You know the situation - it's meal-planning time, and everyone's trying to come up with some creative new ideas. But time and time again, the same place gets suggested.
Welcome to "That Place Again?" in which we'll take the restaurants that make you say, "...That place again?" and help you out with some fresh options to try instead.
First up: ABC Kitchen, the once-great vegetable-friendly restaurant inside a carpet store that's popular for brunch, for fancy Friday afternoon power lunches, for birthdays, and also for dinner with vegetarians. Looking for a place that's aesthetically pleasing, serving "farm-to-table" type food that isn't terrible for you? Did you just find yourself saying, "You know, something like ABC Kitchen?"
Here are six options to consider instead:
Where to Eat Instead
Are you a vegetable person? Covina has two kinds of charred broccolini on its menu. And curry cauliflower. And something called "asparagus cacio e pepe." But also some very good pizza and pasta. There are even some floral decals spread throughout the restaurant. This new restaurant on Park in the 20s will serve you well for anything from a weekday lunch to an easy group dinner.
Are you a really serious vegetable person? Nix is a new Greenwich Village restaurant you'll want to add to the list. There are two menus here: one all vegetarian, and one all vegan. While no meat is involved, they do throw things in the deep fryer with some regularity, so you can expect tastiness. Aesthetically, it's a bit more toned down than the interior designer's fever dream that is ABC, but it's still a very attractive restaurant, if that's what you're after.
Pretty people, pretty space, pretty food: you'll find them all at Narcissa. The menu here is again vegetable heavy, though you can also have a ribeye or a braised lamb shoulder, should you so wish. Taking into account its top-notch outdoor garden, we're ready to classify Narcissa as one of the most underrated restaurants in the city.
Your parents are in town, and a Fancy Brunch is in order. Somewhere bright, with great food, probably owned by a famous chef. The move now is to go to Untitled, attached to The Whitney in Meatpacking. Consider this: after lunch, would you rather peruse pillows and $400 blankets, or famous modern art, followed a stroll down the Highline? The choice is yours.
What's that? Yes, we're including ABC Kitchen's connected sister restaurant on this list. The Mexican food at ABC Cocina hasn't quite achieved cult status, but we happen to think it's actually the more interesting, more consistent restaurant at this point.
If you're looking to take your seasonal small plates eating out of the island of Manhattan, the place you should be doing it right now is Freek's Mill. You're going to be excited when you smell the wood-burning oven, and even more excited when you eat the food coming out of it. Any friends you bring to this fantastic new restaurant in Gowanus are going to leave impressed. Trust us on this one.