Tetsu in Tribeca

the open grill at tetsu

It’s crazy to think that a meal at Masa in NYC, which costs ~$595 a person pretax, is comparable to the cost of a round-trip ticket to Europe somewhere. I’m not quite convinced that one meal, no matter how good, would ever be equivalent to a transcontinental getaway. Those of us priced out of Masa will never find out if the food there is worth an arm and a leg, but what we can do is go to its more accessible sister restaurant Tetsu, a Japanese robata newly opened in Tribeca, where dishes are comfortably priced in the single or double digit range.Read More

Wildair Re-Review: Even Better

persimmon, stracciatella and butternut squash at wildair

Wildair is always a great place for natural wine discovery. The last time I was here I became absolutely obsessed with a mineraly rose called Christian Venier Gris Gourlaouen, and I would buy a bottle of it any chance I could get at Discovery Wines in the East Village. That was several years ago, and on a recent visit, I similarly went nuts for an amazing, jammy red Txaranga from a Spanish vineyard called Vinya Ferrer. Unfortunately this bottle is hard to find and only seems to be available at Dandelion Wine in Greenpoint.Read More

Brunch at Chez Ma Tante in Greenpoint, Brooklyn

chez ma tante

As we know, Brooklyn is all fancy now, and the whole concept of the humble and scrappy Brooklyn restaurant seems like a thing of the past. But Chez Ma Tante, a new restaurant in Greenpoint that bills itself as a British restaurant, opts for more of a neighborhoody vibe. There are no fancy blue banquettes or expensive looking wood paneled walls inside, just a modest bar and basic tables and chairs, clean and functional like they were the best pieces from Ikea.Read More

Reynard Re-Review: Brunch

curried kale and duck egg

If you’re looking for a scenic and civilized brunch in Williamsburg where seasonal, New American food is executed very well, then Reynard at the Wythe Hotel is a great spot. I’m normally not a fan of hotel restaurants, which tend to be bland since they need to have a middle-of-the-road approach to please their guests, but Reynard isn’t like that. On my last visit, I fell in love with their cast iron pancakes and was impressed by the originality of their baked eggs with crispy black rice. Sadly, these items weren’t on the menu when I returned in late January, but I did embrace the change, specifically in the form of the sourdough pancake and the frittata. I probably wouldn’t order the curried kale again, as it was a little too soupy for my liking, and the merguez sausage, while an interesting choice, was a very gamey and salty one. Overall, though, despite a few misses here and there, I was generally happy with the food and enjoyed taking in the views from the pretty, well-lit Victorian dining room filled with the attractive people of Brooklyn.    Read More

Ato in Soho

Ato is a restaurant that’s very easy to miss, even if you’re looking for it. It looks like an abandoned retail space from the outside with no obvious signage around. Once you do a double take and notice the menu taped out front, you might be inclined to enter, although you’ll still wonder if this place is fully open. Something about it feels like it hasn’t completely repurposed its original retail space as a restaurant, even though there is an omakase counter and proper tables set up in there. But sure enough, Ato is very much fully operating, despite looking like a work in progress.Read More