Harlem's Foodie Renaissance

by David Kaufman , 07/17/2013

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  • Corner Social
    321 Lenox Ave., 212-510-8552 
    Corner Social executive chef and partner Jonathan Romans is a veteran of luxe Manhattan kitchens ranging from Tribeca Grill to South Gate at the Jumeirah Essex House hotel. At Corner Social, Romans dishes up global takes on comfort classics, with an emphasis on seasonal and local ingredients. Indeed, nearby neighbors such as cupcake purveyor Tonnie's Minis and East Harlem's Hot Bread Kitchen are the ovens behind much of the restaurant's baked goods, while local urban gardens provide fresh fruits and vegetables. The restaurant's Lenox-facing front terrace offers some of Harlem's best people-watching—particularly while downing signature Romans dishes such as buttermilk fried oysters with pickled red onion and jalapeño mayonnaise or fried macaroni and cheese croquettes. Inside, pressed-tin ceilings, salvaged wood walls and floors crafted from reclaimed subway tiles give the Corner Social an only-in–New York vibe—with a decidedly uptown twist.

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