In order to identify the optimal imaging conditions for the highest spatial contrast in biological tissue, we explored the properties of a tissue-mimicking phantom as a function of the wavelengths in a broad range of near-infrared spectra (650 to 1600 nm). Our customized multispectral hardware, which featured a scanning transmission microscope and imaging spectrographs equipped with silicon and InGaAs charge-coupled diode array detectors, allowed for direct comparison of the Michelson contrast obtained from a phantom composed of a honeycomb grid, Intralipid, and India ink. The measured contrast depended on the size of the grid, luminance, and the wavelength of measurements. We demonstrated that at low thickness of the phantom, a reasonable contrast of the objects can be achieved at any wavelength between 700 and 1400 nm and between 1500 and 1600 nm. At larger thicknesses, such contrast can be achieved mostly between 1200 and 1350 nm. These results suggest that distinguishing biological features in deep tissue and developing contrast agents for in vivo may benefit from imaging in this spectral range.