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A colorful shellfish platter sits on a lacquered wooden table.
Le Rock at Rockefeller Center.
Le Rock

The 15 Hottest New Restaurants in Manhattan, September 2022

A new-school Cantonese restaurant and a buzzy Rockefeller Center spot from the Frenchette team join the list this month

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Le Rock at Rockefeller Center.
| Le Rock

Eater editors get asked one question more than any other: Where should I eat right now? Here, we’ve put together a map of the latest Manhattan debuts drawing NYC’s dining obsessives.

New to the list in September: Le Rock, the Frenchette team’s buzzy new spot at Rockefeller Center, Potluck Club, a downtown, new-school Cantonese restaurant, and HAGS, a queer-led restaurant shaking up the fine dining space.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

For more New York dining recommendations, check out the new hotspots in Brooklyn and Queens.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Charles Pan-Fried Chicken

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In one of the most highly anticipated debuts of the year, Charles Gabriel’s legendary fried chicken is back. The decades-old Harlem icon — which also opened a location on the Upper West Side in February — is known for its lesser-seen approach to frying chicken, crisping the bird in a giant skillet instead of vats of bubbling oil. The impressive result has gained the restaurant legions of followers. Customers line up for Charles’ crunchy chicken, creamy mac and cheese, and lima beans that Eater critic Robert Sietsema says will convert even the staunchest lima bean doubter. Barbecued ribs, pulled pork, and smothered chicken are also on the menu.

Chef Charles Gabriel and COO, Quie Slobert at the newly opened Charles Pan-Fried Chicken in Harlem.
The team kicked off their Harlem opening with a block party this spring.
Melanie Landsman/Eater NY

Le Rock

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Le Rock is the latest in a series of high-profile restaurant openings at Rockefeller Center — and possibly the best of the bunch so far. Similar to this team’s sibling restaurant Frenchette in Tribeca, the focus is on French bistro fare that’s been dialed up in price and quality. Half of the menu is made up of seasonal seafood while the other half is anchored in modern classics like escargot served out of ceramic cups and leeks vinaigrette that come wrapped in their leaves.

Five escargot served out of stone cups are arranged around a lemon.
Escargot comes served out of ceramic cups.
Luke Fortney/Eater NY

Cafe China

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Cafe China, an acclaimed Sichuan restaurant that held a Michelin star for seven years, temporarily shuttered for five months in 2021. It has now has been reborn in a three-story brick building in Midtown. The chic restaurant, run by Xian Zhang and Yiming Wang, marries old menu favorites like cumin lamb and tea-smoked duck with new-guard entries like a whole steamed fish with cayenne and tabasco peppers, plus dim sum and other regional Chinese dishes.

An assortment of dishes are strewn out on a table at Cafe China.
Cafe China is serving Sichuan classics alongside Cantonese dim sum.
Cafe China

El Quijote

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El Quijote’s return has been four years in the making, ever since the Hotel Chelsea shut down the storied spot for renovations in 2018. The Spanish restaurant has been polished and revamped by the hip team behind Sunday in Brooklyn and partner Charles Seich. Seafood is the highlight here, from head-on prawns cooked a la plancha and doused in garlic and olive oil, to the restaurant’s impressive paella, studded with squid, cockles, mussels, and blue prawns.

An overhead shot of a round dish of paella filled with rice and seafood.
Paella from El Quijote.
Eric Medsker/El Quijote

The initial step in the next chapter at 85 10th Avenue — the former home of lauded-yet-troubled Italian destination Del Posto — was an upscale pizza parlor that bills itself as the more relaxed counterpart to next-door fine-dining newcomer Al Coro. Executive chef Melissa Rodriguez is running the show at Mel’s, a weeknight hangout with wood-fired pizza, grilled steaks, and some outstanding sundaes.

A tricolore cookie sundae and a mint brownie sundae sit side by side in ornamental glasses
The glorious sundaes at Mel’s.
Christian Rodriguez/Eater NY

Oiji Mi

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Add Oiji Mi to the running list of restaurants offering tasting menus for around $100. The one served here — priced at $135 for five courses — highlights modern Korean inventions like foie gras with bokbunja (a Korean fruit wine) and deconstructed bo ssam with oysters and pork belly. Despite the early buzz, there’s plenty of reservations at this 80-seat Flatiron restaurant, which comes from the team that formerly ran acclaimed modern Korean restaurant Oiji, in the East Village.

