Serendipity 3


Neighborhoods: Upper East Side
Cuisine: Diner, Contemporary, Eclectic

Serendipity 3 is a Diner, Contemporary, and Eclectic restaurant where most Menuism users came for fun with friends, paid between $10 and $25, and tipped less than 15%.

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"Frozen hot chocolate was okay"
"Minimum per person charge of $8.50!"
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jenniferyellow photo


 San Diego, CA

i must speak up for serendipity!

i don’t deny the incredibly long waits. (i’d say expect to wait at least an hour… especially if you go in the evening, even on weeknights!) or the somewhat high individual minimum purchase.

but i just love coming to serendipity! everytime i’ve been there, we’ve all left feeling like the trip was worth the wait. the desserts are reeeeally delicious! i almost always order the frozen hot chocolate, but it’s large enough for two to share, so i usually get to split it and try half of something new too :)

also, for those who get chilly easily (it sounds silly, but it can really take away from an experience!) — don’t worry. the desserts here are served cold (many of them ice cream varieties), but the restaurant is warm and cozy.

i’ve come to expect the wait and see it as part of the experience almost! there’s a cute candy shop next door (dylan’s) as well as a well-stocked gift section inside serendipity 3 itself that makes for at least 30-45 minutes of good browsing while you wait :)

Frrrozen Hot Chocolate

i’ve never had anything like it anywhere else! after my first visit to serendipity, i noticed that cheesecake factory had a “frozen hot chocolate” on their menu, but don’t be deceived… it’s not the same! :) available in take-home blender mix too!

spam_i_am photo


 New York, NY

More zemblanity than serendipity

If serendipity is finding something pleasant that is not sought for or is unexpected, then a quick search reveals zemblanity is to make unhappy and unlucky discoveries occurring by design. A little extreme, but pretty much sums up my experiences with Serendipity 3.

I’ve been here more times than I wish to have gone; seems that every visitor I have wants to come here. Hell, it seems like all visitors to NYC want to come here. Yes those famous 60-90 minute waits are true, even on weeknights. If you do come and find yourself waiting, head down the block where there are some outdoor seating areas, and also Dylan’s Candy Shop to browse around.

Decor/Ambiance: Definitely different, with plenty of Tiffany-style lamps and some retro items on the wall. A small general store with kitschy-type stuff as you walk in. It’s icebox cold inside, maybe to keep all the desserts from melting?

Service: Definitely colder than the room or the desserts, from the host/hostess to the waitstaff. Most of the time they come up to you with Parkinsons-type facies, bring you some water, take your order, bring your order, take care of your check, and that’s that. One time my server did actually crack a smile. I was completely caught off-guard. Another time our server brought the wrong item, but told us it was our fault. That sums up the whole gamut of service to expect. Oh, and they are very quick with their math. After taking your order within seconds they’ll let you know if you’ve fulfilled that $8.50 minimum per person.

Overall, I think the amount of traffic and hype surrounding the place makes it less than it is perceived to be. The desserts aren’t worth the wait. The staff seems jaded due to the amount of customers (they’re New Yorkers already, and to become even more jaded than the norm? Fugghetaboutit). Of the visitors that have dragged me here, 12 out of 13 have walked away disappointed. You can come and see what why it’s so famous, but I think there are many better tasting dessert places with better service and less of a wait. If you must try it out, just keep your expectations really low (and then you might experience some serendipity)!

Humble Pie

Peanut butter with a graham cracker crust. At first I was hesitant to order it (can’t I make this at home?), but I had a real craving for some PB, and thought, well it’s a fancy dessert place it must be really well done. Quite the opposite. It’s tiny. Taste didn’t arrive with the plate. I should have just made some at home.

Mint Oreo Express

Basically a minty Oreo shake. Not bad.

Forbidden Broadway Sundae

Ok, if you must come here, this is the thing to get! Chocolate Blackout cake, fudge, ice cream, and whipped cream … oh so sinful. Super rich chocolate.

Chocolate Blackout Cake

Great chocolate flavor, perfect richness. If you have a big appetite (or want to share with several others), get this with the 3-scoop ice cream dish with fudge and you have a huge Forbidden Broadway Sundae.

Frrrozen Hot Chocolate

This is their most famous dessert. I honestly don’t know why. Maybe the funky name? Seriously, just make a Swiss Miss hot chocolate mix but throw some ice in there and make it cold … and there you have it. Or think of a watery chocolate shake. Otherwise, flavorwise it’s ok. If you go I’d split it with someone so you can try another dessert.

Big Apple Pie

Not that big on size, but big on taste. Apple pie done really well.

Karo Pecan Pie

Just ugh. Bland. Blah. Look elsewhere to fulfil your sweet tooth.

Bread Pudding

Came cold. Lacking in flavor.

mmm_good photo


 New York, NY

Waste of Time

I loathe this place. If I could give it zero stars I would!

To be the kindest, I would say this is a tourist trap galore!!! Prep yourself for the $8.50/person minimum (and yes, the waitstaff will draw your attention to the fact that you don’t meet this ordering prerequisite when you initially place your order). Good luck trying to get the attention of your waitstaff once your order arrives! “Oh, there’s been an error in your order???? You must’ve said something else b/c that’s not what I heard” says the waiter. So, if you get the wrong order, don’t hold your breath waiting for an apology on their end. I kid you not, the waitstaff could care less about your table. Each time I go back there, the service gets worse and worse (yes, unfortunately I have a lot of out of town guests who are intrigued with the idea of going to the restaurant for which the movie “Serendipity” was named). Enough is enough, I will never go back there again!

