Diaspora

10 Must-Visit Restaurants For This Summer – Town & Country

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From Maine to Manhattan and beyond, these are the best new eateries for unforgettable meals.
From a nautical-inspired boite to a luxurious take on contemporary Korean food, these 10 restaurants are the must-have reservations this summer.
Alex and Miles Pincus, the two nautical-obsessed brothers behind New York’s iconic shipboard restaurants Grand Banks and Pilot, have opened Holywater, their first bar/eatery on land, in a magical maximalist subterranean space in Tribeca.
Designed by Miles and Alex—a trained architect—the rooms are a master class in collecting and curation. The walls are chockablock with photographs, paintings, works on paper, nautical memorabilia, and a deeply personal collection of ephemera. From Cy Twombly to Spuds MacKenzie and entire boat transoms in between, Holywater’s layered and narrative decor is a feast for the eyes, making it one of the most beautiful boîtes in the city.
It’s no surprise that seafood is the star at Holywater. Culinary Director Kerry Heffernan and Executive Chef Sam Gasner have created a straightforward and delicious menu of shellfish towers, caviar tater tots, lobster frites, crawfish Étouffée (a nod to the brothers’ Louisiana upbringing), and one of the best burgers in town. Celebrated bartender and Beverage Director Erik Trickett has created a long list of New Orleans- and New York City-inspired cocktails as well as a nice selection of wine and craft beers.
Two New York fine dining veterans, Chef Colin Wyatt (Eleven Madison Park, DANIEL) and General Manager Daniel Gorlas (Per Se), have decamped north to open Twelve, a seasonally focused, modern American restaurant that pays homage to the beloved New England foodie town of Portland, ME.
Nestled within a carefully restored, 127 year-old building on the Portland waterfront, Wyatt and his team work closely with local farmers and purveyors to deliver a sustainably sourced, ingredient-driven prix-fixe menu that highlights the best of Maine’s bounty.
Dishes will change frequently based on ingredient availability and include options such as hake with seaweed and tartar sauce, golden potato tart with cheddar and mizuna, hen of wood mushrooms glazed with porcini broth and fermented mustard greens, and cod slow cooked with whey and trout roe. Desserts by pastry chef Georgia Macon, include a maple ice cream sandwich with chocolate and cocoa nibs and rhubarb galette baked with pistachio and whipped custard. There’s a list of diverse wines from all over the world—with a heavy focus on wines from central Europe and North America—and cocktails, spearheaded by bar manager Sylvi Roy, highlight artisanal craftsmanship with a nod to local ingredients. The Comeback Kid made with aquavit, green chartreuse, local sugar snap pea, lime leaf, and tonic water is a perfect example.
Chef Brian Kim’s first restaurant, Oiji, in Manhattan’s East Village, was one of the first to introduce the city’s diners to creative, contemporary, and refined Korean dining when it opened in 2015. His latest venture, Oiji Mi in the Flatiron district, is an evolution of this concept of “new Korean,” complete with a luxurious interior inspired by a traditional Korean “hanok” (traditional house) by award-winning hospitality design firm AvroKo.
The five course pre-fixe menu focuses on traditional yet reimagined Korean cuisine. Each beautifully plated dish thoughtfully merges all the qualities of traditional banchan, perfectly marrying savory, sweet, sour, salty, bitter, and umami. Highlights include a velvety foie gras with bokbunja (wild raspberry) gastrique and brioche; a fresh take on the traditional Bo Ssam with heritage pork belly, oysters on the half shell, spicy mustard mignonette, and cabbage leaves; a summery chili lobster ramyun with scallion, garlic, and sugar snap peas; and Chapssal donuts with Gruyère, raclette, sweet rice, and crème fraîche ice cream.
Beverage Director, Chris Clark, has created a cocktail program that focuses on traditional Korean ingredients and leans on philosophies of balance, depth, and creativity. There is also an extensive wine list which emphasizes smaller grower producers that work in an artisanal manner.
Fresh off the success of The Nines, his sexy downtown piano bar, Jon Neidich has opened Le Dive, a buzzy new neighborhood bar & cafe in the heart of New York’s Lower East SIde.
Inspired by Paris’ timeworn tabacs and bars de vin, this instant Dimes Square classic features Venetian plaster walls, antique mirrors, brass details, custom back painted glass tables, as well as vintage light fixtures and additional curios sourced from Paris’s iconic flea market. “I’ve always been drawn to Parisian tabacs—not only for their classic design, but also for how they function as neighborhood cornerstones, where locals of all ages come together to drink and eat throughout the day and night,” says Neidich.
The offerings are perfectly paired with the transportive environs. Beverage Director Ashley Santoro has assembled a drinks list that includes perfectly made martinis, playful variations on French libations, non-alcoholic offerings, and a wide selection of natural wines from low intervention producers to go along with Executive Chef Nicole Gajadhar’s rotating menu of traditional bistro dishes and small plates, including Niçoise salad, charcuterie, cheese, pâté, and tinned fish.
Haitian cuisine and ingredients from the Pacific Northwest collide at Kann, a new live-fire restaurant from James Beard Award-winning chef Gregory Gourdet.
One of Portland, Oregon’s most anticipated openings, Kann’s menu is a celebration of Gourdet’s Haitian heritage but also includes dishes inspired by the cuisines of the African, the Caribbean, and the Southeast Asian diaspora. Barbecue originated in Haiti and that spirit of open fire cooking will anchor the cuisine at Kann.
Kann will also feature full and zero-proof cocktails that take advantage of the fruits, spices and flavors of the Caribbean, as well as Portland’s local bounty. Downstairs, Bar Sousól will serve drinks and dishes inspired by the cuisines of Haiti, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, and Mexico.

