Forget about the numerous holiday window displays at department stores across town. Disregard the festive Nostalgia Trains running on the subway through Christmas Eve. Bite your thumb at the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. For all these attractions are trite tomfoolery compared to Rolf’s, the crown jewel of the holiday season in New York.
Every year, the German restaurant in Gramercy takes Christmas to the extreme with thousands of lights, ornaments, garlands and other yuletide decor strewn throughout its interior. The decorations take more than a month to set up and are typically left in place until summertime. The final product looks like Santa Claus’s opium dream, and it’s absolutely marvelous. New Yorkers of all ilks flock to the spot during the holiday season to score a taste of schnitzel, glühwein, less-than-enthusiastic service and a vibrant Instagram post.
Scoring a table isn’t easy, though. Those who want to take in the glory festive locale can make a reservation over the phone or show up before noon to claim a spot in line. While a table at isn’t easy to score during the holiday season, the decorations will be up through the end of May. So if you’re looking to channel your Christmas spirit long after the holiday has passed, Rolf’s is your best bet.