Dinner at the movies

In time for the NYC Food Film Festival, we test-drive gastro-cinemas that are breaking free of the popcorn box.

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  • Photograph: Noah Devereaux

    Indie Food and Wine

    Pork-belly sandwich and green market chopped salad at Indie Food and Wine

  • Photograph: Noah Devereaux

    Indie Food and Wine

    Trio of sides at Indie Food and Wine

  • Photograph: Noah Devereaux

    Indie Food and Wine

    Salted-caramel popcorn and maple-ginger cookie at Indie Food and Wine

Photograph: Noah Devereaux

Indie Food and Wine

Pork-belly sandwich and green market chopped salad at Indie Food and Wine

Nitehawk Cinema | reRun Gastropub Theater | Indie Food and Wine | IndieScreen

Indie Food and Wine


144 W 65th St between Broadway and Amsterdam Ave (212-875-5456)

This summer, the Film Society of Lincoln Center opened its stunning new Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, featuring two gorgeous theaters and an ampitheater for lectures and panel discussions. To fit this culture-vulture complex, restaurateur Jason Denton ('ino, 'inoteca) has created a smart and casual street-level caf, as well as an upgraded concession stand with organic hot dogs and Parmesan-truffle popcorn. The high-minded programming is excellent: top-notch international films (both classics and first-run), regular panel discussions and plenty of cool festivals.

How it works: You can eat in the caf anytime (daily 8am--10pm), but only the concessions can go into the theater with you.

Food: In the caf, chef Rebecca Weitzman—an 'inoteca alum and proprietress of the Food & Drink Award--winning Thistle Hill Tavern—updates the standard sandwiches-and-salads formula with seasonal tweaks and her trademark Mediterranean-inflected spin. The milk-braised pork belly sandwich ($15) is a bit skimpy for the price, but it's a knockout otherwise, with pillowy ciabatta and a smear of house-made jalapeo mustard to cut through the unctuous meat. Round out a meal with solid sides (braised brussels sprouts with pancetta, Greek-style fingerling potato salad with kalamata olives) and a green market chopped salad ($11), packed with crunchy radishes, big hunks of ricotta salata and slivers of fresh beet. The fancy concession-stand sweets—like cakey maple-ginger cookies ($5) and addictive dark-chocolate-cloaked animal crackers ($6)—are quite good, but there are also old favorites like Junior Mints and Sweet Tarts for classicists.

Drinks: A beer-and-wine license for the caf is expected before the end of the year.

Bottom line: The Indie caf and the theaters are both excellent, but unfortunately, they can't be enjoyed together. Still, Indie is a welcome addition to Lincoln Center's offerings—meet for a quick bite before a flick, or chat semiotics afterward over coffee, a local-cheese plate or (hopefully soon) a glass of pinot noir.

Final grade:

B+

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