Indian cuisine is famously complex, but diners at Koyla Indian Restaurant get at least a peek at how it's prepared. The restaurant's signature cooking method is right in the name—koyla means "coal"—and chefs use its heat in full view within an open kitchen. Cinnamon and cloves, garlic and saffron fill the air as marinated chicken, shrimp, and goat simmer and sizzle. Although grounded in the cuisine of Northern India, founder Deep Singh and his chefs demonstrate a strong taste for experimentation. That's evident in the large menu's Indo-Chinese section, which holds hybrids such as chili paneer—the traditional Indian cheese spiked with house-made chili sauce. Pesto chicken and calamari masala reflect Singh's time as the proprietor of a small Italian cafe.
A mural of an especially cuddly-looking Taj Mahal brightens one wall of Koyla's softly-lit dining room. The motif continues as painted chili peppers wind around the room behind an ample buffet, served alongside champagne on the weekends.
From the bustling streets of Times Square to the equally vivacious streets of Hong Kong, people walk around with smiles after enjoying the japanese barbecue cuisine at Gyu-Kaku. The restaurant has more than 700 locations worldwide, each rooted in the belief that some of the strongest bonds between friends are forged at the dinner table. Groups dine on a huge variety of Japanese dishes, from popular meat and veggie dishes such as Harami Skirt Steak, Kalbi Short Rib, and Mushroom Medley - to unique Japanese-American appetizers such as the Spicy Tuna Volcano, Pork Gyoza Dumplings, and Chicken Karaage. The real excitement takes place around individual grills, however, where diners can barbecue their own slabs of filet mignon, grilled ahi tuna, or chicken with basil sauce until they are ideally tender or encircled by on-duty firemen.
The resident chefs at McAlan's Pub & Grill channel Irish and American traditions to construct their menu of pub grub. Limber chomping muscles with starters of steamer clams ($10) whose fresh manila clams are set afloat in a pool of white-wine garlic broth. Buttermilk crackling chicken ($11) arrives accompanied by biscuits and country sausage gravy and Del Mar fish 'n' chips ($10) armor fresh cod in an exoskeleton of tempura ale batter to protect its flaky insides. All-you-can-eat brunch, 10 a.m.–2 p.m. on Sunday mornings, rewards early-rising appetites and provides late-rising roosters with a false sense of accomplishment. Stockpile offerings from the made-to-order omelet bar or pile plates high with french toast and buttermilk waffles.
In 1964, Gus Agiortis emigrated from Greece to Canada and opened a pizza shop called Boston Pizza and Spaghetti House. This humble pizza joint quickly evolved into a full-service restaurant and eventually adopted a new name and spawned more than 400 franchised locations throughout North America. Staying true to their roots, each restaurant's staff spends a portion of every day handcrafting pizzas with made-from-scratch dough and high-quality meats, cheeses, and veggies. Patrons share these gourmet pies—along with pastas, wings, ribs, burgers, and other hearty pub eats—in the restaurant's family-friendly dining area with massive screens that showcase sports action and regional chess tournaments.
Tropica Restaurant and Bar builds on classic American fare with inventive renditions of pizzas, burgers, and tacos. From behind the restaurant's sleek, wooden bar, mixologists craft cocktails and draft beers and pour sangria by the pitcher or glass. Flat-screen TVs and hanging lamps illuminate the dining area, a mere formality since forks rely on echolocation to find food.
Havana Cigar and Wine Club provides guests with fine cigars, wines, and craft beers in setting of rustic luxury. The wood-paneled interior boasts both a smoking lounge and a smoke-free beer and wine bar. The spaces share decorative elements such as old barrels reused as tables, as well as a view. Windows here look out upon the town, an especially beautiful sight at night when the skyline is thoroughly lit up.