change in consumer behavior in mind, nearly a third (30%) of New York City restaurateurs say they plan to add more non-alcoholic drink options to their menus in the next six months.

A Turning Point for TikTok

As our NYC restaurant report reveals, New York City restaurateurs are incredibly social media savvy. A whopping 80% of the city’s operators report using Facebook to promote their restaurant and 80% also report using Instagram for the same purpose. And while TikTok lagged behind some of the older social media platforms in terms of its usage, it seems to be more popular in New York City than it is nationwide, with nearly a third (31%) of New York City restaurateurs using TikTok to promote their businesses. This current restaurant trend in NYC is one that appears only poised to keep growing in 2024, especially at restaurants that cater to a younger demographic. 

The above is just a brief peek at the dozens of insights found in our NYC restaurant report. To get even more NYC restaurant trends for 2024 download the full 2024 New York City State of Restaurants Report.

Wondering how full service restaurants in New York City compare to other U.S. restaurants? Download the complete 2024 State of Restaurants Report.

2024 State of Restaurant Report
2024 State of Restaurants Report

Get the top trends and insights with our 2024 restaurant industry report.

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This study was conducted by research firm Maru Matchbox on behalf of TouchBistro from June 15 to June 22, 2023. 

More than 600 full service restaurant owners, presidents, and area/general managers were surveyed across all 50 states, with an added focus on six key cities: New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Houston, and Miami. The statistically significant survey results are accurate 19 times out of 20. The detailed findings on this research by Maru Public Opinion are available at: Maru Public Opinion US.

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