If it’s not clear from its name, MoonShine Modern Supper Club is an amalgamation of concepts. This is also demonstrated in its dark walls and bright paintings of pink birds and horses, and its menu that takes comfort-food classics and adds a spin of sophistication. Appetizers of truffle gnocchi with meatballs bathe in sherry-cream sauce, and the duck egg and hash is served with duck confit, peppers, and onions. Cooks put a twist on classic ravioli, filling it with sheep-milk ricotta and piling on hazelnuts, brown butter, and a pear puree, and they dress roasted atlantic salmon in cilantro-basil pesto and chorizo. A restaurant called MoonShine wouldn’t be complete without its share of housemade beverages, and double-certified sommelier and mixologist Joe San Philip delivers. His take on the manhattan combines white whiskey with Carpano Antica sweet vermouth, cherry bitters, and a cherry garnish. The Winter Moonshine Punch takes cranberry-infused Midnight Moonshine and adds cinnamon-infused rye whiskey, amaretto, pomegranate juice, and walnut bitters.
At Bar Majestic, live music can often be heard bouncing off the backdrop of darkly lit wood, shimmery walls, and wine racks so well stocked the place resembles a chateau wine cellar in the heart of Spain's countryside. Small, sharable portions of fresh tapas dance across tables and decorate the menu. Nibble decadent meats and cheeses, or bite bruschette such as spinach pesto, prosciutto, or mushroom tapenade ($3 each, $7 for three, $12 for five). Piping hot paninis pummel stubborn stomachs with comestibles including turkey breast, brie, romaine, and aioli ($8) or eggplant, fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and balsamic ($9).
Spherical lights seem to drift in smooth bubbly spirals up toward the ceiling of Flûte Bar & Lounge’s Gramercy location. Conversation bursts effervescently off walls and artwork in a palette of rosé pinks and prosecco tans. Myriad champagnes and sparkling wines, including Perrier-Jouët gran brut and a range of cavas, form lacelike crowns of bubbles in an atmosphere that aims to blend the French art de vivre aesthetic with a dash of NYC nightclub. Patrons can select single flutes or bottles, or they can sample several flights that showcase different grapes, a single producer, or the patience of a waitress willing to help you pick out all the bubbles. Cocktails lean heavily on sparkling wines and include bellinis, a blend of prosecco and fruit puree, which pair nicely with small plates of cheese and fruit or foie gras terrine.
Flûte now operates locations in Midtown, Gramercy, and Paris. In Midtown, visitors descend a short flight of stairs before sinking into intimate booths or plush benches. The original Midtown location celebrates its speakeasy roots with fiery jazz nights every Saturday, complete with performers and guests alike dressed in period apparel.
Fromager Dimitri Saad counts himself among the American Cheese Society’s inaugural class of Certified Cheese Professionals, and it’s not hard to see why. To aid those who aren’t as cultured in culture, Saad’s menu of more than 40 cheeses is divided into five sections: fresh, bloomy, washed, pressed/cooked, and blue.
In a way, Kilo is much like kindergarten. It teaches one to share, and there are plenty of blocks to play with—they're just stuck in the walls and called bricks. With an ever-evolving seasonal menu, the tapas restaurant allows guests to dine socially on small, shareable plates of marinated mixed olives, goat-cheese crostini, and ceviche tacos. Whenever possible, Kilo sources its ingredients from local farms and artisans.
The space is small, but the ambiance is carefully cultivated to welcome an upscale crowd. The decor falls somewhere between minimalist and well appointed, with racks of wine hanging from one exposed brick wall and framed photos lining an adjacent painted one. A rustic yet finely sanded wood-grain bar looks up to a galaxy of wineglasses, and a modicum of natural sunlight crawls from the all-glass façade to the back of the space. The kitchen begins to serve small plates at 4:30 p.m., and reds and whites from the wine menu fill glasses until the restaurant closes at midnight.
Someone who comes to The Upholstery Store looking to have a couch reupholstered will be in for a shock, but not an unpleasant one. The slender space is not an upholstery store after all, but a showcase for chef Kurt Gutenbrunner’s menu of Austrian wines, cured meats, and artisanal cheeses.