Recently Opened Restaurants
by Julie Besonen, 01/08/2014
Photo: Daniel Krieger
13 First Ave., 646-924-8153, East Village, Manhattan
A nostalgic enterprise dedicated to 1970s food and drinks sounds iffy, but Golden Cadillac gets it right. This East Village corner spot, which long housed Boca Chica, is thriving again with a clientele of fashionable types mostly born around 1990. For this crowd, Watergate, Jimmy Carter's presidency and the imposition of a 55-miles-per-hour speed limit would have been on their history tests, not part of their vernacular. Owner Greg Boehm is an entrepreneur and scholar—he has been involved with book publishing and is known as a connoisseur of mixology paraphernalia—and here, he brings his erudition to bear on the cocktails, which explains the very palatable grasshoppers and cosmopolitans (recent stars of the revolving drinks menu). The menu is derived from vintage Gourmet magazine recipes and includes mini Monte Cristo sandwiches as well as cheese fondue with potato knishes and big croutons for dipping. There are no disco balls, the only nod to that aspect of '70s culture being poutine disco fries; indeed, the dark, clubby venue is more endearing than skeptics might believe.