Your New Year’s resolutions to cook more and dine out less can wait. You’ve got one day left to be your 2015 self, so treat yourself to a grade-A dinner before hitting up some wild New Year’s Eve parties to ring in 2016. Check our list of best 5 restaurants and bars serving the best New Year’s Eve dinner NYC has to offer.
The best restaurants in the world—their own worst critics—are forever reinventing themselves, upping the ante year after year. On the international battlefield of glorified gastronomic destinations, Eleven Madison Park has racked up enough glittery accolades—from Michelin, the James Beard Foundation and World’s 50 Best Restaurants—to rival a five-star general’s bedazzled chest. It was already at that fine-dining pinnacle in 2010, when it tossed the traditional à la carte menu in favor of an abstract grid of ingredients meant to provoke conversations between diners and servers. Then three months ago, it scrapped that tack, too.
It was during Alex Leonard’s hyperseasonal three-year tenure at Blanca that the Williamsburg restaurant received two Michelin stars, a market-driven motif the chef reiterates at this 70-seat collaboration with former Mas (farmhouse) partner Hugh Crickmore. Ingredients are pulled from local purveyors—produce from the Catskills’ organic Neversink Farm, bread from Roberta’s—and butter and cheese are crafted in house for Japanese-tinged New American dishes like borscht with raw cream and trout roe, fluke with coriander berries and smoked dashi, and a large-format robata-grilled Sasso chicken.
New Orleans is perhaps the most protean of American cities, attracting in near equal measure folks you’d kill to break bread with and folks you’d break a commandment to kill: For every Kermit Ruffins, there’s a hurricane-swilling, chest-baring trollop leaving evidence of her last po’ boy in a pile on Bourbon Street. And it’s a shame that so many of NYC’s NOLA-inspired haunts accommodate the latter sort, snubbing the romance found in the Crescent City’s historic bars.
With 30 years and 13 restaurants under his belt, Danny Meyer has built one of the most recognizable gastro empires in New York. The latest project to join his ranks, a partnership with Blue Smoke lieutenants Mark Maynard-Parisi and Jean-Paul Bourgeois, is a Southern-twanged cocktail lounge that puts the restaurateur onto the drinks scene for the first time in his decades-long career.
Santina, a glass-enclosed jewel box of a restaurant tucked neatly beneath the High Line. Though billed as “coastal Italian”—the place is named for Carbone’s Sicilian grandmother—the vibrant set-piece room reads more South Beach than southern Italy. Beneath candy-colored glass chandeliers, waiters bustle around the Renzo Piano–designed cube kitted in pastel polos and white Rod Laver kicks, weaving between potted palm trees to deliver painted ceramic plates of house-cured anchovies and porcelain pineapples brimming with tropical cocktails, as salsa horns blare overhead.
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