I’ve been to a lot of fabulous restaurants in New York in the past few months. Here is my short list of the best-of-the-best.
Beauty and Essex – I’m not usually into places with this much hype, but it’s well deserved. B&E has a great bar scene and awesome food. Don’t leave without trying the box of donuts or venturing to the women’s room for a free glass of champagne!
Bell, Book and Candle – can it get any better? Farm-to-table is just this simple: grow it on the roof, serve it downstairs. That’s the claim-to-fame at Bell, Book and Candle. 80% of the veggies and herbs are grown upstairs on the roof, proving that great food really can be local, fresh and fabulous.
Locanda Verde – Worth the wait! Everything on the menu is decadent. Chef Carmellini is a downright fabulous. If you can’t get a reservation, show up early and wait at the bar.
The Smith – I think I’m the last of my friends to finally visit The Smith. Apparently if you’re a New Yorker, this is the place to eat right now. The food is fabulous, reasonably priced, and the atmosphere is awesome. What more can you ask for? Oh, a great Side Car, right!
M. Wells – this new Queens diner is anything but your traditional diner. In fact, I’d call the food downright outrageous with a menu including brains and pickled pork tongue. Definitely a must-visit for anyone with an adventurous palette.
Ma Peche – I actually went here for the first time last summer, but it’s still on my short-list. David Chang really knows how to serve an amazing meal. My favorite dish is the fluke photographed above, but I really don’t think you can go wrong. Everything is packed full of flavor. Skip the dessert at Milk Bar on the way out – undeserved hype. The “crack pie” is just so-so.