Find smoked brisket sandwiches at at the revamped Fatty ’Cue, reopening in its original Williamsburg location
RECOMMENDED: Full list of NYC restaurants opening this fall
The Beatrice Inn
Restaurateur and Vanity Fair editor-in-chief Graydon Carter, who transformed the listless Waverly Inn and Monkey Bar into exclusive, glitzy dinner dens, turns his attention to the shuttered, sceney West Village loft the Beatrice Inn. Remade as a tony chophouse with the help of partners Emil Varda and Brett Rasinski, the restaurant (with former Per Se sous chef Brian Nasworthy installed in the kitchen) will serve grill classics like dry-aged beef rib-eye steak, as well as more inventive dishes, like a spin on oysters Rockefeller made with mushrooms and herbs. Cream-colored molded walls, wide mirrors and slick leather banquettes complete the swank dining room. 285 W 12th St at 4th St (646-896-1804). Late August.
When the Prohibition-era saloon Bill’s Gay Nineties shuttered in March, New York City lost one of its most beloved barrooms. It remains to be seen whether John DeLucie will be able to capture the magic of the old place when he reopens it as a bar and grill in September. The chef—who made his bones reconditioning another classic restaurant, the Waverly Inn—plans to offer steaks and burgers at his pumiced version of the spot. 57 E 54th St between Madison and Park Aves (no phone yet). Mid-September.
The kitschy bachelorette-party favorite gets a new lease on life—literally—in midtown. The interior still evokes a tawdry Chinatown pleasure dome, but the food has been upgraded, with dishes like a steamed whole flounder cooked with ginger and lemongrass, and tamarind-glazed wonton dumplings. Those who enjoyed the larger-than-life waitstaff at the original East Village location can rest assured: Lucky Cheng’s cross-dressing servers are moving uptown as well. 240 W 52nd St between Broadway and Eighth Ave (no phone yet). Late September.
Mexican guru Ivan Garcia (Mesa Coyoacan) will transplant his former midtown taqueria, Zona Rosa, into a 1946 Airstream trailer in Williamsburg. Sip a margarita on the roof deck and dig into Mexico City street-food snacks, like Tacos de Canasta (tacos with homemade tortillas that are steamed in baskets). 571 Lorimer St at Metropolitan Ave, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (zonarosabrooklyn.com). Late September.
After extensive renovations, the Asian and Southern BBQ hot spot reopens in its original Williamsburg location, combining the rough-and-tumble feel of the flagship with the more sophisticated menu of the West Village offshoot. Seafood such as trout, shellfish and sardines roasted in an old hickory pit will join familiar favorites like pork ribs and brisket. 91 South 6th St between Bedford Ave and Berry St, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-599-3090, fattycue.com). Mid-October.
When it comes to bars, they don’t make them like this anymore: Opened in the 1920s, Chumley’s slaked the thirst of multiple generations of literati, counting everyone from John Dos Passos to William Faulkner among its patrons. But a collapsed wall in 2007 closed down the throwback bar, and rumors of a comeback have been percolating ever since. The latest avowal comes from manager Gina Ruiz, who says she plans to reopen this October in the restored space, complete with a wood-burning fireplace and soulful pub grub. 86 Bedford St between Barrow and Grove Sts (212-675-4449). Late October.
Caffe dei Fiori
A block away from Hunter College on Lexington Ave, Caffe dei Fiori hosts a seasonal menu that rest comfortably between traditional and modern. Offerings include elevated classics such as house-made tagliatelle with bolognese sauce ($26), a crunchy potato string–topped tuna tartare with lightly spiced avocado mousse ($22) and a salad of octopus, eggplant and basil ($23). While the scratch-made pasta offers the ideal fork tenderness, some of the protein-centered entrées fall short—lamb chops with wild mushrooms ($40) lack enough seasoning to complement the earthy flavor of the meat while the duck breast with pickled cherries ($44) screams out for greater attention to technical detail. On a recent visit, the skin wasn't properly crispy, the fat had not rendered and the meat wasn't fully cooked. However, the restaurant's reaction was immediate, as the maître d'hôtel quickly made amends for the failed dishes with two fresh plates of pasta covered with white truffles and parmesan. Dessert fares better. The cheesecake ice cream layered with fresh raspberry compote and buttery crumble ($12) tastes creamy and decadent and the panna cotta ($12) is lusciously smooth. The restaurant also offers an extensive wine list, with bottles ranging from $50 to $630. Though a few dishes fall short, the staff more than makes up for it with your choice of freshly baked bread, tableside fish deboning and an attitude that makes you feel right at home. All in all, Caffe dei Fiori is a charming and prom
Venue says: “Caffe Dei Fiori is a hidden gem, conveniently located on the Upper East Side.”