Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

ISO restaurant stylish/hip AND has great food


LilianNY
 Share

Recommended Posts

Dining with another couple really into trying new, cool places. I care more about food. ie They were into Mainland, I was more into NY Noodle Town. They wanted Suba. I, Telepan or Gari. So now we are trying to find a place we can all be happy. Trying to keep it at around $70 before copious drinking. Also should be a place we can actually get a res without jumping thru hoops. Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dining with another couple really into trying new, cool places. I care more about food.  ie They were into Mainland,  I was more into NY Noodle Town. They wanted Suba. I, Telepan or Gari. So now we are trying to find a place we can all be happy. Trying to keep it at around $70 before copious drinking. Also should be a place we can actually get a res without jumping thru hoops.  Thanks!

Do you need to have a reservation as opposed to being able to wait at a no-reservations place? Because if not, I might recommend (and I know it's an ad nauseam issue):

Momofuku Ssam Bar, which is both hip and has delicious food.

Suba is a nice choice also, incidentally. Fine food and a nice vibe.

Mayur Subbarao, aka "Mayur"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

thanks. really tryng for a reservation because of babysitter issues.  i'm surprised that the food at suba is good. i had read so many negative reviews about that aspect of the restaurant.

Also, Seamus's other place, Boqueria, comes to mind, as does Merkat.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is Mercat actually good? Still haven't been... The only problem that I have with Boqueria is that it's a madhouse, but some people who are going for a hip vibe LIKE it crowded and noisy.

I actually quite like Suba, food-wise, but it is worth collecting a consensus on the issue.

Some other options: If you can figure out a 5th diner, Tia Pol (on 10th Avenue between 22nd and 23rd Streets) is what I might call "hip" and does reservations for parties of 5 or more. Alta (on 10th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue) is downtown-ish, if not "hip," and takes reservations for all party sizes. The food is (IMHO) excellent, as is the wine list (and, for some reason, they have an insanely well-stocked cocktail bar though not a super-trained staff).

I don't know what you might think about Kingswood (in the old Jefferson space, on West 10th between Greenwich Avenue & 6th Avenue. I've only had a drink and some snacks at the bar, but it certainly qualifies as hip, and the food is solidly executed based on what I had.

Mayur Subbarao, aka "Mayur"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mercat is quite good, and definitely has a good vibe. I've eaten at the bar a few times and liked it a lot, and it's not crazy expensive.

While I liked the food at Suba I found it less satisfying than Boqueria. It was good enough that I'd go there again. There was a lot going on on the plates at Suba, almost to distraction. Boqueria seems to be more simple and straightforward food-wise. No resys at Boqueria though, which can suck, but it doesn't seem as crowded lately as it used to be. I would go early or late, and you can always have a cocktail at Flatiron before or after.

Went to Tailor last weekend, which was fantastic, and would fit all of your requirements quite easily. Not new, but Prune or Peasant? Perilla? Degustation?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was thinking of Tailor, but isn't that actually pushing their price envelope, or is it only the degustation that achieves that level?

Peasant is actually spot-on; the food's great and the vibe is definitely hip. (Just request that you not be seated in the back; the heat from the oven can be intense!) Another option down that way is the Monday Room at Public, although the problem is that it can be difficult to put together a full meal there (they serve wine and light bites, emphasis on LIGHT). The latter is a beautiful setting, though, and service is professional, the wine list verging on spectacular, and the food inventive and delicious (if tiny).

Mayur Subbarao, aka "Mayur"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I also like Falai on Clinton Street, especially if you ask them specifically for the little table in the window (on a slight elevation, rather like a dais; it's neat!). Prune doesn't really fit the definition of "hip" for me these days insofar as crowd is concerned; neither, IMHO, does Degustation, although the room has a sexy vibe.

Mayur Subbarao, aka "Mayur"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm pretty sure that Tailor came to about $85/person including tax and tip and one cocktail each during dinner. (We had other cocktails at the bar that we paid for separately.) We each did 3 courses for what I think was $50 a person. So worth it. I think most of the dishes were $15-19 each if you went a la carte.

Peasant offers the added bonus of actually having availability without planning 4 weeks out. I have such a love/hate relationship with NYC dining.

Centro just got a not fantastic review in the NYT but I think it's definitely got a hip/trendy thing going on.

I wouldn't say Degustation and Prune attract the same kind of crowd as Boqueria or Mercat or Peasant or Tailor, they're also both TINY. But they both have quality atmospheres in their own right and I'd consider them good spots for a night out with friends.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"hip" is too variegated a term for me to comment on (arguably, if it's not in Brooklyn it can't be "hip")...as for "stylish", for great food, two places come immediately to mind:

Tailor and Perry Street. I'd surmise that Soto might hit the spot as well.

stylish with decent to good food: seconded Kingswood, Rayuela, Waverly Inn, Cafe Cluny.