Two pieces of foie gras, blanketed in a brown sauce and adorned with flowers.
Oiji Mi’s foie gras.
Christian Harder/Oiji Mi

This sleek pastry shop was slammed from the moment that it opened, and for good reason: Chef Eunji Lee has a reputation for playful yet highly technical desserts that, until now, have only been found on high-end restaurant pastry menus like Michelin-starred Korean spot Jungsik. At Lysée, she’s stepping out on her own with a lineup of whimsical desserts that reference her Korean background, French training, and fascination with American food. Go early, and prepare to wait a bit for the goods.

A white bowl holds a round dessert that looks like corn on the cob. In the background a box that says Lysee stands.
Lysée’s corn dessert.
Dan Ahn/Lysée

Possibly one of the most talked-about openings of the year, HAGS — a reference to both witches and the quintessential high-school yearbook inscription — is a queer-led fine dining restaurant that is thinking differently about equity for both staffers and diners participating in the experience of dining out. Chef and co-owner Telly Justice leads a $155, four-course tasting menu (or $145 for the vegan version) that includes plenty of joyful moments, and on Sundays, that menu is set aside in favor of a rotating lineup of pay-what-you-wish meals that are first come, first served.

A red tomato is split in half with a goopy green sauce with shredded green herbs on top.
A summery tomato course at HAGS.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

Rowdy Rooster

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The hotshots behind one of America’s best new restaurants of 2021 are not slowing down. In their latest debut, restaurateur Roni Mazumdar and chef Chintan Pandya are frying up crunchy, spicy fried chicken commonly seen in Indian street stalls and transplanting it to the East Village. The tiny shop is churning out fried chicken at three different spice levels, plus chicken sandwiches with scallion yogurt and mint chutney, and sides including crispy eggplant or potato pakoras and masala corn. For vegetarians, the snack-sized vado pao — a spiced potato patty with mint and tamarind chutney on a buttered pao roll — is an equally spicy hit.

A takeout container filled with pieces of fried chicken against a black background.
Fried chicken from Rowdy Rooster.
Paul McDonough/Rowdy Rooster

Nudibranch

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A trio of Momofuku alums — Jeff Kim, Matthew Lee, and Victor Xia — started Nudibranch as a pop-up, a place where they could cook dishes that drew upon their collective experiences working at the David Chang restaurant group and other restaurants across town. They’ve now found a permanent home for their cooking in the East Village, where the $75 prix fixe menu leans heavily on traditional Asian ingredients in dishes like soba showered with shavings of bottarga; cauliflower paired with a Vietnamese dipping sauce and Chinese sausage; and fried frog legs topped with a medley of herbs like lemongrass and galangal.

A white bowl with a mushroom dish in it with an egg yolk
Shaoxing mushrooms at Nudibranch.
Nudibranch

Little Myanmar

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Burmese food has always been a rare find in NYC, but Little Myanmar is one of a handful of restaurants looking to put more of a spotlight on the cuisine across the city. The family behind the operation famously started out with Yun Cafe, a tiny stall inside a subway station in Jackson Heights (which remains open). But in the East Village, chef Thidar Kyaw is able to stretch out with more space (and with more equipment) and that’s clear in the menu: The restaurant boasts an extensive range of punchy salads, grilled skewers, and both subtle and spicy curries. Don’t miss the goat curry, which Eater critic Robert Sietsema praised as one of the best versions of the dish in the city.

A metal wok of dark red meat curry on the bottom right, with a plate of rice and cup of soup on the upper left.
Goat curry at Little Myanmar.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Potluck Club

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Offering a playful take on Chinese American food, Potluck Club recently opened in a remote corner of Chinatown. The premises looks like a movie theater, with a marquee that reads, “Here For A Good Time Not A Long Time.” The relatively brief menu embroiders on dishes that might have been found in an old-fashioned Cantonese banquet hall, including salt-and-pepper chicken served anomalously with biscuits, and short ribs braised with kabocha squash. Partners include Cory Ng, Kimberly Ho, Justin Siu, Tommy Leong, Ricky Nguyen, and chef Zhan Chen.

