New & Noteworthy Restaurants on the Upper East Side
The Upper East Side is home to a wealth of classic New York City fine-dining institutions—but it also remains the top destination for chefs and restaurateurs seeking to make waves in the culinary world. Within a quick walk of the Museum Mile apartment rentals at 985 Fifth Avenue and 800 Fifth Avenue, you’ll find establishments that build upon long-held culinary traditions, artfully reimagine classic dishes, and pioneer new paths in an ever-expanding gastronomic universe. Below are a few of our recent discoveries, all either just up the street or around the block from 985 Fifth Avenue and 800 Fifth Avenue.
Few types of cooking honor traditions by being new and daring, but foremost among them is the art of sushi. Omakase is a true culinary adventure in this vein, for you never know what the chef will plate and send to the table. At Sushi Jin, your tolerance (or desire) for mystery is always rewarded with the freshest selections of delicate cuts and beautifully arranged pieces that will make you take an extra pause to appreciate the sight of the platter before savoring its resplendent tastes. For either $95 or $125 (depending upon the size of the omakase), Chef Satoshi will dazzle you with cherry sea bream or maybe a newly invented handroll. The seared Japanese barracuda, garnished with flavorful flakes of hard-boiled egg and yuzu zest, is of particular note and a rare treat within a city boasting some of the country’s best sushi restaurants. While you’ll be tempted to gobble what’s before you, the light jazz that plays in the background will be sure to ease your pace as you make your way toward dessert and a bit more tea.
Beyond the roe of that roll, Marky’s on Madison has quickly become our favorite spot to pick up “farm-to-spoon” caviar that is quite possibly the freshest on the local market. They offer Russian and Siberian Osetra, Sterlet, and Sevruga, among others, as well as an international selection that’s second to none. They’ve recently brought these glorious offerings to an 800-square-foot café at the back of the store called HŪSO, which, as NYC’s first “caviar speakeasy,” is steps beyond the traditional in its presentation of a multicourse evening meal. They are also the first in the United States to offer beluga caviar from their own domestic aquafarm: a bold act of sustainability that also provides a product of consistently high quality. Set against the backdrop of plushly appointed blue-tufted booths, the opulent dishes showcase caviar as both a centerpiece of and complement to impressive new twists in its service. During the day, you can indulge in a few cocktails and experience “highlights” from this menu. Whenever you visit, if you’ve never had caviar for dessert, then the honey-filled honey cake with ice cream, six grams of Russian Imperial Golden Osetra caviar, and crisped honey leaf will be an excellent first introduction.
While they operate locations in other parts of the city, Mission Ceviche is new to the Upper East Side. Flavorful, healthy, and wonderfully rich, the menu reflects the diversity of Peru’s people and landscape. Mountains, oceans, deserts, and the dense jungles of the Amazon have welcomed people from around the world, including those from Spain, countries of the Far East, and Africa. This cultural influx, combined with the natural offerings of a biodiverse Peruvian landscape, brings together on the same menu the sashimi cuts of tiradito de pescado, crisp fish and chips, an eight-hour slow-braised short ribs seco norteño, and pork belly with pineapple rocoto chutney. Under the purposeful guidance of Chef Jose Luis Chavez, the menu is indeed a masterful symphony of flavors rising above a cacophony of ingredients. Nothing better signifies his ability to creatively meld elements across this spectrum than his signature ceviche bowls. In the seafood mixto, octopus and shrimp are bridged to avocado mousse with a spike of aji Amarillo pepper and just the right amount of lime. The Classic Ceviche Bowl performs the same culinary jujitsu, this time using rocoto pepper and lime as a means to marry sweet potato mousse to the catch of the day. Sample what he has assembled or venture out and build your own bowl. You can’t miss, no matter what turn you take.
It’s an exciting time on the Upper East Side for foodies and wine connoisseurs alike. Within a few blocks of 985 Fifth Avenue and 800 Fifth Avenue, marquee chefs create inspired cuisine that ups the bar ever higher in one of the world’s greatest and most competitive food destinations. There’s no hype here: only delicious reinvention and smartly created plates at eateries that deserve a try (and repeat visits). Make a reservation and then take a stroll to your new local favorite from your new Fifth Avenue apartment.