New York’s Best New Restaurants of 2023 – The New York Times

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The theme of this year’s list of my favorite new restaurants in New York City is: bigger.

Some of the places I reviewed most enthusiastically this year were bigger versions of existing restaurants. I Sodi, where fans of Rita Sodi’s Tuscan cooking used to be packed in tighter than anchovies, moved around the corner and grew several sizes. Superiority Burger traded its six original burger desks (maximum occupancy: one) for an assortment of booths, counter seats, bar stools and cocktail tables inside a former coffee shop on Avenue A. Finally, it also has a kitchen large enough to contain some of Brooks Headley’s ideas.

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We could debate whether I Sodi and Superiority Burger deserve slots on a list of new restaurants. Let’s not, though. Instead of letting them take up spaces that might have gone to entirely new businesses, I made the list bigger. This year, I’m writing about 12 favorite “new” restaurants instead of the 10 I’ve typically named.

Whether you see Torrisi Bar & Restaurant as the long-awaited resurrection of Torrisi Italian Specialties or as an original work addressing some of the same themes, it’s definitely way bigger. It’s got a long bar of green marble, two high-tops and an upholstered dining room, all wrapped around an open kitchen. Like some of my other favorites this year — Mischa, Hav & Mar, Naro and Tatiana by Kwame Onwuachi — Torrisi has square feet to spare, and deploys multiple centers of activity across the space to create a sense of theater.

They all represent a style of dining that all but disappeared in 2020, 2021 and even parts of last year. Small, friendly joints in residential areas found ways to thrive in the WFH economy of the pandemic. Larger, more expensive spots, which often rely on business meals and out-of-town visitors, did not.

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