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An East Village Restaurant Ditches Its Tasting Menu for Drinking Snacks and Fried Chicken

Plus, New York’s ‘best Cuban restaurant’ is open for two more weeks — and more intel

A fried chicken sandwich on a plate at Nudibranch, a restaurant in the East Village of Manhattan.
Nudibranch will now serve popcorn, fried chicken sandwiches, and other snacks.
Yale Kim/Nudibranch

Nudibranch, a Spanish and Korean wine bar, opened in the East Village last summer. Its calling card, a three-course tasting menu that costs $75 per person, spoke to food critics in the city when it first opened — but it might have missed diners in the neighborhood. In response, the restaurant will leave its tasting menu behind for drinking snacks and an a la carte menu, which its chef sees as more approachable. “We want our guests to come in, drink, have fun, and eat well without needing to commit to a fixed meal,” Jeffrey Kim tells Eater. He now calls the restaurant a “neighborhood bistro.”

As part of the switch-up, Nudibranch will serve a fried chicken sandwich and a whole dry-aged duck with scallion pancakes. The new hours are 5:30 to 10 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday, and from 5:30 to 11:30 p.m., on Friday and Saturday.

New York’s ‘best Cuban restaurant’ delays closure

One of the city’s top Cuban restaurants is open for two more weeks. Rincón Criollo, a decades-old restaurant in Sunnyside, Queens, planned to close at the end of August; the new last day is September 21. The restaurant has been open on Junction Boulevard since 1976, originally under the brothers Jesus Rene and Rodobaldo Acosta. Eater’s critic called it “the best Cuban restaurant in town.”

A permanent home for a fried fish cart

Harlem Seafood Soul, a fried fish cart parked outside of the Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. State Office Building in Harlem, now has a stall at Dekalb Market in Downtown Brooklyn. The shop is open from 12 to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 12 to 10 p.m. on weekends. The business used to operate out of the Williamsburg Market before it closed. Eater’s critic called its fried chicken “wonderfully crisp” in a write-up of the food hall.