To conclude, their desserts are not so great that it dignifies the piss poor service they provide.


Yummy FROZEN HOT CHOCOLATE!!! The food is like a burger j...

Yummy FROZEN HOT CHOCOLATE!!! The food is like a burger joint but whatever!!! The reason to go here is for the Frozen hot chocolate!

AlphonseT photo


 New York, NY

so good. famed because of the movie 'serendipity', but th...

so good. famed because of the movie ‘serendipity’, but the desserts kept them going. pricey though…


frozen hot chocolate like you've never had before! went t...

frozen hot chocolate like you’ve never had before! went to new york just to check this place out…LOVE IT!

gd0t photo


 New York, NY

Oh this is indulgence at its worst! If you can...

Oh this is indulgence at its worst! If you can decide on just 1 dessert right away, then I applaud your decisiveness. I wanted everything—and I’ve gone back multiple times in order to have it too! I’ve made their Frrrozen Hot Chocolate at home on multiple occasions (both with and without peanut butter) and have found the mixes to be a nice substitute for the trek across town, followed by a wait in line.

They were closed down for a short time recently due to some health violations, but it matters to me not. If it was cockroach droppings which made their offerings so delectable, then I say bring it on!


I love this place! I think the food is decent, but I don...

I love this place! I think the food is decent, but I don’t go there for that. The Frrrozen hot chocolate is AMAZING! I think the worst is the wait, especially on the weekends (anywhere between 30-90 mins!). However, during that time, you can check out Dylan’s Candy Bar or go to Bloomingdales. I highly suggest that you go during the day during the weekdays to avoid the long wait.

GraceSong photo


 Long Island City, NY

The service isn't that great and there's always a wait. ...

The service isn’t that great and there’s always a wait. It’s a cute cafe type setting, but I’d rather go elsewhere and get better service.

There’s a minimum of $8 charge per person if I remember correctly. They’re known for their frozen hot chocolates and it is really good. But not worth the wait. It’s one of those places where you go once and you’ll feel as if you never have to go again. But maybe that’s just me.

jpb204 photo


 New York, NY


Came here on with my girlfriend for the infamous frrozen hot chocolate. It was huge; in a decorative cup and we barely finished it. But it was delicious. Just to try something else… we ordered the nachos. They were disgusting. They were just fake oily cheese and blue tortilla chips. Also it cost like 15 dollars for that. Our waiter was also stuck up and seemed to not like us because we weren’t paying for a full meal.

I would say if you really wanted to try the frrozen hot choloate — then make a reservation in advance (overrated) and go during like lunch time or an odd hour as to not have to wait for hours. Otherwise, it isn’t worth it in my opinion. Then again, I did not have any real food so you may want to look at other reviews regarding that.

Frrrozen Hot Chocolate

Must try


If you're looking for dessert, this has always been one o...

If you’re looking for dessert, this has always been one of my favorite places. Yeah, it’s touristy. Yeah, there’s always a 1-2 hour wait. But it is totally worth it for the frrrrrrrozen hot chocolate (share it, it’s HUGE) and the Forbidden Broadway Sundae (huge piece of fudgy chocolate cake, ice cream, and hot fudge- also big enough to share). The food is good too, but portions are big, so I’d say skip the meal and JUST HAVE DESSERT!


The best ice-cream sundaes! Absolutely love the interior!...

The best ice-cream sundaes! Absolutely love the interior! Long lines though..

GracePoon photo


 New York, NY

very cute restaurant.. frozen hot chocolate is a must hav...

very cute restaurant… frozen hot chocolate is a must have… but i didnt think the food was that great… it was quite ordinary. this place is good to come for dessert only… but its usually booked… might have to wait like half and hour to an hour for a table.


the famous frozen hot chocolate IS really good. but that'...

the famous frozen hot chocolate IS really good. but that’s about it. nothing else is amazing. o and they sell weird random stuff in their little store.


frozen hot chocolate!!! i want to try $1000 ice cream th...

frozen hot chocolate!!!
i want to try $1000 ice cream that comes with gold
edible leaf

Diner Contemporary Eclectic
Sun-Thu 11:00AM - 12:00AM
Fri 11:00AM - 01:00AM
Sat 11:00AM - 02:00AM
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Serendipity 3  Restaurant Reviews

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  • 03/21/2013 - A diner from Canton, OH tried it and liked it.
  • 08/01/2013 - A diner from Maplewood, NJ tried it, liked it, and rated it 4 stars. They liked the food, liked the service, and liked the ambiance.
  • 08/05/2013 - A diner from Frisco, TX tried it, liked it, and rated it 1 star. They liked the food, didn't like the service, and didn't like the ambiance.
    Pros: 'pie'
  • 10/03/2013 - A diner from Hermosa Beach, CA tried it and didn't like it. They didn't like the food, didn't like the service, and liked the ambiance.
    Pros: 'Frozen hot chocolate was okay'
    Cons: 'Minimum per person charge of $8.50!'
  • 04/28/2014 - A diner from Brooklyn, NY tried it.
  • 09/06/2014 - A diner tried it, liked it, and rated it 3 stars. They liked the food, liked the service, and liked the ambiance.
Serendipity 3 is located near the cities of Tribeca, Peck Slip, Canal Street, Trinity, and Financial District.
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