Fried chicken strewn with pickled jalapenos with a pair of biscuits in the background.
Salt-and-pepper chicken is served with biscuits.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Corner Bar

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Located in the recently opened Nine Orchard Hotel, Corner Bar is the new restaurant from Ignacio Mattos. Ignore the divey name — stools march along a marble bar and booths look out upon Allen Street, for a little Lower East Side flavor. Hot as it may be outside, the food is cool, fresh, and delicate, from the pristine oyster service to the heirloom tomato salad, which is irresistible. The menu is simple, running to entrees you don’t have to think about too much — spaghetti pomodoro, mussels, and roast chicken. This is hotel food at its best, unfussy yet elegant, just the thing for a weary traveler.

An outdoor table set with steak, fries, a burger, salad, and a martini.
An outdoor spread at Corner Bar.
Daniel Kreiger/Corner Bar

Le Dive

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The name’s kind of a joke, right? But Jon Neidich’s new establishment, a compact corner spot radiating lively tables outdoors, is diehard French: from the winelist, full of Gallic vintages (no Finger Lakes here) to menu classics like an entire artichoke steamed and drizzled with olive oil and sea salt, a steak tartare with capers and cornichons, and a tuna Nicoise with spuds and haricots vert in an acidic shallot vinaigrette. The French fries are perfect, shoestrings to be poked in a dense aioli, which customers demolish as their heads swivel to check out the other patrons as they arrive.

A full artichoke, plate of cold cuts, and cone of French fries with a glass of white wine on the side.
A selection of French dishes at Le Dive.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Le Gratin

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Daniel Boulud’s restaurant in the Beekman Hotel is an ode to Lyon that tends to details without seeming overly fussy. Look for a menu of bistro classics like moules frites or steak tartare as well as salads like a lump crab number on Boston lettuce with grapefruit, avocado, and French cocktail sauce. Plan on ordering a regional specialty like the quenelle, a quivering pike dumpling with gruyere-mushroom bechamel. The desserts are excellent, too, from the peach melba to the roasted cherries cream puff. The buzzy space adheres to prior life as Keith McNally’s Augustine with classic globe lighting, cushy banquettes, antiqued mirrors, and art nouveau details.

A blue oval dish filled with one long quenelle with a burnt top, sitting in a creamy white sauce.
Le Gratin’s quenelle.
Bill Milne/Le Gratin

Charles Pan-Fried Chicken

Chef Charles Gabriel and COO, Quie Slobert at the newly opened Charles Pan-Fried Chicken in Harlem.
The team kicked off their Harlem opening with a block party this spring.
Melanie Landsman/Eater NY

In one of the most highly anticipated debuts of the year, Charles Gabriel’s legendary fried chicken is back. The decades-old Harlem icon — which also opened a location on the Upper West Side in February — is known for its lesser-seen approach to frying chicken, crisping the bird in a giant skillet instead of vats of bubbling oil. The impressive result has gained the restaurant legions of followers. Customers line up for Charles’ crunchy chicken, creamy mac and cheese, and lima beans that Eater critic Robert Sietsema says will convert even the staunchest lima bean doubter. Barbecued ribs, pulled pork, and smothered chicken are also on the menu.

Chef Charles Gabriel and COO, Quie Slobert at the newly opened Charles Pan-Fried Chicken in Harlem.
The team kicked off their Harlem opening with a block party this spring.
Melanie Landsman/Eater NY

Le Rock

Five escargot served out of stone cups are arranged around a lemon.
Escargot comes served out of ceramic cups.
Luke Fortney/Eater NY

Le Rock is the latest in a series of high-profile restaurant openings at Rockefeller Center — and possibly the best of the bunch so far. Similar to this team’s sibling restaurant Frenchette in Tribeca, the focus is on French bistro fare that’s been dialed up in price and quality. Half of the menu is made up of seasonal seafood while the other half is anchored in modern classics like escargot served out of ceramic cups and leeks vinaigrette that come wrapped in their leaves.