I'd throw Babbo in as well.

all of these places easily fit your $70 pp before alcohol criteria.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for all the great suggestions... unfortunately all these places are BOOKED for Saturday! Unless we want to eat at 10pm which is not gonna happen. Unfortunately I got charged with finding a table just this week so I probably didn't stand a chance. If anyone can think of a place (pref not lower east side... just too far for the few hrs we have) where the food is good and the atmosphere decent (I am not even going to try for the trendy now) AND I can book a table for Sat pls let me know.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Peasant didn't work, hm?

(And I would avoid ANY non-reservations place of a Saturday.)

I would consider seeing about cancellations or other availability. Put in feelers to a couple of places, and I'm sure at least one will give you a window. In order of likelihood of cancellation, I'd go as follows:

-Peasant

-Alta

-Cafe Cluny

-Tailor (yeah, I know, it's a stretch, but the place had a few empty tables when I stopped by early a Saturday evening)

I can't remember if Perry Street serves food at the lounge-y area near the front of the place, but that might work for you as well.

Mayur Subbarao, aka "Mayur"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

"hip" is too variegated a term for me to comment on (arguably, if it's not in Brooklyn it can't be "hip")...as for "stylish", for great food, two places come immediately to mind:

Tailor and Perry Street.  I'd surmise that Soto might hit the spot as well.

stylish with decent to good food: seconded Kingswood, Rayuela, Waverly Inn, Cafe Cluny. 

I'd throw Babbo in as well.

all of these places easily fit your $70 pp before alcohol criteria.

All really good suggestions. If the prices of some are a little high, you might want to add in Lupa and Centro Vinoteca. Also, although it's pushing the price envelope, you might include P*ong on the list...it at least LOOKS hip.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Allen & Delancey (?) - and you can start your copius drinking elsewhere (after all, PDT opens @ 6, Pegu @ 5, D & C @ 7); however, it's on the Lower East Side as are many of these suggestions.

Probably near impossible to get into Lupa and/or CV - and if you want to have a conversation with your friends, CV is not going to work at all...Lupa has been redecorated and is much more amenable to conversation.

Is Chinatown Brasserie hip?

Where are you starting out from, LilianNY?

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

you have two choices at this late notice:

the lounge at Perry Street...

Bar Room at the Modern (which, even if it doesn't have reservations available, is quite accomodating for walk-ins)....

I second the bar room at the Modern. Seems to fit your criteria.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

SOMEHOW I got a table at a decent hr at Picholine. So good food for me and not trendy but sort of new (refurbished) for my friend. It will cost more than $70 pp pre liquor if we get the tasting menu, but the posts all seem to say it is worth it. There is also a 2-dish option that is less. Anything I MUST order here? TIA

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Picholine is a great restaurant, and the cheese cart will blow you away if you choose to partake. I'm not sure it's trendy or hip AT ALL--that my family felt out of place says a lot, and I can't imagine how I'd feel if I went alone/with my usual accomplice--but it's the company at your table that fundamentally sets the tone for the meal more than those at the neighboring tables. Just don't wear anything with even a hint of purple.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Probably near impossible to get into Lupa and/or CV - and if you want to have a conversation with your friends, CV is not going to work at all...Lupa has been redecorated and is much more amenable to conversation.

Is Chinatown Brasserie hip?

Isn't loads of noise part and parcel of being "hip"? :)

And, Chinatown Brasserie was at one point hip...may still be.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Isn't loads of noise part and parcel of being "hip"? :)

And, Chinatown Brasserie was at one point hip...may still be.

Yeah, LPShanet, unfortunately I think it is one of those rules of restaurant hipness...that and believing that indifferent hosts/hostesses and crappy service mean the food must be good.

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 months later...
Heading to NYC for a Saturday night with 5 friends in Mid-May and wanted to make a res at a hot/trendy restaurant around the union square/greenwich village/meatpacking area...

Top 3 picks anyone?

meatpacking is only trendy with tourists/B&T. although Merkato 55 is actually good (how long will that last?)

there's really nothing specific on union square but just north of it in Gramercy you could go to Casa Mono or Gramercy Tavern or up to Murray Hill for Bar Milano (which opens this week but will be guaranteed to be hot for a few months before people notice that it's in Murray Hill).

in the WV: Bar Blanc, Commerce, Waverly Inn or Smith's are plenty hot.

in the middle village: Elatteria might work.

in the EV: Ssam Bar (which doesn't take reservations) or Gemma.

Edited by Nathan (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Heading to NYC for a Saturday night with 5 friends in Mid-May and wanted to make a res at a hot/trendy restaurant around the union square/greenwich village/meatpacking area...

Top 3 picks anyone?

Well, it depends on whether you want to mostly drink or eat.

I'm going to differ with Nathan on Merkato 55; I think that place *already* went from all right to suck.

Ssam Bar for 5 on a Saturday night is just asking for trouble; there are really only two tables that accommodate that many, and it may not fit the definition of "hot/trendy" that the OP is using.

I think Bar Blanc and Casa Mono are the only decent places that meet the criteria. The Spotted Pig (and John Dory, if it's open by the time you get into NY), Bar Q, and the Rusty Knot might meet the criteria as well, if what you're looking for is crowds, drinks, and noise.

Mayur Subbarao, aka "Mayur"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...