Recently Opened Restaurants


by Julie Besonen, 12/24/2009

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Birdbath, Neighborhood Green Bakery
160 Prince St., 212-612-3066, SoHo, Manhattan
The iconic green exterior and Vesuvio Bakery awning that graces many a postcard remains, but the circa-1920 shop windows betray that change is afoot: instead of bread loaves, these days you'll find stacks of giant chocolate-chip cookies. Maury Rubin, of The City Bakery fame, has turned the shop into Birdbath, his third outpost of an eco-friendly concept featuring sweet and savory items made from organic ingredients. The coffee is organic, too, and roasted locally. Muffins (in flavors like rice milk, studded with red beans and ginger) share display space with luscious egg salad sandwiches and slabs of thin-crust pizza. To further lower its carbon footprint, goods are delivered via bicycle-driven cargo rickshaw.
67 First Ave., 212-979-6646, East Village, Manhattan
"Guayoyo," pronounced "wa-jo-jo," is Venezuelan dialect for a slightly watered down cup of coffee, often drunk after lunch (around 5pm or so) with a snack. And things do get going at 5pm at this homey corner spot, when, for two hours, an arepa with soup or salad is $8. There are 14 types of arepas to choose from (normally $4 to $7), the pancake-like, cornmeal-based bread wrapped around shredded beef and cheddar, tender roast pork and tomato or chopped octopus salad. Empanadas, another South American staple, are also here for snacking. Main courses include authentic Venezuelan-style chicken stew and short ribs.
Loading Dock
170 Tillary St., 646-355-7518, Downtown Brooklyn
See American ingenuity at work, where a Brooklyn loading dock, when not in use, morphs into a coffee hangout, West Coast–style taco stand and art gallery. Two fireplaces (one wood-burning, one gas) surrounded by pelt-covered chairs warm up the cavernous space. A long farmhouse table and coffee tables are set with candles. If only all loading docks were so inviting. Chef Forrest Cole, whose Choncho's Tacos are a favorite at Brooklyn Flea, re-creates the fish-filled variety here; additional fillings include beans and cheese, carne asada, chicken and carnitas. There are also tamales and burritos. Gorilla coffee is ready by 10am, but food doesn't kick in until 11am. Lunch ends at 3pm, and everything is removable if there's a freight delivery. At weekend brunch, you'll find chilaquiles and huevos rancheros.

Stuffed Artisan Cannolis
176 Stanton St., 212-995-2266, Lower East Side, Manhattan
A cannoli playland and coffee shop has come to the Lower East Side, painted in a sunny yellow and convenient to cutting-edge art galleries and boutiques. Co-owners Brielle Dahan and Anthony Fontana, whose family operates three restaurants in Little Italy, launched their business from a cannoli cart at the corner of Mulberry and Hester Streets. The handmade cannoli come in about 50 rotating flavors—peanut butter cup, French toast and root beer float, for example—and there are always 13 to 15 on hand to choose from. (Traditionalists can always opt for the original and chocolate flavors.) If you can't make it down to the shop in person, you can always have your order delivered—or try your hand at Stuffed's stuff-it-yourself cannoli kit.
Vintry Wine & Whiskey
57 Stone St., 212-480-9800, Financial District, Manhattan
Speyside, Lowlands, Highlands, Islay, Orkney, Skye—you name it, Vintry covers all the whiskey bases, together with spirits from Ireland, Canada, Japan, Kentucky and Tennessee. There are 250 in all. As for wines, the count is 81 by the taste, glass or bottle. It's a class operation run by Peter Poulakakos, whose family owns a number of restaurants in the Financial District, including Bayard's. The space is dark and snug, tucked on a hideaway cobblestone block. While drinks are placed on cloth cocktail napkins, there's nothing stuffy about the scene, with exuberant Wall Streeters nodding their heads to tunes from Creedence Clearwater Revival and The Knack. Small plates ($3 to $24) are blue-chip, from smoked salmon knishes topped with crème fraîche and American caviar to lobster-stuffed mushrooms to pillowy sheep's-milk-ricotta gnocchi with lamb ragù.


related venues/(3)

  1. 1
    Birdbath, Neighborhood Green Bakery
    145 Seventh Ave South
    Multiple Locations
    NY 10014
  2. 2
    67 First Ave
    Manhattan – East Village
    NY 10003
  3. 3
    Stuffed Artisan Cannolis
    176 Stanton St
    Manhattan – Lower East Side

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