Valentine’s Day maybe Hallmark’s favorite holiday, but it may not be yours. If you’re lucky enough to score a date, you might want to start contemplating your restaurant options now. Veterans at the Valentine’s reservation game have probably already secured their reservations (or enlisted their assistants), so I thought I’d offer a few Restaurant Girl Suggestions of my own:
Le Bernadin – If you want the best, this is pretty much as good as it gets.
155 W. 51 St., btwn. 6th & 7th Aves., (212)554-1515
Cafe Gray – Go for the magnificient park view, stay for the sumptuous short ribs.
10 Columbus Circle, 3rd floor, (212)823-6388.
Gramercy Tavern – They don’t call Danny Meyer the king of hospitality for nothing.
42 E. 20th St., btwn. Broadway & Park Aves., (212) 477-0777.
Veritas – Even the snobbiest of oeniphiles get weak in the knees here.
43 E. 20th St., btwn Park & Broadway Aves., (212)353-3700.
BEST DEAL IN TOWN
Del Posto – A glam settting, pasta by Batali, Bastianich does wine & Nicole Kaplan has a way with pastries. If that’s not enticing enough, there’s a $40 prix fixe menu available everyday, even Valentine’s Day.
85 10th Ave., at 16 St., (212)497-8090.
Tried And True Romantics
Cafe Des Artistes – If you’re a hopeless romantic, this is your guy.
1 W. 67th St., btwn, Broadway & CPW, (212)877-3500.
Picholine – Timeless elegance still reigns at Terrance
Brennan’s recently renovated institution, boasting the world’s most
dazzling cheese cart.
35 W. 64th St., btwn Broadway & CPW, (212)724-8585.
Blue Hill at Stone Barns – What’s more romantic than a chandelier-clad barn? Seriously.
630 Bedford St., Tarrytown, NY (914)366-3600.
Peasant – From the candlelight to the woodburning oven, this homey Italian succeeds without even trying.
194 Elizabeth St., btwn. Prince & Spring Sts., (212)965-9511.
Po – Even without Mario, this quaint West Village spot has a way with the almighty noodle.
31 Cornelia St., btwn. Bleecker & W. 4th Sts., (212)645-2189.
Blue Ribbon – There’s not a more perfect evening to canoodle over a tray of oysters and the most divinely decadent banana split the city has to offer.
97 Sullivan St., btwn. Prince & Spring Sts., (212)274-0404.
Mas – A sexy space, generous wine list and good food to boot.
39 Downing St., btwn. Bedford & Varick Sts., (212)255-1790.
Annisa – Anita Lo dazzles without making a fuss about it. One word: foie gras dumplings.
13 Barrow St., btwn. 7th Ave. & W. 4th Sts., (212)741-6699.
Place on West 10th – Score a table in front of the fireplace at this romantic oasis.
142 W. 10th St., btwn. Greenwich & 7th Aves., (212)462-2880.
Prune – Perfect for serious food lovers, this tiny gem packs a big punch.
54 East 1st. St., btwn. 1st. & 2nd Aves., (212)677-6211.
Dining as Distraction
L’Atelier De Robuchon – You don’t even have to talk and you’ll still have the perfect date, that is, if you can snag a seat at the poshest eating counter in NYC.
57 E. 57th St., btwn. 5th & Madison Aves., (212)350-6658.
Degustation – Keep your eyes on the kitchen, where Jack & Grace Lamb master the art of Spanish-French small plates.
239 5th St., btwn. 2nd & 3rd Aves., (212)979-1012.
The Spotted Pig – The contagious energy of this perpetually packed gastropub is outmatched only by April Bloomfield’s seasonal creations.
314 W. 11 St., at Greenwich St., (212)620-0393.
La Esquina – While the secret may be out on this swanky subterranean, tacos, tequila and candlelight will always be in style.
106 Kenmare St., at Cleveland Place, (646)613-7100.
Waverly Inn – If you’re looking to dine fireside on fashionable comfort food, you might want to start kissing the host’s ass right now.
16 Bank St., btwn. 4th & Waverly Sts,(no phone number)
Ssam Bar – The hippest pan-Asian “fast food” joint in town, use your hands as you feast on David Chang’s new menu.
207 3rd Ave., at 13 St., (212)254-3500.
Kuma Inn – A definitively unromantic setting, the global tapas are a delicious distraction from all of the “lovey dovey”-ridden restaurants on this fateful night.
113 Ludlow St., at Delancey St. (second floor), (212)833-8866.
Upstairs At Bouley – If you don’t mind sitting on top of strangers, you can simultaneously feast on juicy burgers & superior sushi in Bouley’s culinary playground.
130 W. Broadway, btwn. Duane & Church Sts., (212)608-5829.
Stay tuned, Restaurant Girl will be moving the Valentine’s
Bites List to a permanent page under Dining Destinations (coming very
**Don’t forget to subscribe for Restaurant Girl’s Weekly Newsletter**