NoMI, the beloved Chicago restaurant, has reopened at the Park Hyatt after a five month, $60 million dollar renovation of the hotel.
With three distinct spaces, all with sweeping views of Chicago’s historic Water Tower and Lake Michigan, Executive Chef Terence Zubieta is offering menus centered around locally sourced ingredients with artful flavors. “It’s been incredibly exciting to help redefine the evolution of NoMI’s cuisine in a city with such storied culinary history and influence.” says Zubieta.
NoMI Kitchen offers modern American cuisine rooted in French techniques. Standout dishes new to the menu include the Rillette, a twist on the classic dish featuring duck, lemongrass pork confit, and roasted garlic, and the Snapper, where the fish sits on a celeriac root puree and is topped with dill beurre blanc sauce, pickled cucumber, and baby carrot.
The NoMI Lounge features a sprawling bar with a spotlight on local art, a renowned beverage program, and an exclusive six-seat sushi counter featuring fresh fish flown in from Japan. NoMI Garden’s vibrant open-air terrace offers guests a luxurious respite from the bustling city below. Boasting a 30-foot bar with an ivory granite countertop, the outdoor haven features an artisanal cocktail program and panoramic views.

Chef John Fraser’s new French brasserie, La Marchande, has just opened at the Wall Street Hotel, a boutique property housed in a historic building on the site of the original New York Stock Exchange.
Conjuring a café society vibe, the chic dining room is anchored by an ornately carved wooden bar and accented with green marble, brass and antiqued mirrors, and a scallop-patterned pink marble floor.
Fraser, best known for IRIS and North Fork Table & Inn, lived in Paris and worked at the revered Taillevent and Maison Blanche. He, along with Executive Chef Rick Horiike, are modernizing this beloved cuisine by embracing a global pantry and techniques. Examples include inventive rice paper rolls filled with unconventional ingredients, like beef tartare, an interpretation of lobster Américaine with coconut milk instead of the traditional sauce with butter and cream, steak au poivre prepared in a wok, and elaborate fresh seafood towers that salute NYC’s raw bar tradition.
Beverage Director/Advanced Sommelier Amy Racine has assembled a 120-bottle French-focused wine list, spanning 10 classic and 30 sub-regions of France. The drinks list, also by Racine, celebrates vermouth, France’s gift to cocktail culture, including the Saffrantine, the bar’s signature Martini made with Vodka, Cap Corse Blanc and pickled baby eggplant; and the Pineapple des Charentes, a Tiki take with Pineau de Charentes, pineapple, Bigallet China China, lemon, and tarragon.
Boston’s newest Italian restaurant focuses on the country’s coastal cuisine. Faccia Brutta, the first project in six years from legendary Beantown chefs Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette, takes inspiration from seaside regions like Liguria, Sicily, and Sardinia.
Grilled octopus with black rice, guanciale and fava beans, sea bream crudo with Sicilian olive oil and cherries, squid ink trottole with Maine uni, melted leeks and Calabrian chili, and bucatini with Gulf shrimp and crab in a saffron tomato sauce with pine nuts are just a few of the dishes that highlight the diversity of seaside Italy.
Desserts include Baci di Dama, a popular hazelnut chocolate cookie with Nutella, and bomboloni served with house-made rhubarb jam, and there’s an extensive list of cocktails, like the 1794, a version of the Negroni with Campari, rye, sweet vermouth, chocolate mole bitters, and an orange twist, and the Spa, a lemon verbena vodka spritz with sweet and sour notes from raspberry shrub.
A Bensonhurst native who’s following in his dad’s footsteps, chef Sal Lamboglia’s Cafe Spaghetti is an ode to the classic neighborhood Italian restaurant. Nestled in the heart of Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, the restaurant features an intimate dining room with a wraparound cafe bar, a fully enclosed outdoor space, and a lush ivy-lined backyard garden with 40 seats, ideal for summer outdoor dining.
After nearly 15 years as an integral player on Chef Andrew Carmellini’s team—he opened Locanda Verde, The Dutch, Lafayette, and led the Bar Primi team as chef-partner for seven years—Lamboglia opened Cafe Spaghetti as his first solo project. Family recipes are found across the menu, including his mother Patrizia’s eggplant parm, and tiramisu, from Sal’s Naples-born father. Other menu highlights include octopus insalata, cacio e pepe rice balls, his Nonna’s Genovese ragu with fusilli, and ricotta agnolotti.
53, a new contemporary Asian restaurant, has just opened in an architecturally stunning space within the 82-story, Jean Nouvel-designed residential tower at 53 West 53rd Street, adjoining the Museum of Modern Art in Midtown Manhattan.
Helmed by Michelin-starred chef Akmal Anuar, 53 features a broad array of Chinese and Japanese-influenced dishes, along with the flavors of Southeast Asian. Highlights include a delicious eel club which features grilled eel, seared foie gras and pickled cherries, soup-filled chicken and truffle xiao long bao; sambal-tossed snow pea leaves; fiery salt-and-pepper squid, and an impossibly light mango pudding with yogurt ice cream.
The extensive Asian-inspired cocktail list includes the Sesame Sour with Russells Rye, banana, black sesame, creme de cacao, lemon, and egg white, and the Singapore Sip with Roku gin, pineapple cordial, Benedictine, Cherry Heering, and lime.

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