Presenting some of New York’s best multicultural dining destinations you can’t miss. Curated by Michael Schachner, Wine Enthusiast Magazine Contributing Editor.
Txikito | Basque tapas in Chelsea by husband-wife chef/owners Eder Montero from Bilbao and Alex Raij, born in Argentina. Txikito aims to capture the many ways that food is enjoyed throughout the Basque country, from its simple bar foods to its more sophisticated signature dishes. It is an unencumbered cuisine, one where humble ingredients like beans and peppers share the same value at the table as aged farmhouse cheeses, pristine fish and seafood, and unique breeds of lamb and cattle. http://www.txikitonyc.com/
Hanjan | Located in the Flatiron District, this modern spot elevates humble Korean small plates by Seoul-born Hooni Kim. Inspired by the joomak, an old tavern offering weary travelers good food, good drinks and a place to rest… this concept was popular across South Korea in 1960s and 1970s. Many of the dishes at Hanjan are meant to evoke the feeling of Korean street markets offering comfort food enjoyed by people in Korea in their everyday life.
Empellon Taqueria | Gourmet tacos and great cocktails in West Village from Mexico-obsessed, award winning American chef Alex Stupak. Empellon opened their doors in 2011 with the intention of treating tacos with a high level of respect and serving them in a fun environment. Which is how Chef Alex Stupak believes tacos should be enjoyed. The menu was designed with the idea that most ingredients worth eating can benefit further by being placed atop a well-made tortilla. The kitchen team explores the ubiquitous flavors that we all love about Mexican cooking in the US as well as the less obvious ones that we all should love. http://empellon.com/taqueria
Le Bilboquet | Philippe Delgrange has resurrected his French bistro near Fifth Avenue and Madison Avenue’s shopping hub. The new location is modern, airy and spacious. Say bonjour and merci, order the poulet cajun and salade nicoise. Le Bilboquet attracts an exquisite crowd and approaches its food in quintessential European bistro. http://lebilboquetny.com/
Café Sabarsky at Neue Galerie | You’ll find German and Austrian art like Klimt, Viennese-style coffee and bountiful pastries. Located near Guggenheim and the Met on upper Fifth Avenue, Café Sabarsky, which bears the name of Neue Galerie co-founder Serge Sabarsky, draws its inspiration from the high-minded Viennese cafés that served as important centers of intellectual and artistic life at the turn of the century. It’s outfitted with period objects, including lighting fixtures by Josef Hoffmann, furniture by Adolf Loos, and banquettes that are upholstered with a 1912 Otto Wagner fabric. A grand piano graces one corner of the café and is used for all cabaret, chamber, and classical music performances at the museum, which resumes in March 2014. Recommendations: Hungarian beef goulash, sacher torte, apple strudel. http://www.neuegalerie.org/
Added Bonus: M. Wells Dinette at MoMA/PS1 | Welcome to old school kitsch. M. Wells Dinette, at MoMA PS1 in Long Island City, is a cafeteria-style restaurant by Montreal chef Hugue Dufour and Sarah Obraitis, the culinary masterminds behind the popular M. Wells Diner (now closed). The dinette pays homage to the building’s former identity as a schoolhouse with communal tables and a perpetually changing menu. Open during the daytime only, closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Recommendations: Rabbit and foie gras terrine; Bibim Wells (bibimbop); pumpkin tres leches. http://momaps1.org/
By Michael Schachner, a New York-based journalist specializing in wine, food and travel. His articles appear regularly in Wine Enthusiast, for which he is a contributing editor and a member of the magazine’s tasting panel. In addition, he is a wine consultant and professional speaker. His areas of wine expertise include Spain and South America. You can find Michael on Twitter @wineschach
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