I went on Yelp and listed the most reviewed restaurants on Manhattan. If they were 4 stars or above, I posted their location on my Google Map list of New York City.
Because there were so many restaurants I wanted to try, I would often eat at three different restaurants near each other. For example, near Times Square, we were able to eat a slice of pizza that had pretty much standing room only, some tacos (standing room as well), and finished off with a hamburger/lobster combo (which wasn't that good).
The density of the restaurants make this popular.
We were able to go to most of Manhattan because of all the different destinations we were going to. I was able to see which restaurants corresponded to the Subway lines we took.
We pretty much went to all the different types of cuisines that I can't get in Puerto Rico or Orlando. Our eating was very Asian intensive.
I will note some general observations
I really like Korean BBQ. Jongro BBQ was probably the best Korean BBQ I've had in my life. It came with the green onion, spicy mixed salad, and unlimited green lettuce to wrap all my meat in. We got their Rib-Eye combo meal. We ended up going to Baekjoeng NYC but found their service to be lacking and did not come with the unlimited green lettuce to wrap all the meat.
If I go to NYC again, no question, I would go to Jongro BBQ again.
My Colombian girlfriend agrees that Jongro was her favorite along with Thai. I'm low-carb, so the lettuce wrapped meat is my favorite.
In general, I would say the Koreans have the most variety and innovation in the foods. Obviously, I'm biased, but compared to all the other cuisines, I have not seen such creativity in their desserts, crispy chicken, etc than with any other nationality.
We went to both Love Mama and Thai Villa. Love Mama had too much sugar in their noodles for my enjoyment. Thai Villa had a more traditional flavor I'm accustomed to. Still, I'd say my best Pad Thai I've had were at Siam's in Seattle and Thai Tom's near University of Washington. I'm not sure if they still exist.
Their Eel Tacos were really good along with their Bread Pudding for dessert. The line can get pretty insane, but it's worth trying at least once if you can get in without more than a 30 minute wait. I did not like their seared Tuna and would've preferred sashimi. Their steak had a really good sauce with it. Their fried chicken popcorn seemed like something you could have just as good or better somewhere else. Their truffle Mac & Cheese is probably an acquired taste as it is quite potent.
BURGER & LOBSTER
The burger seemed to be very lean. I need my fat. This place was a disappointment.
PASTRAMI SANDWICH @ SARGE'S DELICATESSEN
It started snowing our last day, so for brunch we had a pastrami/corned beef sandwich on rye. It was really good. I would definitely get it again. It's great for delivery too.
This was gross. I prefer Tripletas in Puerto Rico
PEKING DUCK & DIM SUM
We went to the happy hour at Dim Sum Palace and I had Peking Duck for the first time. It was tasty for what it was, and the soup dumplings were very juicy. It's still nothing compared to Korean BBQ for my low-carb diet.
ORLANDO VS NEW YORK VS LOS ANGELES
Other than the Korean BBQ, I don't think my mind was really blown in terms of what New York has in comparison to Orlando. Compared to Los Angeles, I would say they are on par. But then again, I was only eating in Manhattan which is a much more concentrated area vs the entire Los Angeles/Orange County area.
In New York City, you can easily just grab pick-up from numerous restaurants or have it delivered fairly quickly. That's something you can't necessarily do in Los Angeles.
Also, in New York City, it was kind of annoying to ride the metro everywhere. I prefer just driving and parking like I could in Orlando, even if ultimately takes longer. It's less walking, and I don't have to interact with as many smelly people.
In other words, the food in New York City isn't so much more amazing than Orlando that I would go to New York City just for the food.