You know a restaurant opening is an important one when, a few months later, you can't imagine New York without it. 2012, despite plenty of closures even before a catastrophic storm that crippled, closed, or delayed so many restaurants, was a fantastic year for eating in the city. Here are my favorites of the year: not just full-service restaurants, but the odd bakery, cocktail bar, and Mediterranean lunch joint thrown in for good measure.
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Looking back on 2012, here are the bites and slurps I remember most fondly. From oysters to fried chickpeas to soba and uni, here we go...
Only after putting together my list did I realize that a full seven out of eight of the very best bites I had in New York this year were from East Asian restaurants. Not a single burger or pizza on the list!
Salty and briny with a metallic twang and more than a hint of iodine, sea urchin is (along with oysters) the most ocean-evocative food in the world, and as a seafood lover and lifelong coastal resident, I'm often in the mood to have the ocean evoked to me. Here are seven of my favorite ways to get sea urchin in New York. Some are simple, some are more complex, all are delicious.
I've long been scouring New York for what Ed Levine aptly describes as the "Holy Grail of Sushi": the one sushi joint where uncompromisingly fresh fish and perfectly cooked rice can be enjoyed without pretentious attitude and at a reasonable price. With the opening of Neta, I believe I finally have an answer.