2023 Restaurant Review Cont.


Casa Mono’s Spanish-inspired cuisine offers unforgetta­ble tapas that reflect Spain’s legendary Costa Brava region. Essential by Christophe is a sleek new eatery offering fantastic French fare made even better by the impeccable service. Who’d have thought you could come right out of the Holland Tunnel and into a setting straight from Paris for a magnificen­t meal at Brasserie Fouquet’s? The theatrical preparatio­n of the crêpes Suzette is enough to make the trip worthwhile. Why risk sanctions when you can walk into a corner of Moscow at Madison Avenue and 77th Street to get the most sublime buttery baked potato with a big dollop of any of the grades of caviar at Caviar Kaspia at the Mark? Marc Forgione isn’t catering to peasants at Peasant, where the outstandin­g Italian food is as zippy as its young clientele. Verōnika’s space is beyond gorgeous and its food beyond sublime. The presentati­on of the saffron crème caramel flambéed tableside is great theater—and equally great tasting. Through a door concealed by a painting in an art gallery, you enter an intimate room with counter service and two tables at Frevo, which features contempora­ry fusion fare. The tasting-menu-only approach, which has become tiresomely ubiquitous in the eatery world today, is here redeemed by the flavorful and often outstandin­g quality of the dishes served. Cecchi’s is a hopping, happening place where the fine food isn’t as absurdly expensive as it is at so many other top spots. The experience is made even better by the Art Deco interior, complete with fun murals, comfortabl­e banquettes and glorious light fixtures. Torrisi offers its own take on Italian classics, and with its big, open kitchen it provides a show—with you a part of it.

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