We’ve picked the best new additions to New York City’s bar and restaurant scenes for December 2017.
The South of France is the focus at St. Tropez, a restaurant and wine bar in the West Village with a Provençal feel. The all-French wine list includes 45 selections by the glass; the food menu, from a chef who earned a Michelin star for his last restaurant in Paris, has many Provençal specialties such as farcis niçois (tomatoes stuffed with ground beef) and daube provençale (beef in red wine sauce)… and the heaven that is tarte tropézienne for dessert.
Where: 304 West 4th St., New York City
When: December 6, 2017
There’s a decided Mediterranean influence—specifically, southern and coastal Italian—at Scampi, first visible in the airy space through touches like plaster detailing and distressed wood. The chef is formerly of Ai Fiori, so you’ll find the pastas for which he was known there, such as lumache with manila clams and tarragon pesto. And yes, you’ll find the restaurant’s namesake dish, too, in frequently changing variations, as well as other seafood like swordfish with roasted fennel, clams, and chickpeas. The sizable wine list has a focus on affordable Italian bottles.
Where: 30 West 18th St., New York City
When: December 6, 2017
DaDong, perhaps the world’s best-known place to get roast peking duck, has finally come to New York. This location joins 10 DaDongs in Beijing, four in Shanghai, and two in Chengdu. The NYC branch is every bit as palatial as its Chinese brethren, occupying 17,500 square feet over two floors, with an expansive terrace. The highlight, naturally, is the duck—whole or half carved tableside and served with soft wrappers, crispy buns, and sauces. But there are more than 80 other items on the expansive menu, including squid ink soup with tofu threads and black truffle; sweet and sour pork ribs with powdered sugar; and braised sea cucumber with young wheat grains and leeks.
Where: 3 Bryant Park, New York City
When: December 8, 2017
Park Slopers who mourned the closing of longtime neighborhood favorite Franny’s have reason to rejoice: Fausto, another Italian-influenced spot is filling the space, this one from wine pro Joe Campanale and chef Erin Shambura, who worked together at L’Artusi. The pizza oven will now turn out dishes like roasted porgy with red onions, kalamata olives, and scallions; other dishes include antipasti like red snapper ceviche with citrus and fennel, and pastas like tagliatelle with lamb shank ragu, anchovies, and pecorino. As one has come to expect from Campanale, the wine list is well-selected yet accessible.
Where: 348 Flatbush Ave., Brooklyn, New York
When: December 9, 2017
Bushwick has a festive new Mexican lunch spot in La Loncheria, from the team behind beloved Hecho en Dumbo. The menu is anchored by tortas, or Mexican sandwiches (try the La Niña Popov, with lamb belly barbacoa, black bean hummus, and pickled tomatillo), and includes other items like grilled octopus with tomatillo marmalade and an array of tacos.
Where: 41 Wilson Ave., Brooklyn, New York
When: December 15, 2017