Whether it’s glamorous fine dining, undiscovered international fare, or chefs exploring familiar ingredients in innovative ways, New York City’s newest hot spots are all offering something special when it comes to creativity. As this list of T&C's new favorites proves, dining out in the Big Apple has never been more thrilling.
From the team behind COTE Korean Steakhouse emerges a new spot dedicated to fried chicken and bubbles. Housed in what could be New York's sexiest new dining room, masterfully crafted by the Rockwell Group, COQODAQ reimagines the art of fried chicken by seamlessly blending Korean and American influences.
Much like COTE's renowned Butcher's Feast, COQODAQ's Bucket List includes fried chicken in two flavors, a soothing chicken consommé infused with Korean red ginseng, a selection of pickled seasonal vegetables, and scallion salad (ban-chan), refreshing cold perilla seed noodles, and delightful soft-serve frozen yogurt.
To complement this feast, a raw bar awaits, offering a variety of tartares, oysters, and caviar. Not to be missed are the decadent Golden Nuggets, chicken nuggets topped with ocean trout roe or luscious Golden Daurenki caviar, delivering the ultimate high-low bite.
At COQODAQ, champagne takes center stage as the perfect accompaniment to fried chicken. Boasting America's most extensive restaurant champagne list, featuring over 500 rare bottles, it's a haven for bubbly enthusiasts. Additionally, there's a thoughtfully curated selection of 100 sparkling wines priced under $100, ensuring delightful pairings accessible to all.
Four Twenty Five
Four Twenty Five, the latest venture from Jean-Georges Vongerichten, anchors 425 Park Avenue, a new tower designed by Lord Norman Foster.
Collaborating with culinary director Jonathan Benno, Vongerichten crafts a menu that showcases a deep appreciation of French, American, Italian, and Asian flavors. The à la carte menu features Nantucket Bay scallop tartare with tahini citrus dressing, chili oil, and shiso; sautéed langoustines in their shell with kombu-herb butter and lemon dressing; winter squash agnolotti with ricotta and Parmigiano Reggiano; seared Wagyu beef tenderloin with aromatic beef jus, and much more.
A selection of cocktails and wines from Italy, France, Oregon, and California complement the meal. Standout drinks include the olive-oil-washed martini, bergamot margarita, and rye-spiced sidecar. For those wanting a more casual bite, the bar and lounge on the first floor, featuring a 24-foot painting by Larry Poons, offers snacks such as uni crostini, shrimp satay, cheeseburger sliders, and chicken samosas.
The subway station at West 32nd Street and Broadway has long served as a gateway to New York City's Koreatown, a hub of culinary delights. However, it now also offers a passage to the world of Korean fine dining, courtesy of Nōksu.
Here, 29 years old wunderkind chef Dae Kim orchestrates an exquisite 12-course tasting menu, elegantly presented in a chic subterranean dining space designed by Claire Soojin Kim.
Among the menu's highlights, which seamlessly blend Kim's fine dining expertise (picked up during a stint at Per Se) with his Korean heritage, are the barbecue squab with a truffle bao bun filled with squab liver; two-day vinegar-aged mackerel with celtuce, lime, carrot, and brown butter; and a delightful take on gyeran-jjim, the Korean steamed egg dish, featuring caviar and stewed surf clams in scallion sauce.
For those seeking the perfect wine pairing, Juliette Dottle, Nōksu’s sommelier, has curated a flight featuring German, Austrian, and California varietals. Also worth noting is the excellent playlist curated by owner Bobby Kwak. Featuring hits from the 1980s, '90s, and 2000s, the soundtrack (available on Spotify) is an integral part of a fun and delicious evening at Nōksu.
Point Seven, the latest venture from Chef Franklin Becker and Loffredo's Hospitality Department located in the iconic Met Life Building, finds its inspiration in coastal cuisines from around the world and the bounty of the ocean.
