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New York’s Sprightliest Spring Dishes

Sautéed-Morel-MushroomsEvery season has its perks, but it’s tough for any of them to hold a candle to spring; with its fleeting cornucopia of coveted, earth-warmed delicacies, such as spindly asparagus, sugar-sweet peas, and fiercely revered ramps.  So here are just a handful of greenmarket-focused restaurants, that have made over their menus to reflect the very best of spring, from abcV, and its sauté of morel mushrooms, to Union Square Café, and its rhubarb-sanctified Squab.

AbcV

AbcV
29 Norman Ave
Greenpoint,New York 11222
(347) 966-2092

The “V” stands for vegetables in Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s first meat-free entry to his ABC dynasty, serving all-day fare such as Shelling Beans in Treviso dressing, Whole Artichokes laked in Sicilian olive oil, Ramen in meyer lemon bouillon strewn with pea shoots, and a mix of Warm Cremini and Morel Mushrooms, tossed with sherry vinegar, garlic and tarragon.

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Atla

Atla
372 Lafayette St
NoHo,New York 10012
(646) 837-6464

Enrique Olvera’s casual NoHo cantina places a much larger emphasis on vegetables than his Flatiron stunner, Cosme; adding a decidedly green tinge to Mexican street staples like Kale Tamales, Guacamole and Goat Cheese Molletas, and steak tartare “Chiles Rellenos” served in a fresh, hollowed-out poblano.

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Gloria

Gloria
401 W 53rd St
Midtown West,New York 10019
(212) 956-0709

Leave it to a Le Bernardin alum to open NYC’s first so called “pescatarian” restaurant, lavishing equal attention on East Coast seafood and locally-sourced vegetables; resulting in options like Squid dotted with sweet peas and lemon butter, Heirloom Beans in mussel broth swiped with sunflower pesto, and Red Snapper and asparagus in a red wine béarnaise.

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Union Square Café

Union Square Café
101 E 19th St
Union Square,New York 10003
(212) 243-4020

There might as well be an underground passageway, leading directly from the sprawling greenmarket to the kitchen of Danny Meyer’s seminal café, to supply provisions for Chilled Gulf Shrimp with spring onions, Heritage Chicken Tortelloni with buttered pea leaves and ramps, and Pan Roasted Squab with ramp polenta and rhubarb.

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Metta

Metta
197 Adelphi St
Fort Greene,New York 11205
(718) 233-9134

Having worked under Francis Mallman, Norberto Piattoni has proved equally inspired by wood-fired cooking at his own, Argentina-inflected restaurant, serving smoke-imbued specials such as Crispy Lamb with sour cucumber-squash puree, Market Fish with roasted turnips, radish and kohlrabi, and Oysters anointed with charred ramp mignonette.

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Norman

Norman
40 8th Ave
West Village,New York 10014
(212) 924-2280

Helmed by the sustainable Scandinavian dream team of Claus Meyer, Fredrik Berselius and former Colonie chef, Andrew Whitcomb, this Brooklyn newcomer is essentially a smorgasbord of spring eats; think Crab Toast with dill pollen and radish, Maitake Mushroom Tart with a split pea crust, and Buffalo Milk Yogurt swirled with lemon verbena and rhubarb preserves.

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Rouge Tomate

Rouge Tomate
126-128 W. 18th St.
Chelsea,New York 10011
(646) 237-8977

One of NYC’s original, produce-driven, health conscious restaurants, the recently relocated Rouge Tomate is now ideally situated near the Union Square Market, as opposed to tucked away on the Upper East Side.  Which allows them to more effortlessly realize their farm-to-table concept, buoyed by dishes like Swiss Chard Gratin, Walu Carpaccio with snap peas, Spelt Corzetti mingled with white asparagus, and even a Bison Burger dolloped in ramp aioli.

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Delaware & Hudson

Delaware & Hudson
135 N 5th St
Brooklyn,New York 11249
(718) 218-8191

Chef Patti Jackson has collaborated with greenmarket mainstay, Rick Bishop, on an incredible all-ramp spring menu, featuring numerous courses including Ramp, Morel and Farmer’s Cheese Pie, Ricotta Ramp Dumplings with ramp pesto, Wall-Eyed Pike with sunchoke puree and charred ramps, and Tagliatelle with ramp and bacon carbonara.

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