Five escargot served out of stone cups are arranged around a lemon.
Escargot comes served out of ceramic cups.
Luke Fortney/Eater NY

Cafe China

An assortment of dishes are strewn out on a table at Cafe China.
Cafe China is serving Sichuan classics alongside Cantonese dim sum.
Cafe China

Cafe China, an acclaimed Sichuan restaurant that held a Michelin star for seven years, temporarily shuttered for five months in 2021. It has now has been reborn in a three-story brick building in Midtown. The chic restaurant, run by Xian Zhang and Yiming Wang, marries old menu favorites like cumin lamb and tea-smoked duck with new-guard entries like a whole steamed fish with cayenne and tabasco peppers, plus dim sum and other regional Chinese dishes.

An assortment of dishes are strewn out on a table at Cafe China.
Cafe China is serving Sichuan classics alongside Cantonese dim sum.
Cafe China

El Quijote

An overhead shot of a round dish of paella filled with rice and seafood.
Paella from El Quijote.
Eric Medsker/El Quijote

El Quijote’s return has been four years in the making, ever since the Hotel Chelsea shut down the storied spot for renovations in 2018. The Spanish restaurant has been polished and revamped by the hip team behind Sunday in Brooklyn and partner Charles Seich. Seafood is the highlight here, from head-on prawns cooked a la plancha and doused in garlic and olive oil, to the restaurant’s impressive paella, studded with squid, cockles, mussels, and blue prawns.

An overhead shot of a round dish of paella filled with rice and seafood.
Paella from El Quijote.
Eric Medsker/El Quijote

Mel's

A tricolore cookie sundae and a mint brownie sundae sit side by side in ornamental glasses
The glorious sundaes at Mel’s.
Christian Rodriguez/Eater NY

The initial step in the next chapter at 85 10th Avenue — the former home of lauded-yet-troubled Italian destination Del Posto — was an upscale pizza parlor that bills itself as the more relaxed counterpart to next-door fine-dining newcomer Al Coro. Executive chef Melissa Rodriguez is running the show at Mel’s, a weeknight hangout with wood-fired pizza, grilled steaks, and some outstanding sundaes.

A tricolore cookie sundae and a mint brownie sundae sit side by side in ornamental glasses
The glorious sundaes at Mel’s.
Christian Rodriguez/Eater NY

Oiji Mi

Two pieces of foie gras, blanketed in a brown sauce and adorned with flowers.
Oiji Mi’s foie gras.
Christian Harder/Oiji Mi

Add Oiji Mi to the running list of restaurants offering tasting menus for around $100. The one served here — priced at $135 for five courses — highlights modern Korean inventions like foie gras with bokbunja (a Korean fruit wine) and deconstructed bo ssam with oysters and pork belly. Despite the early buzz, there’s plenty of reservations at this 80-seat Flatiron restaurant, which comes from the team that formerly ran acclaimed modern Korean restaurant Oiji, in the East Village.

Two pieces of foie gras, blanketed in a brown sauce and adorned with flowers.
Oiji Mi’s foie gras.
Christian Harder/Oiji Mi

Lysée

A white bowl holds a round dessert that looks like corn on the cob. In the background a box that says Lysee stands.
Lysée’s corn dessert.
Dan Ahn/Lysée

This sleek pastry shop was slammed from the moment that it opened, and for good reason: Chef Eunji Lee has a reputation for playful yet highly technical desserts that, until now, have only been found on high-end restaurant pastry menus like Michelin-starred Korean spot Jungsik. At Lysée, she’s stepping out on her own with a lineup of whimsical desserts that reference her Korean background, French training, and fascination with American food. Go early, and prepare to wait a bit for the goods.

A white bowl holds a round dessert that looks like corn on the cob. In the background a box that says Lysee stands.
Lysée’s corn dessert.
Dan Ahn/Lysée

HAGS

A red tomato is split in half with a goopy green sauce with shredded green herbs on top.
A summery tomato course at HAGS.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

Possibly one of the most talked-about openings of the year, HAGS — a reference to both witches and the quintessential high-school yearbook inscription — is a queer-led fine dining restaurant that is thinking differently about equity for both staffers and diners participating in the experience of dining out. Chef and co-owner Telly Justice leads a $155, four-course tasting menu (or $145 for the vegan version) that includes plenty of joyful moments, and on Sundays, that menu is set aside in favor of a rotating lineup of pay-what-you-wish meals that are first come, first served.

