NYC’s 15 Most Anticipated Openings of Winter 2019

A chocolate tart from Bourke Street Bakery

An exciting slew of ambitious, yet still often accessible, restaurants are on the way

New year, new restaurants. Thankfully, despite increased cost of doing business with rising minimum wage, New York’s dining scene is already shaping up to be one filled with ambitious — and often accessible — restaurants, ranging from an experimental brothless ramen shop to a revival of the legendary Keith McNally restaurant Pastis.

To be sure, increased costs is having its impact. Some of the city’s most exciting restaurateurs are focusing their efforts on smaller spaces. The Franks of Italian favorite Frankies 457 are now working with one of Long Island’s most legendary pizzamakers, Umberto Corteo, but it will be for a slice shop. All-day dining — a format that, for some, is a way to help maximize sales — continues to flourish, like at Gertie, Pilar Cuban Bakery, and Bourke Street Bakery.

Money, after all, still runs things. The biggest change to the dining scene will be the debut of all the restaurants at Hudson Yards, the behemoth Manhattan far west side development from Related Companies that has cost $20 billion. Most of the chefs in it needed to have at least $2 million in upfront capital. It arguably isn’t great for the future of NYC dining.

But some promising gems are in the mix, like a big project from José Andrés and avant gardists Albert and Ferran Adrià. And for those who don’t want to visit it, there will be plenty of other new restaurants to try this winter. Ahead, see the most anticipated restaurant openings of NYC for the season, listed by planned opening date.

Bourke Street Bakery

Key players: Paul Allam and Jessica Grynberg
Target open: January

New York doesn’t lack bakeries, it doesn’t lack casual all-day cafes, and it doesn’t lack Australian imports. And yet, the upcoming debut of Bourke Street Bakery feels thrilling. The Australian bakery is an institution, with locations across Sydney that all remain popular for pastries, bread, and classic Aussie goodies like sausage rolls. Though it’s a mini-chain, what’s wildly promising about the New York location is that co-founder and baker Paul Allam, who opened it with David McGuinness in 2004, has moved to the States himself to run it. Along with his wife Jessica Grynberg, Allam will be baking the bread fresh all day. Sandwiches, salads, sausage rolls, and other savory fare will accompany pastries, bread, and coffee at the 50-seat, counter-service spot. As such, this outpost will end up with more personal touches. Allam, who was previously a savory chef, will be returning to seasonal cooking here, something he can’t do as frequently in Sydney because of the scale. 115 East 28th St., between Fifth and Madison avenues, Nomad

Niche

Key players: Shigetoshi Nakamura
Target open: January

Since tiny Nakamura opened in 2016, it’s been one of the city’s top destinations for ramen, from the mind of its chef Shigetoshi Nakamura. Now, he’s expanding with an equally small ramen shop — though this time, he’s getting more experimental. At Niche, he’s focusing entirely on mazemen, the brothless ramen that’s yet to become ubiquitous in the city. Bowls will nod to both Japanese traditions and LES food history, like with an homage to Russ & Daughters topped with fish roes and smoked salmon. The slim menu will also feature options like a grilled ribeye ramen and a take on a carbonora with uni and bacon. 172 Delancey St., between Clinton and Attorney streets, Lower East Side

Niche mazemen
Jesse Stein/Nakamura

Pilar Cuban Bakery

Key players: Ricardo Barreras
Target open: January

After nearly 10 years in Bed-Stuy, Miami native Ricardo Barreras is expanding his popular restaurant Pilar Cuban Eatery with a bakery next door, where guava and cheese pastries and Cuban sandwiches will reign supreme. Pilar Cuban Eatery will continue focusing on stand-out Cuban fare, while the bakery will mirror the ones that dot Miami’s Little Havana, with pastries ranging from croquettes and empanadas to Cuban tamales. Cuban coffee and fruit smoothies will also be on deck. Seating will be limited, and grab-and-go will be a priority. 397 Greene Ave., between Bedford and Franklin avenues, Bed-Stuy

Bar Pisellino

Key players: Rita Sodi and Jody Williams
Target open: January

Few chefs and restaurateurs in the West Village know how to nail both rustic Italian cooking and charming neighborhood vibes the way that Rita Sodi and Jody Williams can. It’s why the newest project from the team behind favorites like Via Carota, called Bar Pisellino, is so promising. The new, 30-seat corner restaurant will be open from early morning to late- night — serving paninis, bomboloni, cocktails, and other casual Italian dishes. If it’s anything like their other restaurants, Bar Pisellino will somehow become a food world destination as well as an unpretentious place for locals. 100 Seventh Avenue South, at Grove Street, West Village

