New York City
Sushi on Jones: Sushi fans missing David Bouhadana can now find the master at a tiny kiosk in the new Bowery Market. Unfortunately, Bouhadana isn’t making the sushi, but it’s his operation. And at $50 for 12 pieces and a hand roll, it’s still worth a visit (and it’s BYOB).
Pondicheri: An outlet of Houston’s popular Pondicheri has finally landed in NYC with Indian-inflected breakfast offerings, like a roti wrap with masala eggs, morning thali and coconut pancakes. At lunch, there are salads, curries and kebabs, whereas dinner, soon to follow, will be a bit less casual.
Ladybird: Ravi DeRossi’s conversion of his restaurants and bars to all meat-free establishments is charging forward with this vegetable tapas spot and bar in the former Bourgeois Pig space. On the menu, there’s vegetable charcuterie; a trio of gazpachos including honeydew, watermelon and corn; and quinoa croquettes with Sichuan salsa.
Fifty: The space that once housed Commerce sat empty for quite a while, but now, it’s back with the kitchen helmed by Ecuadorian-born Luis Jaramillo. He’s cooking dishes, like fluke ceviche with smoked uni, cilantro, lime and sweet potato, and stout-marinated roast chicken with asparagus in a mint-oregano sauce.
Afghani Kabob House: Traditional Afghan dishes, like kebabs in beef, chicken and lamb varieties, are on the menu at this Beverly Hills restaurant, alongside mantu, or dumplings, and quabili pallow, or lamb shank with raisins, carrots and rice.
Revival: Crista Luedtke knows a thing or two about Sonoma dining; she owns a slew of places in wine country. Her newest venture is a redo of the restaurant at Applewood Inn and Spa, and it’s swanky. The team relies on locally foraged items, like sea beans and seaweed, for the dishes, and dinner options include duck breast with edible flowers, blackberries and beets.
Dixie: Southern food gets a modern touch in dishes like country ham with grilled peaches, arugula and fromage blanc; succotash with catfish, soy beans, squash, corn and harissa; and a pimento cheese tamale with a fried green tomato.
Duke’s Counter: After an afternoon at the National Zoo, stop by this place for burgers, fries and a well-stocked bar. Do late-night drinks on the patio, which is open until 2 a.m., or hit up the bottomless brunch, if a mimosa in each hand with a full English breakfast is your style.
801 Restaurant & Bar: The neon sign says Good Vibes Only, and that’s exactly what you’ll find on the rooftop bar of this soon-to-be ultimate happy hour spot. After a round of drinks, head into the brightly lit dining area for pan-seared cauliflower served on a bed of vibrant sweet potato purėe or classic steak frites.
Prohibition Creamery: An even subtler way to drink than sipping from a flask? Boozy ice cream—and in flavors like signature bourbon and tiramisu, as well as a pineapple tequila sorbet. Those who take an 18th Amendment approach to their dessert can enjoy booze-free options, like dark chocolate sorbet and salted caramel.
Toss: East Coast meets Lone Star in the best form possible here—pizza. Specifically, thin-crust pies topped with smoked brisket, onions and pickles. There are also dreamy apps, like stuffed pretzels and loaded potato chips, plus enough margaritas to quench your thirst for days.
Snooze, an A.M. Eatery: Anyone who’s ever asked for a brunch rec in Denver knows how much Colorado residents love this morning chain. And it’s clear why: A place that offers a pancake flight (including the famous pineapple upside-down flavor) is the place to be. With locations in California, Austin and Arizona, this is the first for Houston.
Rusted Crow: The distiller by the same now has a restaurant that channels modern steampunk like no other. To eat, there’s a pico burger with fried avocado, Flamin’ Hot Cheetos and queso fresco, and a mac ‘n cheese burger, plus a couple of veggie options, including a Brussels sprout salad. Since this is a distillery after all, there are, of course, cocktails.
Bulla Gastrobar: Find the second location of this tapas joint in Doral, where the cured meats and cheese flow as freely as the wine. There’s also a whole section of the menu devoted to eggs: Don’t stop at tortilla español and ham croquettes, though, because brandy-infused brioche French toast is waiting for you on the dessert menu.
All Day: The light-up sign behind this coffee bar, which has the biggest La Marzocco Strada espresso machine in the world, ensures you know right away that any of the 10 coffee menu items are not to be missed. Pair your drink with a runny egg sandwich or sweet riffs on Hostess cupcakes and Twix bars. You’ll never want to leave.