Your Guide to NYC Restaurant Week

This is a very difficult story for me to write at the moment because I skipped breakfast and this is making my stomach growl, but here we go!  Restaurant Week kicked off on Monday and will last through March 7th.  I have compiled a list for you of the top 5 restaurants I think you should try!

What used to be a seven-day event has now been extended to three weeks, giving restaurant goers even more chances to try the exceptional eateries that are participating.  Diners can take part in three-course lunches for $25, while three-course dinners will cost $38.  Whether you’re a major foodie like me or only dine out on occasion, Restaurant Week has something for everyone.  It is the ideal time for exploring new and old restaurants in the city that you wouldn’t ordinarily try.  This is the time to Indulge in that pricier restaurant you’ve always wanted to indulge in, or revisit a regular favorite that you just can’t get enough of.  One perk of trying somewhere new is that you can dine in an area of the city you don’t usually frequent.  It’s the perfect cure for the cabin fever we, New Yorkers are dealing with right now.  I, for one, never need an excuse to go out to eat but it’s not always cost effective.  Each restaurant will have a special 3-course menu just for this event that will highlight the dishes that best represents their eatery.

Click here for the complete list of participating restaurants.   No matter which place you dine at, be sure to make comments below and share your experience with us!

 1. Lafayette (Lower East Side – French)

This is one of my favorite new restaurants of 2013 and it has certainly caught on as a trendy place to eat.  Restaurateur Andrew Carmellini offers you a modern take on French classics and, along with their attached bakery and amazing pastries, you’ll feel like you’re in Paris.  As with a lot of French menus, it can be an overwhelming experience of choices.  That is why it is perfect to dine here during Restaurant Week when you can enjoy a set menu with the best they have to offer.

 2. Craftbar (Gramercy – New American)

Out of all of Tom Colicchio’s NYC restaurants (Colicchio & Sons, Craft, and Craftbar), I prefer Craftbar.  Even though this is the more casual of the three, the food is still refined and creative.  The restaurant week menu has a few of my favorite Craft dishes: ricotta meatballs, pecorino risotto balls, and duck heart with dumplings.  If you dine here, you’re in for a culinary treat.

3.  Atlantic Grill (UES & UWS – Seafood)

Atlantic Grill is a deservedly very popular restaurant in NYC.  It serves upscale seafood and has a very large menu that will please everyone.  I highly recommend your picking this for a special lunch.  The elegant fish dishes are on the lighter side so it won’t fill you up, which is perfect if you’re dinning on your lunch break.  Also it is very chic and classy if you want to impress for a work date.  Try the tempura Shrimp Maki Roll and the Scottish Salmon.   It may sound simple but the flavors are complex and imaginative.

 4. Tamarind (Tribeca – Indian)

Do you love Indian cuisine but want a fancy experience?  Look no further than Tamarind.  The room is chic and modern.   You may be weary of the quality but the food is intensely flavorful and innovative.  It is on the expensive side so  is the perfect time to try it out.  Just looking at the menu for Restaurant Week is making my mouth water.  Trust me, anything you order will be delicious.

5. La Cenita (Meatpacking District -Mexican)

The rest of the places on this list are great for a special date, but I recommend La Cenita for a night out with the girls.  With it’s Mexican inspired cuisine, this Meatpacking District hot spot has fabulous drinks and small plates perfect for sharing.  The Restaurant Week menu here includes dishes like the Pescado Tacos and the Chicken served with queso fresco, plantains and guajillo.

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