Best New Restaurants of 2016 and the Top Dishes of 2016

2016 was the year of Pasquale Jones. This restaurant makes delicious, accessible food at a reasonable price point (gratuity included!) in a great downtown location. I bring friends here repeatedly so that they can try the clam pie and the pork shank, which are two of Pasquale’s outstanding signature dishes, and no one has ever been let down. The same applies to myself. I’ve been back multiple times because the food is always good.

2016 was also a great year for poke bowls. There’s been an explosion of poke restaurants in the city, and my favorite one is Chikarashi in Chinatown. Indian food is also having a great year with the openings of places like Paowalla, Pondicheri and Indian Accent. So are sexy French restaurants, which are dishing up luscious meats and seafood in all sorts of creamy, buttery sauces in the prettiest of places. Brooklyn shows no signs of slowing down, New Nordic is still a thing, and you can never have too many new sushi restaurants. 2016 for me was also noteworthy for a lot of new overhyped restaurants I didn’t quite understand–Lilia, Llama Inn and Superiority Burger come to mind–but the ones that lived up to expectations really stuck. Here’s my list of the best new eateries that I think will have staying power.Read More

Dinner by Heston Blumenthal

dinner kitchen

British cuisine is about as exciting as a plate of meat and potatoes. That’s literally its traditional core–sausages or meat pie with a side of boiled veggies. This homely plate just doesn’t measure up against a sexy plate of Italian burrata or Japanese sushi. If there’s one man who’s up to the challenge of making an English roast something to talk about, it’s Heston Blumenthal, chef of famed restaurant The Fat Duck and now Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in London. The premise of Dinner by Heston Blumenthal is to pay homage to England’s gastronomic past, an ambitious undertaking given its centuries of existence. Blumenthal references everything from 14th century cookbooks used by the royal chefs of King Richard II to the whimsical pages of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. The royal court probably wouldn’t recognize Blumenthal’s take on their frumenty, a medieval dish of cracked wheat, that gets remade as a Mediterranean octopus dish, or sambocade, an ancient cream cheese tart, but they would all be in agreement that his interpretation was better than their own. They also wouldn’t recognize their surroundings, either. Gone is the cold castle and in its place is a beautiful dining room in a modern, grey and black color scheme with mostly wealthy Chinese tourists in the seats.Read More