Neighborhood

Lupulo

Gooseneck Barnacles, Lupulo

Of all the cuisines available in New York City, Portuguese was probably not something you realized you were missing. Yet like the Eventi hotel it occupies, Lupulo, a new restaurant by Portuguese chef George Mendes, has sprung up on the overlooked corner of 29th and Sixth Avenue where seemingly nothing was before. The open space, defined by an a huge marble horseshoe-shaped bar under a hatchwork of interlocking metal bars and lights suspended from the ceiling, has a very European feel, as if you had suddenly stumbled into Les Halles on the way to Penn Station. Kitchen staff shuck oysters plucked from large piles of ice, the place buzzes with conversation at the packed bar, and the smell of saffron is in the air. (more…)

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Chilo’s

Taco Food Truck, Chilo's

This sunny corner spot by the owners of Mayfield, also in Bed Stuy, opened just in time for outdoor dining season. The main attraction is the back patio, which in Hot Bird fashion holds several picnic tables and a food truck. It’s not quite as large a space, so you may find yourself jockeying for position during peak hours, but think of it as an excuse to make friends with your neighbors.  (more…)

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Ganso Yaki

Dried Skate, Baby Anchovy and Squid, Ganso Yaki Brooklyn

Located on a sunny corner right near Barclays Center in Brooklyn, this spin off of Ganso Ramen specializes in Japanese street food and grilled meats and vegetables – basically everything you need to go with beer or sake. There are big wooden booths and counter seating overlooking the grill. It’s a set up that works well with what socializing New York diners seem to be craving right now: drinks and shared food.  (more…)

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Hunt & Fish Club

Main Dining Room 2, Hunt & Fish Club

There’s a glitzy newcomer in town on 44th Street, a midtown stretch that desperately needs more dining options. Hunt & Fish Club falls squarely into the expense account steakhouse category, but here the fish is just as good as the meat. Go for the macho name or the promise of wild boar on the menu, but if you end up ordering something gathered instead of hunted, you will be equally happy.  (more…)

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Chefs Club by Food & Wine

Open Kitchen view 2, Chefs Club

There’s something to be said for good bones. Restaurant decor can go a long way in transforming an odd space into a good one – see Claudette, for example – but when you start with something as architecturally impressive as the interior of the Puck Building, you have more leeway in what you can hang on the walls – and put on the menu. It’s an unusual concept to open a restaurant that’s not the vision of any one particular chef or restauranteur but a magazine. Fortunately Chefs Club by Food & Wine Magazine gets a certain gravitas from the surroundings, whereas otherwise it might seem utterly newfangled. (more…)

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Cherche Midi

Bar, Cherche MidiIt was 25 minutes past our reservation time on a Tuesday night, and still our table at Cherche Midi hadn’t materialized. Aside from the wait, this can be a bad sign about a newish restaurant. Are the servers overwhelmed? Or the kitchen? Yet Shane McBride, the chef of Cherche Midi, who looks like someone you probably wouldn’t want to run into in a dark alley in Dublin, was leaning against the kitchen pass through, completely unperturbed.  (more…)

Posted in Cuisine, French, Lower East Side, Neighborhood, New York restaurants, Noho, NoLita, restaurants | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Claudette

Exterior, Claudette NYC

So a new French bistro opened in the neighborhood. This wouldn’t be so remarkable if it weren’t for the closing of so many bistros in Greenwich Village and the East Village over the last decade – often to become a TD Bank – but Claudette, started by the guys who brought you perennially popular Rosemary’s, was big news from the start. “It’s right around the corner from your apartment,” my mom said when we dined here on a random Monday night, months after it opened. “You should make it your neighborhood place.”

“We haven’t been able to get in until now!” This was sadly true. (more…)

Posted in African, Cuisine, food, French, Greenwich Village, Neighborhood, New York restaurants, restaurants | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Brooklyn Crab

Dozen Medium Crabs, Brooklyn Crab

In Maryland, you have not had a true taste of summer until you’ve eaten blue crabs coated in Old Bay and served with a pitcher of cold, cheap beer in a shack right on the water. You get to this place by boat (often the fastest way), and spend the better part of an afternoon picking chunks of crab meat out of cracked shells. And yes, it is worth the effort.

Could there be a place like this in New York? (more…)

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Red Gravy

Exterior, Red Gravy

Saul Bolton’s casual Italian restaurant sits on a stretch of Atlantic Avenue that used to feel desolate not so long ago, when the border between Cobble Hill, Brooklyn Heights and the wilds of Red Hook was home to only a few solitary bars and take-out joints. But now the long-shuttered Long Island Bar has reopened, Colonie set up shop across the street, and Bolton of the Michelin-starred Saul, now relocated to the Brooklyn Museum, opened Red Gravy. In the give-the-people-what-they-want school of thought, he has definitely succeeded, stepping into a vacuum and creating just the sort of approachable neighborhood place the neighborhood never knew it needed until now.  (more…)

Posted in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn Heights, Cuisine, Italian, Neighborhood, New York restaurants | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Elm

Interior, the Elm

There’s a certain sort of meal you expect to have in Paris – white tablecloths, foie gras, beautifully plated food and bespoke service – that unfortunately I rarely get to have. During fashion week I am too busy running around taking photos, and at the end of the day I often emerge rain soaked and generally unpresentable for fine dining.  (more…)

Posted in Cuisine, French, Neighborhood, New York restaurants, restaurants, Williamsburg | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Au Za’atar

Fig Crostini, Au Za'atar

Au Za’atar has already gotten a lot of press for a little restaurant in the East Village. This may be because a) it may be the only Arabian-French bistro in the city, and b) it is a new family-run restaurant on Avenue A, where just a block away a neighborhood pub was recently supplanted by the glowing specter of a 7 Eleven. (more…)

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Narcissa

Back Dining Room, Narcissa

Narcissa is the new restaurant in an odd, L-shaped space that they said couldn’t be saved. When Sam Sifton reviewed the old tenant Faustina here in 2010, he praised Scott Conant’s food but said “no matter the meal, you will eat it uncomfortably…in what is unmistakably an institutional setting.”  (more…)

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Charlie Bird

Olive Oli Cake, Charlie Bird NYC

Charlie Bird: the name is like a catchy tune that everyone is humming. You hear it on the streets, you see it in the papers, until you too are thinking Charlie Bird, Charlie Bird, I’ve got to get there. And once you’re inside the place, the song keeps going, this time as actual music, not Charlie “Bird” Parker’s bebop but hip hop with a beat. Even the Conde Nast editor sitting next to me was bobbing her head in time, as were the post-production guys at the next table. This is a place that brings together New Yorkers from all walks of life.  (more…)

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Le Philosophe

There aren’t many truly French restaurants in New York, but Le Philosophe is one of them. This isn’t the fussy cafe setting of Hemingway’s Paris, but a pared-down, black and white aesthetic that cross pollinated from one side of the Atlantic to the other and back again. The photographs on the walls may be of French philosophers, but the sleek open kitchen and industrial chic dining room is, as they say in Paris, très Brooklyn(more…)

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Atrium Dumbo

Of all the neighborhoods in Brooklyn, Dumbo is perhaps the most radically changed since the bad old days of early ’90s New York. Where there once were abandoned factories, artist squats and dark, deserted streets, there’s now a buzz of pedestrian activity, luxury condos and even a fancy florist taking up two storefronts. Atrium Dumbo is a sign of the times, bringing artisanal food and $13 cocktails to a once forlorn area right by the river.  (more…)

Posted in American, Cuisine, Dumbo, food, French, Neighborhood, New York restaurants, restaurants | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment