Spring is, unsurprisingly, the ideal season to open a new restaurant — because during snowy, rainy, windy, freezing winter, who (save for the most intrepid diners) would choose to regularly leave the comfort of their homes, in order to traverse the frostbitten city in search of a meal? That’s why, as soon as the crocuses begin to emerge from the newly thawed ground, exciting eateries begin to pop up in earnest, and we’re tracking some of the most notable impending openings of spring 2015!
Chevalier: French throwback fare is experiencing a real renaissance in New York (consider the recently opened Le District, and Brooklyn’s L’Antagoniste, amongst others). And former Cru chef Shea Gallante, together with La Grenouille’s beloved maitre d’ Charles Masson, are perfectly positioned to further the movement with Chevalier, their new collaboration in the glitzy Baccarat Hotel.
Rebelle: While Richard Kuo will continue to concentrate his efforts on the respected Bowery small plates spot, Pearl & Ash, two of his partners have taken over the space next door, in order to open a wine-focused French restaurant. They’ve hired chef Daniel Eddy (formerly of Spring, in Paris), to oversee the modern menu, which will surely complement the seasonally inspired bottles curated by sommelier, Patrick Cappiello.
Lupulo: George Mendes should finally debut his Aldea follow-up this month. Sure to become a seriously popular dining destination around restaurant-desolate Penn Station, the rustic Portuguese restaurant will boast a seafood-centric menu, a wood-fired oven, a coffee bar and takeout window, and plenty of beers on tap.
The Grand Army: Talk about a Brooklyn dream team — this Boerum Hill oyster bar is the brainchild of Mile End’s Noah Bernamoff, Rucola’s Julian Brizzi, and Prime Meats cocktail impresario, Damon Boelte. In addition to briny bivalves, the menu will include other light items such as salads and open-faced sandwiches, made using locally sourced cheese, charcuterie and bread.
Bruno: The duo behind the acclaimed (but seriously tiny) tasting room, Box Kite, has joined forces with designer/restaurateur Demian Repucci, to open this Neapolitan-style pizzeria. But expect a lot more than char-crusted pies made with flour milled in the basement; they’ll also offer a reservations-only tasting menu, featuring dishes sure to be every bit as inventive as the high-flying fare they became known for at Box Kite.
Untitled: After years as the face of Gramercy Tavern, revered chef Michael Anthony is pulling double duty as executive chef of the upcoming Untitled (also within Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group). Located in the Whitney museum’s new location along the High Line, expect Anthony to stay true to his seasonal aesthetic, with Shaved Asparagus Salad paired with carrots and crispy quinoa, and Arctic Char with sugar snap peas and yuzu dressing.
La Gamelle: Motorino’s Mathieu Palombino will finally make good on his Chez Jef concept; a short-lived pop-up in the Bowery. And (see what we meant by the French revolution?) his a la carte menu will feature Gallic classics, such as Escargot, Steak Frites, Crepes Suzette and Chocolate Mousse.
Lilia: Although she consulted on the menu at Corkbuzz’s Chelsea Market outpost, Missy Robbins has been lying relatively low since cutting ties with A Voce; which she helped to win a coveted Michelin star. But great news for Brooklynites; Robbins is opening her very own casual Italian project (together with the Smile’s Matt Kliegman) in Williamsburg this spring, featuring house-cranked pastas, a wood-fired oven, and a separate takeout café.