Llama San

Key players: Erik Ramirez, Juan Correa, and Lynnette Marrero
Target open: January

West Village will soon be home to Llama San, the latest project from chef Erik Ramirez of acclaimed Williamsburg Peruvian restaurant Llama Inn and his business partner Juan Correa. The chef, trained at fine dining restaurants like Eleven Madison Park, will here turn to Nikkei cuisine, a style created by Japanese immigrants in Peru. Think of it as a Peruvian izakaya, with dishes like a quinoa-infused tofu with quinoa furikake, wild sturgeon caviar, and chancaca, a sugarcane syrup. Lynette Marrero will similarly be creating drinks that pull from Japan and Peru. 359 Sixth Ave. near Washington Place, West Village

The Au Cheval burger
Nick Fochtman
The Au Cheval burger

Au Cheval

Key players: Brendan Sodikoff
Target open: February

Burger fiends across the country know the Au Cheval burger, which falls into the classic American varietal of two griddled four-ounce patties with American cheese, dijonnaise, and pickles on a toasted bun. It sounds simple, but the Chicago restaurant still racks up multi-hour-long lines for what is modernized diner fare. Owner Brendan Sodikoff — who already has a Manhattan hit on his hands at 4 Charles Prime Rib — is set to open the second-ever location in Tribeca. There will be 75 seats for that burger and other neo-diner fare, such as potato hash with duck heart gravy, matzah ball soup, and chilaquiles at the Chicago location. 79 Walker St., at Cortlandt Alley, Tribeca

Gertie

Key players: Nate Adler, Will Edwards, Flip Biddelman, and Savannah Turley
Target open: February

Nate Adler is bringing a new neighborhood restaurant to Brooklyn, following the success of his tapas and Basque-inspired East Village restaurant Huertas. For Gertie, he has teamed up with partners chef Will Edwards and general manager Flip Biddelman to helm a 70-seat all-day restaurant dedicated to rotisserie cooking, including spit-roasted meats, fish and vegetables. Billed as a luncheonette and liquor bar, there will also be pastries and sandwiches with a bread program from Savannah Turley who is a chef at the Brooklyn-based catering business Harvest and Revel. For dessert, there will be Italian ices. Gertie gave a sneak peek at what’s to come via a pop-up in the Crown Heights beer hall Berg’n this summer. 58 Marcy Ave., near Grand Street, Williamsburg

Hanoi Noodle Soup

Key players: Sara Leveen, Ben Lowell, Daniel Le, Albert Nguyen
Target open: February

East Village Vietnamese breakout Hanoi House no longer has its opening chef, but owners Sara Leveen and Ben Lowell — both Starr Restaurants alum — are forging ahead with expansion anyway, with a noodle shop planned near their original outpost. To create the menu, they’ve brought along chefs Daniel Le and Albert Nguyen, who will be splitting their time between the two restaurants. Hanoi Noodle Soup will be more casual than its older sister. Hoi An chicken over rice, a pork terrine banh mi, and coffee will be available, though the star will of course be soup. Fragrant beef-based pho, as well as chicken and vegan pho, will be on the menu. And unlike Hanoi House, this outpost will be open during the day and offer takeout and delivery. 115 St. Marks Pl., near Avenue A, East Village

Hanoi House pho bac
Nick Solares/Eater
Hanoi House’s pho bac

Niche Niche

Key players: Ariel Arce
Target open: Mid- to late-February

Wine whiz Ariel Arce has created her own little world on MacDougal Street, with her pretty Champagne bar Air’s Champagne Parlor and hip downstairs Japanese bar and restaurant Tokyo Record Bar. Now just a few doors down, Arce is adding another restaurant-bar combo that favors wine. Named Niche Niche, Arce calls it a dinner party — it’s designed like an open home kitchen and dining room, and each night brings a new menu and wine pairing. Arce will call on her deep contacts in the wine industry to spotlight four wines of their choice, and Tokyo Record Bar chef Zach Fabian will make a menu to match. One night could bring wines from a certain Italian region, while another could focus on a specific varietal from across the world. The whole thing is meant to be a communal experience, akin to a dinner party in someone’s home. A live music venue downstairs with Asian-leaning food and sake cocktails will follow in March. 43 MacDougal St., at King Street, Soho

