The 6 Best Restaurants to Open in New York in March

To keep tabs on every New York restaurant and bar opening is folly. But to keep tabs on the most worthy? Yeoman’s work, and we’re proud to do it. Thus we present Table Stakes, a monthly rundown of the five (or so) must-know spots that have swung wide their doors in the past thirty (or so). Bon appétit.

mace (2 images)

Mace
East Village
You’re here because: While we’re typically three-ingredients-max cocktail drinkers, Mace has forever been our go-to for fanciful and creative libations, with things like Tumeric and Amberettes and Ghost Chilis featuring prominently throughout the menu. And it’s back in a big way — literally. The new space is much bigger and offers food for the first time ever.
You’re dining on: Chef Nick Sorrentino’s homage to his Italian roots is anchored in seasonal ingredients. Must-orders include A) the Pork, Veal and Ricotta meatballs; and B) the Roasted Baby Carrots and Crostini gorgeously dressed with stracciatella, pomegranate and mint.

505 East 12th Street (map)
Website

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Grimaldi’s Pizzeria
Dumbo, Brooklyn
You’re here because: The pizza institution is reopening its historic location tomorrow in a 150-year-old Brooklyn building just steps from Brooklyn Bridge Park.
You’re dining on: Pizza, obviously. But pizza with a 100-year-old dough recipe topped with Grimaldi’s famous secret sauce and hand-made mozzarella, all singed to crispy perfection in 1,200-degree coal-burning oven.

1 Front Street, Brooklyn (map)
Website

ardyn (2 images)

Ardyn
Greenwich Village
You’re here because: Anything from chefs Ryan Lory and Adam Bordonaro (formerly of the Charlie Palmer Group and Fig & Olive) is wine-and-dine gold. And Ardyn’s offering three different experiences: a bar-menu lounge, an a la carte dining room, and a tasting-menu chef’s counter.
You’re dining on: Elevated American bistro fare, from small plates like White Asparagus with Iberico Ham to more bountiful dishes like the Dry-Aged Wagyu Ribeye. Collectively, the eats are refreshing, delectable and not overdone.

33 West 8th Street (map)
Website

smor (2 images)

Smør
East Village
You’re here because: Smør means butter in Danish. And no one argues with butter.
You’re dining on: Comfort food, but not in the mac ‘n’ cheese or mashed potatoes type of way. Think light, clean and cozy with hits mirroring what you’d find in a Copenhagen cafe. The roster boasts plenty of smoked fish and salmon, lemon, dill and herring, all meticulously stacked between thin-sliced rye.

441 East 12th Street (map)
Website

leyla (2 images)

Leyla
Upper West Side
You’re here because: Not every special occasion has to be a steakhouse. This time we’re going Turkish chic. There’s also a private dining room for larger (yet still intimate) affairs.
You’re dining on: Shared plates packed with color, spice and flavor. As is common with Turkish fare, there’s eggplant prepared every which way, heaps of flatbreads and aromatic minced meats. Finish things up with the Phyllo with Sweet Milk Pudding and call it a day. A really good day.

108 West 74th Street (map)
Website

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Sushi Lab
Midtown
You’re here because: Just when you thought a table at Sushi by Bou was hard to nail down, they went and created an even more intimate experience in Sanctuary Hotel, with just eight seats total. Don’t even try to walk in — reservations are required.
You’re dining on: “Sushi with a twist” from Chef Frankie Chen. We didn’t know what that meant either … until we tried the Macaron with Uni. The damage wasn’t near what we had prepped for (shouldn’t have sold that kidney), with à la carte items going for $5 to $10 and a very satisfying and equally reasonable omakase for $50.

132 West 47th Street (map)
Website

Main image via Leyla