Celestine in DUMBO

mixing drinks at the celestine bar

I’ve always thought of DUMBO as home to the scrappier, Millennial set – after all, a lot of startups are based out of there, and it’s also where Dan Humphrey the “poor” kid on Gossip Girl lived. So it took me by surprise to see such a polished and grown-up restaurant like Celestine open up here. When you step into the beautiful space and marvel at the stunning waterfront views, you don’t feel like you’re in Brooklyn at all. Maybe a high-end Los Angeles or Chicago restaurant, because there’s just so much space and there’s sophisticated jazz playing in the background, which is not something you come across all that often in Brooklyn. Celestine was clearly designed with the intent of being an impressive destination restaurant, and it succeeds, drawing guests from beyond the local Brooklyn Millennials judging by the well-heeled couples and families taking their seats on a recent Sunday evening.Read More

Los Tacos No. 1 and Los Mariscos in Chelsea Market

los tacos no. 1
adobada (marinated pork) and carne asada (grilled steak) tacos

Everyone likes to bash Mexican food in NYC, but you can actually get very good tacos at the Los Tacos No. 1 stand in Chelsea Market. That, of course, involves having to be at Chelsea Market and shoving elbows with the tourists for space and seating. And speaking of which, there really are no seats at Los Tacos No. 1, so you have to make do with the standing booths that are scattered throughout the market. It’s not going to be a comfortable experience, but the spectacular adobada marinated pork tacos will make you feel better about dealing with the chaos. Everyone likes to pair their tacos with guac and chips, and while the guac at Los Tacos No. 1 is very good, the chips aren’t hot and fresh.Read More

Sola Pasta Bar in Soho

sola pasta bar in soho

Do you remember eating from the pasta bar in the dorm cafeteria during your college years? Remember how you’d scoop out either plain spaghetti or penne noodles and then choose between a tomato or an alfredo sauce? So that’s what the pasta dishes at Sola Pasta Bar in Soho remind me of, which is pretty disappointing considering that a former Michelin-star chef from Italy is behind the operations.Read More

RedFarm Upper West Side

The server at the UWS branch of RedFarm was pretty upfront with me in describing the food there as Americanized Chinese food, which I thought was super helpful in setting expectations. You shouldn’t come to RedFarm expecting cheap plates of tasty dumplings or noodles. This is Chinese food for rich white people, so prices will be at least double, and American tweaks will be made to some traditional recipes such as putting Katz’s pastrami meat into an egg roll or adding applewood smoked bacon to scallion pancakes. Some of the mashups are actually quite good, and others will leave you wondering where your money went.Read More

Fast Casual Pasta at The Sosta in Nolita

pasta with a side of millennial pink at the sosta

Are you a Millennial who’s into wellness brands and likes her pasta served in a shade of fluorescent pink? Then The Sosta, the new fast-casual pasta restaurant from the minds behind By Chloe, is the perfect place for you. On the corner of Mott and Kenmare St, the bright lights of the restaurant invite you in to consider their Italian offerings. The dishes have catchy names, mixing familiar faces like bolognese and vodka sauce with interesting pasta options like gemelli and zucca. And the pasta tastes healthier than what you would get at the nearby red sauce joints in Little Italy, and an added plus is that you can get the pasta gluten-free or even zucchini noodle-based.Read More