A red tomato is split in half with a goopy green sauce with shredded green herbs on top.
A summery tomato course at HAGS.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

Rowdy Rooster

A takeout container filled with pieces of fried chicken against a black background.
Fried chicken from Rowdy Rooster.
Paul McDonough/Rowdy Rooster

The hotshots behind one of America’s best new restaurants of 2021 are not slowing down. In their latest debut, restaurateur Roni Mazumdar and chef Chintan Pandya are frying up crunchy, spicy fried chicken commonly seen in Indian street stalls and transplanting it to the East Village. The tiny shop is churning out fried chicken at three different spice levels, plus chicken sandwiches with scallion yogurt and mint chutney, and sides including crispy eggplant or potato pakoras and masala corn. For vegetarians, the snack-sized vado pao — a spiced potato patty with mint and tamarind chutney on a buttered pao roll — is an equally spicy hit.

A takeout container filled with pieces of fried chicken against a black background.
Fried chicken from Rowdy Rooster.
Paul McDonough/Rowdy Rooster

Nudibranch

A white bowl with a mushroom dish in it with an egg yolk
Shaoxing mushrooms at Nudibranch.
Nudibranch

A trio of Momofuku alums — Jeff Kim, Matthew Lee, and Victor Xia — started Nudibranch as a pop-up, a place where they could cook dishes that drew upon their collective experiences working at the David Chang restaurant group and other restaurants across town. They’ve now found a permanent home for their cooking in the East Village, where the $75 prix fixe menu leans heavily on traditional Asian ingredients in dishes like soba showered with shavings of bottarga; cauliflower paired with a Vietnamese dipping sauce and Chinese sausage; and fried frog legs topped with a medley of herbs like lemongrass and galangal.

A white bowl with a mushroom dish in it with an egg yolk
Shaoxing mushrooms at Nudibranch.
Nudibranch

Little Myanmar

A metal wok of dark red meat curry on the bottom right, with a plate of rice and cup of soup on the upper left.
Goat curry at Little Myanmar.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Burmese food has always been a rare find in NYC, but Little Myanmar is one of a handful of restaurants looking to put more of a spotlight on the cuisine across the city. The family behind the operation famously started out with Yun Cafe, a tiny stall inside a subway station in Jackson Heights (which remains open). But in the East Village, chef Thidar Kyaw is able to stretch out with more space (and with more equipment) and that’s clear in the menu: The restaurant boasts an extensive range of punchy salads, grilled skewers, and both subtle and spicy curries. Don’t miss the goat curry, which Eater critic Robert Sietsema praised as one of the best versions of the dish in the city.

A metal wok of dark red meat curry on the bottom right, with a plate of rice and cup of soup on the upper left.
Goat curry at Little Myanmar.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Potluck Club

Fried chicken strewn with pickled jalapenos with a pair of biscuits in the background.
Salt-and-pepper chicken is served with biscuits.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Offering a playful take on Chinese American food, Potluck Club recently opened in a remote corner of Chinatown. The premises looks like a movie theater, with a marquee that reads, “Here For A Good Time Not A Long Time.” The relatively brief menu embroiders on dishes that might have been found in an old-fashioned Cantonese banquet hall, including salt-and-pepper chicken served anomalously with biscuits, and short ribs braised with kabocha squash. Partners include Cory Ng, Kimberly Ho, Justin Siu, Tommy Leong, Ricky Nguyen, and chef Zhan Chen.

Fried chicken strewn with pickled jalapenos with a pair of biscuits in the background.
Salt-and-pepper chicken is served with biscuits.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Corner Bar

An outdoor table set with steak, fries, a burger, salad, and a martini.
An outdoor spread at Corner Bar.
Daniel Kreiger/Corner Bar

Located in the recently opened Nine Orchard Hotel, Corner Bar is the new restaurant from Ignacio Mattos. Ignore the divey name — stools march along a marble bar and booths look out upon Allen Street, for a little Lower East Side flavor. Hot as it may be outside, the food is cool, fresh, and delicate, from the pristine oyster service to the heirloom tomato salad, which is irresistible. The menu is simple, running to entrees you don’t have to think about too much — spaghetti pomodoro, mussels, and roast chicken. This is hotel food at its best, unfussy yet elegant, just the thing for a weary traveler.

An outdoor table set with steak, fries, a burger, salad, and a martini.
An outdoor spread at Corner Bar.
Daniel Kreiger/Corner Bar

Le Dive