Becker's menu is a celebration of diverse techniques and flavors, and commences with a selection of small bites such as live scallop ceviche with lemon and truffle and smoked sturgeon and caviar with chive cream cheese on a pumpernickel bagel. The raw bar proudly presents lobster, king crab, oysters, and exquisite seafood towers—aptly named The MetLife and The Vanderbilt. Small plates include grilled octopus prepared "Veracruz" style with tomato sauce, peppers, onions, chiles, and olives, while steamed Bangs Island mussels delight in Thai curry and fresh herbs. Caribbean fish stew and handmade spaghetti alla chitarra with sea urchin and Calabrian chili bread crumbs are two of the notable main courses. Desserts by pastry chef Sam Mason include banana cream chai with hot honey granola and a rotation of soft serve "Sam style," with chocolate shells and cherry dips.
The beverage program, carefully crafted by Bar Director Max Green, features seasonal cocktails like the 4 Corners Martini (gin, Oka Kura, Timbal Dry, and Seville orange bitters) and Crow's Nest, an on-tap Japanese highball with Toki, apple brandy, corn tea, lemon cordial, and soda. Additionally, it offers a well-rounded wine list with biodynamic and organic selections, complementing Becker's seafood-inspired menu.
Demo, on Carmine Street in the West Village, brings the creative vision of three Wildair alums to life. Owners Jacob Nass and Ian Henderson-Charnow, in collaboration with Chef Quang “Q” Nguyen, craft an inventive menu featuring dishes like lengua tonnata, lobster au poivre, and baked oysters with Café de Paris butter. Although chef Q and sous chef Dina Fan, who has experience in Japanese cuisine, have Asian roots, the menu is a harmonious fusion of local and global flavors. Notable dishes include the golden brown griddled arroz a la plancha enriched with mushrooms, taleggio, and fontal cheeses, and a dessert of brown butter caramelized banana pudding adorned with coconut, toasted almonds, and a dusting of coffee powder.
Jacob Nass has curated an eclectic wine list, showcasing a selection of old world and French bottles, as well as offerings from smaller producers dedicated to natural farming and vinification practices. The restaurant's name, Demo, serves as a tribute to nearby Father Demo Square and the neighborhood's esteemed civic activist after whom the square was named.
In the heart of NoMad's bustling dining scene lies Lupetto. Translating to "little wolf" in Italian, this chic wood-fired eatery from restaurateur Mark Barak has made its lair in a landmarked space offering panoramic views of Madison Square Park.
Crafted by the team at Parts and Labor Design, Lupetto exudes an ambiance of refined elegance, complemented by a menu that celebrates the artistry of wood-fired Italian cooking. From succulent meats to artisanal pizzas and vibrant vegetables, each dish embodies the smoky essence of the open flame. Notable menu offerings include veal Milanese adorned with gem lettuce, artichokes, radish, and saffron aioli; potato pizza featuring leeks, goat cheese, and pine nuts; and spaghetti al limone boasting Meyer lemon and Bronte pistachio.
Lupetto's craft cocktail program harmonizes the allure of Italian aperitivo culture with classic New York libations, while the wine list showcases a diverse selection of old and new world wines from esteemed producers.
Cecily, one of Greenpoint's newest restaurants, is led by Kristin Ma and Tara Noble, both alumni of esteemed Michelin-starred establishments like Estela and LaLou. The menu by executive chef Zach Frieling (Jupiter, The Four Horsemen) showcases an array of seasonal, vegetable-centric snacks and larger plates catering to vegetarians and vegans, while also embracing meat and fish-forward options.
Highlights include porcini "chicharrones" with egg yolk, mackerel toast adorned with parsley, red onion, and garlic aioli, butter beans paired with braised collards, sweet onions, and sourdough bread, and a roasted half chicken complemented by Castelvetrano olives, wheat berries, and pomegranate.
The thoughtfully curated wine list showcases bottles from lesser-explored Spanish regions like Galicia, Basque Country, and Catalunya. This selection is complemented by bubbles and natural whites and reds from around the world. Cecily's beverage program also offers a variety of craft cocktails and zero-proof cocktail and wine options.
At Tsubame, chef-owner Jay Zheng has meticulously crafted an omakase experience that pays tribute to the rich traditions of kaiseki cuisine. The menu unfolds as a succession of vibrant compositions, artfully assembled from seasonal ingredients primarily sourced from Japan.