Mercado Little Spain

Key players: José Andrés, Ferran Adrià, Albert Adrià
Target open: March

The controversial Hudson Yards development on Manhattan’s far west side means lots of new restaurants from big name chefs, and though some of the options feel like a mixed bag, Mercado Little Spain — a 35,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor food hall — is one that sounds actually thrilling. That’s in part because it’s coming from three of the most exciting Spanish food chefs in the world: José Andrés from D.C. and brothers Ferran and Albert Adrià, the two modernist chefs behind now-shuttered but revolutionary El Bulli. It’s being billed as the Spanish version of Eataly, and none of them have previously had NYC restaurants. In practice, that means three-full service restaurants plus smaller bars, with coca (a kind of Spanish pizza), tortilla, tapas, jamon, churros, fried seafood, sandwiches, salads, and Spanish pastries — plus retail. 10 Hudson Yards, at the corner of West 30th Street and 10th Avenue, Hudson Yards

Eunjo “Jo” Park
Andrew Bezek/Momofuku
Eunjo “Jo” Park

New Momofuku Restaurant in Hudson Yards

Key players: David Chang, Eunjo “Jo” Park
Target open: March

There may not be a ton to get excited about restaurant-wise in the upcoming Hudson Yards, but superstar chef David Chang’s new restaurant is one reason. He’s enlisted former Ko and Per Se cook Eunjo “Jo” Park as executive chef, who says “the backbone” of the restaurant will be Korean, though it won’t be traditional. Though there’s no info yet on the menu (or a name), Park says it will most closely resemble Majordomo in the Momofuku empire, the splashy Los Angeles restaurant that opened to mostly rave reviews in 2018. The 5,000-square-foot space will have a bar with Korean spirits, dining room, and sushi counter with seating looking into an open kitchen. Though there have been an influx of modern, French-influenced Korean restaurants in NYC as of late — Atomix, Oiji, Soogil — with Chang involved, people are sure to still clamor. Shops & Restaurants at Hudson Yards

Red Hook Tavern and Hometown Deli

Key player: Billy Durney
Target open: March

New York’s top barbecue pitmaster Billy Durney is finally closer to his follow-up restaurants. After much delay, the New York native and man behind Hometown Bar-B-Que says both his fried chicken restaurant, now called Red Hook Tavern, and his take on a classic NYC deli, Hometown Deli, will be opening by March. Fried chicken will center the menu at the tavern, while Southern sides, a simple Corner Bistro-esque burger, and natural wines will fill it out. It’s modeled after an old-school bar, but with food from a meat master. Meanwhile in Industry City, Durney’s pulling from Jewish delis. His version of pastrami, corned beef, and egg salad will be available at the counter-service spot. Red Hook Tavern, 329 Van Brunt St., at Sullivan Street, Red Hook; Hometown Deli, 220 36th St., between Second and Third avenues, Industry City, Sunset Park

Frankies Umberto

Key players: Frank Castronovo, Frank Falcinelli, Umberto Corteo
Target open: Late March/April

Neighborhood restaurateurs Frank Castronovo and Frank Falcinelli — collectively known as the Franks — are teaming up with Long Island grandma and Sicilian-style pizza legend Umberto Corteo for a new slice shop in Cobble Hill. The Franks, behind Italian staple Frankies 457 Spuntino, are already a known entity in NYC, and though Corteo is less known within the five boroughs, his pies have a cult following on Long Island. He’s credited with creating the first-ever grandma pie and will even be on site making pies, with different ingredients than his Long Island shops. 210 Court St., between Warren and Congress Streets, Cobble Hill

Pastis

Key players: Keith McNally, Stephen Starr
Target open: Late March

This could be the biggest comeback in NYC dining in years. For those who don’t remember, Pastis was Keith McNally’s legendary Meatpacking District French restaurant that transformed the area into a stylish drinking and dining neighborhood. It was a classic McNally restaurant, and one that drew a crowd. But it closed in 2014, and the iconic restaurateur has been trying to reopen it since. Now, nearly five years later, it will finally happen — though this time, with a partner. Fellow James Beard Award-winning restaurateur Stephen Starr, the man behind Le Coucou and Upland, will be running things day-to-day here. Still, McNally’s involved, and the goal is to keep those romantic old Pastis vibes alive. 52 Gansevoort St., between Washington Street and Ninth Avenue, Meatpacking District

Source: NYC eater
NYC’s 15 Most Anticipated Openings of Winter 2019