photo credit: Eric Medsker
El Quijote originally opened in 1930 in the bottom of Hotel Chelsea. Over the years, it functioned as a clubhouse where people like Bob Dylan, Patti Smith, and Andy Warhol drank sangria and talked sh*t. After reopening in 2022, the restaurant looks and feels pretty unchanged—complete with red leather booths, a portrait of Don Quijote etched in glass, and a bar where you might see see the ghost of a former resident (or just someone who lives in Chelsea seeking croquetas draped with jamon). More importantly, the Spanish food is all better than what’s typically found at NYC’s legendary landmarks. Make sure to order the plate of anchovies and boquerones, and eat them on top of the crunchy-sweet pan con tomate. And, if you’re going all out, try the paella with rabbit and seafood. It costs $72, but can easily work as an entree for three or four people.
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