The 10 Hottest NEW Restaurants In New York City

Atera restaurant

Photo: Henry Blodget

In hustling, bustling New York City, restaurants open and close with such frequency that it’s hard to keep up.But sometimes notable new restaurants open that create such a buzz that the whole city seems to scramble to get in the doors.

These are New York City’s 10 hottest new restaurants, according to the editors at Zagat.

It’s no secret that Brooklyn is quickly becoming the coolest borough in New York City, and this list attests to that with half of the restaurants on this list opening in Brooklyn.

There’s an emphasis on tiny high-end eateries with impeccable service and daily-changing tasting menus offering inventive, fresh cuisine. But there are also a few new casual joints here, including a laid-back Thai eatery in Brooklyn and a hip party-centric Chinese restaurant on the Lower East Side.


9 Great Jones St.

Since it opened in the beginning of the year, this sceney, glitzy restaurant has been regularly packed with the young, the fashionable, and the beautiful.

And though people come here for the scene, the food by Chef Mads Refslund (co-founder of Copenhagen's Noma), is an equal draw, with fresh farm-to-table fare.

Modern American and Nordic cuisine feature on the menu, which is surprisingly affordable.


77 Worth St.

Only 17 diners can fit in this tiny TriBeCa high-end eatery at a time. But that hasn't stopped New Yorkers from vying for one of these coveted seats.

Portland chef Matthew Lightner uses modernist cooking techniques and foraged ingredients to come up with an inventive nightly tasting menu.

It's not cheap--the 10-course tasting menu costs $150, plus another $90 for wine pairings--but we've tried it and deemed it 'the most amazing restaurant in the world.'


261 Moore St., Brooklyn

Hidden behind one of Brooklyn's most talked-about restaurants, Roberta's, Blanca is a secret fine-dining gem.

But now that the secret is out, diners are already cloying for spots in this tiny 12-seat restaurant.

At $180 per person (not including beverage, tax, or gratuity), the seafood-centric tasting menu is expensive, but if the food at Roberta's is any indication, diners here can expect an impressive dining experience.

Empellon Cocina

105 First Ave.

After successfully opening Empellon Taqueria in the West Village, Alex Stupak decided to bring his modern innovative Mexican cuisine across town to the East Village.

Empellon Cocina is even higher end than the original taqueria, serving elegant yet creative dishes like masa spaetzle with bacon and a duck egg or mezcal-cured trout with cream cheese, roe, and sal de gusanosin in a sophisticated dining room.


90 Wythe Ave., Brooklyn

This tiny eatery, located in Williamsburg's Kinfolk Studios, serves contemporary Nordic-inspired dishes made from fresh, local produce.

Creative chef-owners Fredrick Berselius and Richard Kuo use both new and old culinary techniques to create their 5-course tasting menu--a steal at $45.

Note that Frej is only open Monday through Wednesday, and reservations are booked up for weeks in advance.

Mission Chinese Food

154 Orchard St.

This Lower East Side outpost of Danny Bowien's restaurant of the same name in San Francisco has been packed since the day it opened its doors.

With loud music, a free keg for those waiting for a table, and a trendy young crowd, the vibe here definitely runs toward party.

The Chinese food is supremely spicy, but there's plenty of beer to help put the fire out.

Pok Pok NY

127 Columbia St., Brooklyn

Celebrated Portland Chef Andy Ricker created a lot of buzz when he opened this casual Thai eatery in a remote section of the Brooklyn waterfront.

But people come here for the casual vibe, quick service, and cheap and delicious dishes, like Cha Ca 'La Vong' (Vietnamese catfish marinated in spices and served with vermicelli noodles, peanuts, and cilantro) or Kai Yaang (roasted hen stuffed with lemongrass, garlic, pepper, and cilantro).

Cool off with one of the house made drinking vinegars, which taste better than they sound. Eat in the small dining room or in the quaint garden out back.


NoMad Hotel, 1170 Broadway

Opened by the duo behind uber-successful Eleven Madison Park, this eatery inside the hotel of the same name is already creating a lot of buzz in the NYC restaurant world.

People are raving about the food--especially the $78 roasted chicken for two--served in this opulent, airy space.


80 Wythe Ave., Brooklyn

Located in the brand new Wythe Hotel in Williamsburg, Reynards has a hot and happening scene.

The food's not bad either. Prepared by chef Andrew Tarlow (formerly of Marlow and Sons), the menu here changes daily, depending on what's in season.


369 Seventh Ave., Brooklyn

Owned by former Top Chef contestant Dale Talde, Talde proves that some Top Chef contestants can actually cook.

Located in Park Slope, Talde offers flavorful, moderately priced, Asian-American cuisine in a casual setting.

Standouts on the menu include Singapore chilli soft shell crab banh mi and crispy oyster and bacon pad Thai. Yum.

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