A New York Public Library website

Help The New York Public Library improve a unique collection!

We’re transcribing our historical restaurant menus, dish by dish, so that they can be searched by what people were eating back in the day. It’s a big job so we need your help! Learn more.

Connect: menus@nypl.org | Twitter | Facebook

We need you!

It’s easy! No registration required!

So far: 1,334,936 dishes transcribed from 17,547 menus


Map our Menus!

Need a break from transcribing? Help us locate menus with our new Geotagger tool.

American Historical Association
2011 New Media Award

What’s on the Menu is a tremendous educational resource that breathes life into our city’s most beloved restaurants and dishes. It has been an indispensable and hugely inspirational tool in the ongoing development of my restaurant.”
—Rich Torrisi, Chef

“For anyone who studies the way people cook and eat, restaurant menus offer an extraordinary range of rich material that few other sources can match. But for obvious logistical reasons, it's never been possible to explore that huge trove of information in the depth it deserves. This project will open up the menus and all they can tell us about ingredients, dishes and meal structure, about the economics and sociology of eating out, about the very language of food.”
—Laura Shapiro, culinary historian and author of Perfection Salad