Little Town NYC unabashedly hearts New York. Of its three restaurants, two are located in iconic Manhattan spots: one in Union Square, the other on Theater District’s Restaurant Row. Little Town’s fancy for the Empire State shines through on the menu, too, with homestyle dishes such as the Adirondack chicken pesto and an Angus beef burger topped with crispy Berkshire bacon. The Suburb Backyard BBQ platter is piled high with enough buffalo wings, Nathan's hot dogs, and other locally inspired fare to feed a family of four.
Little Town NYC also takes great pride in its beer list, which features more than 100 local brews, including IPAs and amber ales that hail from breweries in Long Island, Ithaca, and Saratoga Springs. At the Restaurant Row location, you can enjoy a pilsner from Coney Island while sitting in a booth constructed from the beach’s old wooden boardwalk.
The menus at Rèst-âü-Ránt can satisfy any individual hunger, but if you go with a friend or enemy you can maintain an alliance or siege by passing or failing to pass tapas, appetizer plates, and platters. Pair a specialty beer such as Lindeman's Framboise Lambic ($8) with a sampler No-Commitment Plate (manchego, brie, prosciutto, and hot salami with country bread, olives, and a red pepper spread, $10–$17) for a crowd-pleasing starter. Keep the group talking and whittling wooden clogs late into the night with tapas of Spanish sausage (with shallots and garlic pepperoncini in red wine, $9) and Argentinean steak skewers with chimichurri sauce ($9). Or do your own mouth-thing with a specialty panini ($9) stuffed with flavor-nuclei such as gorgonzola, green apples, and figs. Take a look at Rèst-âü-Ránt's photo gallery to stimulate stomach-eyes.
The appropriately named Mosaic Cafe & Lounge assembles three concepts to stand out in Astoria’s bar scene. The first and most obvious of these is a setting inspired by the salons of Belle epoque Paris. The other two are part and parcel: an attentive staff and a menu of fine wines that they have selected themselves.
The proprietors of Astoria Tango Club don’t hold advanced degrees in quantum mechanics or thermodynamic string theory. That, however, doesn’t stop them from attempting time travel—with a classically decorated dance hall replete with a bandstand, they transport guests to the 1950s. Guests can enjoy wine and dinner before cutting a rug during dance lessons with professional tango instructors or open dance parties.
Perhaps it’s the slow, bluesy chords flowing from the guitarist in the corner that compel the customer to put down her drink, pick up a stick of chalk, and scrawl a wistful message on the bar. Or perhaps it’s the flicker of candles––their golden halos staving off the city night––that has inspired this misty-eyed inscription. Far from being annoyed at the graffiti now adorning his workspace, the bartender leans over to read the patron’s message, smiling knowingly at the freshly penned late-night bulletin. With a grin and a poured glass of wine, he coaxes a smile from her as she swipes her words from the board.
Such intimate, inviting evenings are a regular occurrence at Sweet Grapes Wine Bar, where a vast collection of vinous libations and snacks keep guests chatting and laughing into the wee hours of the morning. The chalkboard-topped bar affords customers a blank expanse to fill with favorite quotes or high-school locker combinations, while an ever-changing lineup of musicians floods the space with live tunes on a regular basis.
Fusing the best parts of a posh New York nightspot and a low-key Moroccan hideaway, Disiac Lounge graces nightly crowds with a menu of falafels, paninis, and cheese plates to pair with a panoply of sumptuous cocktails. Plush red stools line the neon-lit bar, where tenders whip up a host of chocolate-liqueur-infused libations, stir signature martinis in 16 flavors, and pour spirits aged in the choicest of camel humps. Bedecked with hints of crimson and gold, the intimate lounge plays host to a daily happy hour, and can be reserved in advance for private parties. Profilers from New York magazine praise the laid-back lounge for its mesmerizing interior, and maintain the bar's real draw lies in "pleasant patio […] laden with lanterns and Moroccan-style poufs for perching." Readers also chimed in with an almost-perfect 9 out of 10 review, only previously achieved when Roger Ebert reviewed the film adaptation of Ebert: An Autobiography.