The defining quality of New York City dining is its transience.
With so many restaurants here one day and gone the next, it’s hard to truly fall in love with a place. But if we had to place bets on longevity, you’d find them here, on our list of the 10 best restaurant and bar openings of 2018.
Unsurprisingly, steak reigns supreme, white tablecloths abound and a Michelin star is still something a fella can hang his hat on. But don’t worry, we’ve also got a few surprises.
Dine on and drink well, people.
Image from Brooklyn Chop House
Brooklyn Chop House
Don’t be fooled by the name, this choppery is smack-dab in Manhattan … though it does offer great views of its namesake. And while the steaks and chops — not to mention ambience — are perfectly executed, you can count on them shaking things up a bit. Pairings on offer include inventive dumplings, short rib in bao bus and Peking duck tacos. The crowd favorite is certainly the OG revival of the Three-Martini Lunch though, a three-course meal for $24.95 with the option of a $10 martini (or three) on the side.
Image from 10 Corso Como
10 Corso Como
Located on the ground floor of the eponymous and trés fashionable Milanese store, 10 Corso Como is proof that New Yorkers will forever gussy up for a night out. The dishes are as avant-garde as the atmosphere; we recommend going in on the Scaloppa di Foie Gras followed by an Aperol Spritz and the superior Tiramisu as a closer. Then tour the Italian design haven that surrounds you in all directions. Our favorite section is the dedicated — and very fancy — sneaker shop.
Image from Holy Ground
This is the kind of NYC restaurant tale that dreams are made of. Once a secret, smoky Brooklyn pop-up — the get-it-before-it’s-gone type — they’ve finally set up a permanent shop. It’s an old-school steakhouse with equally good taste on and off the plate; the menu features ribs torched tableside, large-format brisket and a $1,000 steak worth blowing your return on.
Image from Misi
Missy Robbins’s Lilia recently made our list of the best pastas this fair city has on offer. But her sweeter sister restaurant, Misi, delivers the same technical excellence and Italian brilliance with a largely meatless menu for your carnivore-opposed comrades. Expect housemade pastas, lively vegetables and smiles start to finish.
Main image from Evan Sung/Leonelli Taberna
Chef Jonathan Benno (previously of the prestigious Per Se) and his superior Roman trattoria are exactly what the new Evelyn Hotel needed. You simply can’t go wrong when you bet on quality ingredients, which this traditional Italian cuisine has made its focus. The gnocchi with braised oxtail vaccinara is a reason to visit on its own, as are the desserts, which are just as thoughtful as the mains for certain.
Image from Atomix
Tasting menus can be daunting. Tasting menus in a fastidious Korean setting, even more so. But then this place rolled into town. It’s museum-quality fine dining, but still manages to be playful. Around the marble chef’s table, you’re in for a 2-plus-hour affair that involves 10 decadent courses. Each dish (like the eggplant with eel four ways) is accompanied with a dutifully designed menu card some 240+ words long that describes in eloquent detail the fare sitting before you.
Image from Bistro Pierre Lapin
Bistro Pierre Lapin
How could one resist a cafe/bistro helmed by Chef Harold Moore, who boasts 20 years of French culinary training under maestros like Daniel Boulud and Jean-Georges Vongerichten? You can’t. The technique is wizardry, but the vibe is about as serious as a grown man sporting a beret. Anything and everything that will make you feel like you’re in carefree Paris, from tableside toasted brioche dressed with flambléed fricassée of mushrooms to the humble, whole-roasted “Chicken for Two” served on a bed of foie gras bread stuffing and pommes purée.
Image from Ichiran
Table for one is back! To boot, it doesn’t mean eating at the bar. Instead, you’ll be slurping top-notch ramen in a one-person private booth, which means you can really dive in without reservation. In that pool of steaming broth, you’ll find one of the best secret recipe tonkotsu ramen bowls the world has ever known, with a matcha beer on the side.
Image from Go B./Yelp
A reservation at Frenchette is like Hamilton tickets in the early days: it seems impossible, and yet everyone you know has been. Keep chasing that unicorn at this otherworldly mid-century gem: the sadistic wait will be well worth it when you’re blessed with the brouillade with escargot, a light yet sultry pile of scrambled eggs and buttery snails. The duck frites, tinged with anise, deliver twofold, with both elements tender and crispy, the way the good Lawd intended.
Image from Harry's
We missed you, buddy. Peter Poulakakos and hospitality force HPH (Dead Rabbit, Ester & Carol, Le District, L’Appart) have renovated Wall Street’s iconic 1972 institution. And yes, it’s “that place” from American Psycho. Outside of a street slice, nothing denotes the energy of NYC like this roster of ‘60s steakhouse classics, from Beef Wellington to Dover Sole Meunière accompanied by one helluva whiskey program.
Main image from Evan Sung/Leonelli Taberna