On a date

Sure, you could go to an upscale French place, but there's also lavish Lebanese, swanky Scandinavian and other underrepresented cuisines that are eager to please.



Ilili (lunch and dinner)
Lebanese food in New York City rarely goes beyond kibbe and tabouli takeout. Philippe Massoud deserves credit for opening the kind of ambitious eatery that would fit right in in the mother country. Ilili pulls off sexy, too, despite its location on a sleepy stretch of Fifth Avenue.

Abboccato (lunch and dinner)
Chef-partner Jim Botsacos pays tribute to his Italian mother. Each dish is here associated with a region of Italy, with some elegant updates to match the environs.

Kittichai (lunch)
The mood here is set by orange-hued lighting that bounces off fabric dividers and candles floating in a pool at the center of the room. Chef Ian Chalermkittichai (Four Seasons Bangkok) cooks haute Thai with a sweet accent.

Lure Fishbar (lunch and dinner)
The retro yacht interior at this sexy subterranean restaurant might make you and your date forget you’re docked in Soho. Dishes that have become rote at so many fish-focused eateries are executed here with the dazzling skill usually reserved for more ambitious menus.

Mai House (dinner)
It’s hard to go wrong with these gourmet adaptations of Asian staples. The main space is bright and casual, but the bar area, separated from the kitchen by a wall of ornately carved wood, is visually more impressive.


Anthos (lunch and dinner)

Aquavit Café (lunch and dinner)

• Alfama, Fine Portuguese Cuisine (lunch and dinner)

Amma (lunch and dinner)

• Cafe D' Alsace (lunch and dinner)

• Fleur de Sel (lunch)

I Trulli (lunch and dinner)

• JoJo (lunch and dinner)

Marseille (lunch and dinner)

Megu (lunch and dinner)

Mezzogiorno (lunch and dinner)

Molyvos (lunch and dinner)

North Square (lunch and dinner)

• Opia (lunch and dinner)

Periyali (lunch and dinner)

Petrossian (lunch and dinner)

Spice Market (lunch and dinner)

Thalassa (lunch and dinner)

• The Modern - Bar Room (dinner)