The restaurant's name, Tsubame, is inspired by the barn swallow that annually nested in Zheng's childhood village each spring. The dining space, a minimalist jewel box, is dedicated entirely to a 10-seat chef's counter. Drawing from the ambiance of traditional kappo spots in Japan, Tsubame places a strong emphasis on the cuisine and offers an interactive and less formal experience. Chef Zheng actively participates in much of the preparation and service, creating a more engaging and intimate dining atmosphere.
In addition to the exquisite nigiri, Tsubame's standout dishes include the Osetra caviar shiso potato pave, featuring a harmonious blend of sea and land; the Dungeness crab and nagaimo (mountain yam) egg custard, elevated with the luxurious addition of shaved black truffles; and the slow-braised Hokkaido octopus, a succulent and flavorful delight that showcases Zheng's deft hand.
Naks, a newcomer from the team behind Indian hits Adda, Semma, and Dhamaka, embarks on a culinary journey to the Philippines. Under the leadership of Chef Eric Valdez, a native of the Philippines, Naks celebrates the flavors of his heritage. The restaurant's name, a colloquial Pinoy expression signifying surprise and admiration, encapsulates its essence.
Valdez’s menu is a homage to his upbringing and adventures across the Philippines, blending family recipes with his formal culinary training. The dining experience at Naks offers two distinct options: a 14-seat front room with an à la carte menu and a communal "kamayan" experience for 20 guests, immersing diners in the art of eating with their hands. Banana leaves serve as individual plates, with convenient hand washing stations enhancing the experience.
Naks' à la carte menu delves into regional Filipino cuisine, boasting robust flavors and unique ingredients such as coconut vinegar, banana ketchup, and bitter gourd. Standout dishes like Kanto fried chicken, BBQ pork jowl, eel with ginger and lemon soda, and Imbaliktad (bison ribeye) provide a rare taste of Filipino street food seldom found in New York City.
Maison Sun, a modern French fine dining destination in Downtown Brooklyn, welcomes diners to an intimate culinary experience limited to 12 guests each evening. Executive Chef Aaron Whittle, who boasts experience from Eleven Madison Park and Le Coucou, offers a 10-course menu that marries innovation and French culinary techniques. Dishes like coconut brioche adorned with abalone XO saffron butter, sea urchin paired with brûléed plantain and Royal Ossetra caviar, and venison served alongside pommes Robuchon showcase Whittle's commitment to culinary creativity.
The wine program specializes in regions like Champagne, Burgundy, Bordeaux, and Tokaj, offering pairings ranging from $175 to $2,000. The restaurant's decor, featuring an open kitchen and a theater-like counter setting, reflects a curated culinary experience with meticulously chosen elements like a vintage Molteni stove, Mauvier cookware, Laguiole cutlery, and collections of gold and sterling Christofle silverware.
Soledad, chef Julian Medina's latest culinary venture on the Upper East Side, is a heartfelt tribute to his grandmother, Soledad Diaz, an indispensable figure in his family and a culinary icon in her own right. Raised in Michoacan, Mexico, Soledad's culinary legacy enriched the lives of her seven children, including Medina's mother, Bertha.
The restaurant's inspiration springs from Soledad's handwritten recipe book, an heirloom originating in the 1950s. Many dishes draw from Medina's own childhood memories in Mexico City, where nightly family gatherings featured Soledad's culinary masterpieces.
The culinary journey at Soledad begins with starters like albondigas (Iberico pork meatballs) with spicy tomato-almond salsa and crispy potatoes; corunda (Michoacan corn tamal) filled with mushrooms, black bean puree, habanero tomato salsa, and bacon; and taquitos de kipe. Entrees include enchiladas Soledad with chicken, Medina's mother's signature salsa verde, crema, and queso fresco; and duck carnitas with sweet plantains, Mexican rice, Soledad's mole, and a sunny-side-up duck egg. The dessert section boasts sweet treats such as pineapple upside-down cake, honey crisp apple strudel, and carrot cake with parsnip icing.
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