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Northern European fare is underexposed in NYC, but this trailblazing bistro and bar makes a strong case for its appeal. The minimalist interior sets the scene for cutting-edge cocktails from barkeep Katie Stipe, who uses unusual ingredients (beer, jenever) in tipples like the beautifully balanced Turf War (aquavit, Lillet, maraschino juice, orange bitters, absinthe). Chef Phillip Kirschen-Clark (wd~50) offers great small bites to match—bright seasonal pickles, crisp bitterballen (meaty croquettes) and crunchy sweetbread nuggets served with a lush Concord grape dipping sauce. Even without a pastry chef, the sweet treats (like warm caramel wafers) deliver an inspired finale.