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Whenever Team Torrisi opens a restaurant, we pay attention. (See: Dirty French, Carbone, Parm.) Santina, a seafood-heavy restaurant nestled under the High Line, opened early this year, and we’re still thinking about the lamb-and-mussels pasta.
820 Washington St. (at Gansevoort St.); 212-254-3000 or santinanyc.com
The New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx finally got its first proper, sit-down restaurant this year. It’s nestled within the property’s sprawling arboretum, and it’s under the direction of Stephen Starr Events & Catering (so you know it’s delicious). Just look at this fried, soft-boiled farm egg from the Hudson Valley.
2900 Southern Blvd., Bronx; 646-627-7711 or nybg.org
Wait, did someone say Stephen Starr? The entire town was buzzing about Ian Schrager’s new Edition Hotel (which took over that gorgeous Clocktower building on Madison Square Park) this year. And now you can see and be seen there--thanks to the glossy restaurant from Starr and Michelin-starred British chef Jason Atherton.
5 Madison Ave. (at E. 24th St.); 212-413-4300 or theclocktowernyc.com
For a chill, traditional Mexican dinner, head down to the East Village. Marc Meyer and Vicki Freeman (the duo behind Cookshop, Hundred Acres and Vic's) transformed this corner space into a gorgeous place to dine, complete with breeze-enabling retractable walls and an exposed tortilla-making station.
29 E. Second Ave. (at Second St.); 212-335-0114 or rosiesnyc.com
The newest venture from the guy behind the Meatball Shop is this Montauk-inspired seafood spot. Seamore’s menu constantly changes with the catch of the day, but the general idea revolves around fresh seafood at pretty affordable prices (including some of the best fish tacos in town).
390 Broome St. (at Mulberry St.); 212-730-6005 or seamores.com
This year, Aldea’s Michelin-starred chef George Mendes finally opened his much-anticipated Portuguese eatery just south of Herald Square. The seafood-centric menu boasts rustic small plates, like salt-cod croquettes, razor clams with cucumber and oven-baked octopus rice.
835 Ave. of the Americas (at 29th St.); 212-290-7600 or lupulonyc.com
Ever heard of Quality Meats, the super-fancy steakhouse near Central Park? Well, this is Quality Eats, a spin-off that focuses not on rib eyes and porterhouses, but on less expensive cuts, like bavette steak, short ribs and patty melts. Sides like tasty tabbouleh with kabocha squash and beets complement the meats.
19 Greenwich Ave. (at Charles St.); 212-337-9988 or qualityeats.com
Former Mas (Farmhouse) partner Hugh Crickmore has teamed up with former Blanca chef de cuisine Alex Leonard on a new joint that?s much classier than the name suggests. Think lamb tartare with mint and shrimp salt, guinea hen with bread sauce and carrots and a $54 chicken yakitori dish with scallions and smoked cabbage that?s designed to share.
178 Stanton St. (at Attorney St.); 212-257-0509 or lowlifenyc.com
What do you get when an interior designer daughter and her chef mother buy an old garage in Bushwick? They transform it into the hottest French restaurant in town, hidden behind an unassuming exterior covered in graffiti.
159 B. Central Ave. (at Suydam St.), Brooklyn; 347-925-1700 or legaragebrooklyn.com
It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it. (And whether or not we gained 25 pounds in the process is beside the point).
Here are the fruits of our labor: New York City’s very best restaurants of 2015. If you need us, we’ll be at Seamore’s.
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