In this age of hyperseasonal cooking and daily changing menus, it's become tricky to track down what used to be the go-to order for restaurant insiders: off-menu dishes, those things that are available only to those who know to ask. That doesn't mean they're gone, just that it's harder than ever to find food that the general public doesn't get to know about. It's out there, though.
Grub Street scoured the city looking for awesome dishes and drinks that, for whatever reason, aren't printed on menus: old favorites that chefs have retired but will make upon request; large-format feasts that only regulars know to ask for; kitchen-staff favorites that they don't want to bother making for everyone who walks in the door; and killer food that just might not fit in with the restaurant's regular menu.
So, check out this guide to some of the city's best secret eats, then, as always, take to the comments and let everyone know what your go-to off-menu order is — as long as you don't mind spoiling the secret. And when you're doing all that, check out the off-menu selections in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philly, and San Francisco, too.