2016 was a different year in restaurant openings in New York City. Fast-casual, build-your-own, Chipotle style spots overloaded the city and poké literally surfed around the every block. I discovered my favorite cookie, City Cakes, which isn’t new, but everyone should know about it. I revisited and checked up on some classic old school spots to make sure they were still groovin’ (Gramercy Tavern, Momofuku Ssam Bar, Babbo), and I even created my own signature dessert, Birthday Cake Batter Dip, on the menu still at Blank Slate Cafe. Bone broth trends grew, and ridiculous Instagram worthy restaurants opened all over the place like gimmicky, Black Tap Burger milkshakes. Their tall, cake-topped drinks exploded all over Instagram who they can truly thank for their business. I actually love their burgers, but for the best crazy ice cream concoction, you must go for Kith Treats cereal infused ice cream. Anyway, below is a list of my favorite new restaurants from this year, and the dish that won me over. Most of the large newspapers and magazines always choose the same restaurants for their favorite end of the year meals. I like to pick places that I truly crave day to day and dishes I can eat every single time.
- Lilia’s Black Bass Salsa Verde and Olive Oil Gelato
- Wildair Tuna Kewpie Toast, Beef Tartar, and Fried Squid
- Pasquale Jones Leeks and Clam Pizza
- Lucky Bee Massaman Curry with Lamb
- Union Fare Tuna Poké and Birthday Cake Croissant
- Los Tacos Mariscos No. 1 Campechano which includes shrimp, oysters, clams, scallops, and octopus
- Westlight at William Vail Hotel Ribs
- Rider Soft Egg and Tatsoi Salad
- Nix Cauliflower Tempura aka general tso’s chicken minus the chicken
- Covina Hungarian Potato Fry Bread with Smoked Salmon
***Wildcard goes to Dinner Table which actually opened and closed this year, but I’m telling you, those circular lasagna rolls were amazing as was the choco-taco ice cream sandy. However, they are doing a pasta omakase in the Lower East Side, so check that out.