6 New Restaurants to Book in New York City

Chicken and dumplings at Peachy Keen, a 1970s-themed diner in Hell’s Kitchen that opened doors in June. | Credit: Alejandro Ramos

Become a regular at a freshly opened neighborhood joint, impress someone special with a brand-new dinner destination, or just treat yourself to a classic New York City happy hour—complete with a lovely sidewalk breeze—at these top spots of the moment.

Mezze on the River (Battery Park)

As its name suggests, this new Battery Park spot by Merchants Hospitality, which opened in June, offers shareable small plates alongside the Hudson River, but you may as well be on the Mediterranean Sea. Cozy up on the porch or under a cabana for dishes from the raw bar, such as jumbo shrimp cocktail, plus pita with hummus, baba ganoush, spicy feta, and tzatziki. Skewers, salads, and heartier dishes, like grilled octopus, seafood pasta, whole roasted branzino and a tomahawk steak are also served for dinner. To drink, there are signature cocktails inspired by classic seaside vacation spots, such as the refreshing Amalfi, a blend of vodka, elderflower liqueur, lemon, blackberries, and lemon bitters.

Peachy Keen (Hell’s Kitchen)

The candy colored interiors at Peachy Keen. | Credit: Alejandro Ramos

Venture back to the 1970s at this groovy new all-day eatery, an early June opening. The colorful space offers a retro vibe and eclectic menu inspired by classic American comfort food. There are crab and corn beignets, chicken and dumplings with herb gravy, truffle mac and cheese, plus soda fountain-style desserts such as root beer floats. Weekends bring disco brunch, when the soundtrack makes you want to dance atop a blue banquette, but dishes like super crispy chicken and waffles with spicy honey and chocolate banana bread French toast keep you at the table.

Omakaseed (NoMad)

Say hello to fish-free omakase: Omakaseed landed at the Plant Bar in May, making it one of the latest in New York’s herbivore-friendly sushi scene, offering a coursed, chef-curated tasting menu inspired by the flavor profiles of seasonal produce. The completely vegan sushi experience is limited to eight spots per seating, with up to five seatings per night. A fifteen-course menu starts at $65 and may include dishes such as pressed king mushroom nigiri, smoked koji cured carrot nigiri with white kelp, an oyster mushroom hand roll, and more.

Mermaid Mexicana (Greenwich Village)

Highlights on the Mermaid Mexicana menu include birria, pastor, and baja tacos. | Credit: ETSchindler Photo

The latest in the Mermaid family of restaurants, Mermaid Mexicana, which opened in May, is a go-to happy hour spot just steps away from its sister, The Mermaid Oyster Bar. Book a high top for agave-based cocktails, which include expertly crafted margaritas and riffs on classics with fresh fruit and smaller production spirits, like mezcal; there are also shareable appetizers such as flautas, elote, plenty of chips and guac, and some not-so-traditional Mexican dishes like an open face quesadilla. Covered sidewalk and indoor seating is available.

Cheeseboat – Hell’s Kitchen (Hell’s Kitchen)

A Georgian bistro popular with the cheese-pull loving crowd (aka everyone), Cheeseboat expanded from its original home in Williamsburg to Manhattan’s Hell’s Kitchen. Opened on August 4, Cheeseboat 2.0 will offer the same convivial ambiance, shareable dishes, and Georgian fare—still a rare find in the city. Small plates such as khinkali soup dumplings, stuffed with ground beef or a vegetarian mushroom medley and homemade hummus with toasted pita kick off a dairy-centric meal. The namesake cheese boats are vessels for a special melted mix of fresh mozzarella, feta, parmesan, and cheddar, adorned with a range of toppings like bacon, meatballs, braised leeks, butter marinated shrimp, and more.

Red Feather (West Village)

July brought this new Southeast Asian restaurant to the heart of the West Village. Red Feather combines chef Pia Gervacio’s Filipino heritage and upbringing with French techniques. White brick walls and matching chairs create a calming setting in the dining room, where fusion dishes shine as the colorful stars. Must-try items include the crispy pork in coconut milk and rose udon, tossed in a tomato garlic sauce inspired by spicy vodka sauce. Cultures merge on the dessert menu too, where the standout includes a matcha red bean tiramisu. Lunch and brunch are coming soon. For now, call the restaurant directly to book.

Tried them all? Check out other options here.

Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner is a writer based in Brooklyn, where she lives with her wife and rescue dog. You can follow her on Instagram @melissabethk and Twitter @melissabethk