A Seat at Our Table

A Seat at Our Table: Where to Eat in NYC This April

Our secret food expert points us to her April faves, from cocktails honoring a famed futurist to a new spot inspired by 20th-century explorers.

Photo courtesy of Banzarbar

From a meal cooked by a teenage prodigy to a new West Village noodle hot spot, our Secret Culinary Insider shares what and where to eat and drink in NYC this April.

1. Not Your Average Teen 

Teen culinary prodigy Flynn McGarry—you know, the one who made the cover of The New York Times Magazine when he was just 15—has finally landed his own restaurant. Gem‘s Lower East Side space is divided into two: The Living Room is an all-day café featuring coffee and pastries until early evening, when the Dining Room takes over. With just two seatings for 16 patrons, at 6 and 9 p.m., guests pay $155 for a 12- to 15-course tasting that echos the dinners McGarry used to throw in his parents’ house, now bringing together the young chef’s experiences at top restaurants like Eleven Madison Park and Maaemo in Oslo. Plates range from one-bite masterpieces to shareable pasta to a “lamb feast.” The restaurant officially opened on February 27; book now while you can! Good for: The adventurous, dates, celebratory meals. 116 Forsyth Street (between Broome and Delancey Streets), Lower East Side

Where To Eat in NYC
Potatoes cooked in yogurt. / Photo courtesy of Gem

2. Cheers to “the Man Who Invented the 20th Century”

The folks at the NoMad Bar should be very afraid: The just-opened watering hole Patent Pending is even sexier than NoMad’s library. It’s installed in the basement of the building where Nikola Tesla did his experiments on radio waves, and the owners have taken their homage to the great inventor very seriously. At this chic little bar, the cocktail menu includes drinks like AC/DC, Cosmic Rays, Currents & Coils, and Hit By a Taxi (Google it). Even if your date doesn’t know about the “Electric Messiah,” you’ll both feel the pull of this dimly lit, seductively designed space. Good for: Dates, science buffs, groups, cocktailians. 49 West 27th Street (between Sixth Avenue and Broadway), Midtown

Where To Eat in NYC
Photo courtesy of Patent Pending

3. A Noodle Spot in the Other Village 

The East Village seems to get all of the cool Asian noodle spots first. Now the West Village can lay claim to this stylish, casual Yunnan newcomer, which focuses on mixian rice noodles and small bites. South of the Clouds‘s signature Crossing the Bridge noodles come with a gorgeous array of trays filled with goodies for dipping into the broth, while the Little Pot rice noodles feature a restorative four-hour chicken broth. The desserts? Stunning—especially the translucent orb that is the Water Drop, a clear, jellylike cake with rose petals. Good for: Budget gourmets, the adventurous, dessert fiends. 16 West 8th Street (between MacDougal Street and Fifth Avenue), Greenwich Village

Where To Eat in NYC
Photo courtesy of South of the Clouds

4. New York’s First Farm Brewery 

Lovers of craft beer and cider, as well as locavores, will love this Greenpoint newcomer. Dubbed “New York’s first farm brewery,” Annicka—owned by Greenpoint Beer & Ale—is the first restaurant to open under Governor Cuomo’s farm brewery license. It also partners with North Brooklyn Farms to provide many of the ingredients on the menu, which range from vegan-friendly charred cauliflower with pickled beet pâté to house-made sausages with white kimchi, crème fraîche, and potato chips. The room feels a little new, so maybe skip it for dates unless said date is a serious beer connoisseur. Good for: Locavores, vegans, beer lovers, millennials. 544 Manhattan Avenue, Greenpoint

Where To Eat in NYC
Photo courtesy of Annicka

5. A Cozy, Nautical-Themed Cocktail Bar 

The design geniuses who brought us Freemans have created a jewel within a jewel with Banzarbar, a snug, 20-seat cocktail bar perched atop Freemans restaurant. Here, you can enjoy cocktails à la carte; try lighter small plates (the fried chickpeas peppered with sage deliver perfect pops of flavor); or reserve its tasting menu, which pairs exotic seafood dishes with lower-alcohol drinks (so you don’t fall off your stool). It’s truly an elevated cocktail experience! Good for: Dates, private parties, trend-and-design lovers. Upstairs at Freemans restaurant, Freeman Alley

Where To Eat in NYC
Photo courtesy of Banzarbar

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