FOOD AND DRINK
Move and Shake: Power Lunching in NYC
No one likes to do business on an empty stomach. So when the need to move and shake collides with the need for sustenance, lunch is in order. Whether you’re looking for a casual business lunch over which to form relationships or a power lunch designed to impress, here are five options to get the job done.
For many New Yorkers, Balthazar is simply the best place for lunch. Full stop. At once a bit frilly in its French Bistro décor, but totally relaxed and inviting, Balthazar is a foolproof stop for a mid-day meal in Soho. It’s busy from morning to night – a great option for breakfast meetings and dinner, as well – and is typically boisterous and noisy, making it a fun and vibrant spot. The menu is classic bistro fare with the requisite steak frites and salads, and tasty profiteroles for dessert. Reservations are recommended as this favoured spot makes calling ahead a necessity.
80 Spring Street, 212-965-1414
When dining with a newer acquaintance, it’s sometimes prudent to stay on the culinary safe side. But when you know that your lunch companions have a palette more adventurous than a plate of pasta, the Spice Market heats things up. A gigantic restaurant in the Meatpacking District, Spice Market is legendary chef Jean-Georges’ take on Asian street food, including sticky-sweet chili chicken wings, curried duck and lobster with garlic and chili. And the food it hot. Really hot. Food aside, the opulence of the gigantic room is a conversation piece in itself, and its sprawling size makes it great for large groups.
403 W. 13th St., 212-675-2322
The Four Seasons has been dubbed the city’s greatest dining room for good reason. Its greatness comes from both its grandeur and the calibre of power lunchers that repose in its lush seats. At lunch, it’s the wood-walled Grill Room’s banquettes that attract all the attention at this midtown legend. The Pool Room has evening cachet, but that room’s seasonally changing foliage and central marble water feature make it a stunning experience at any time. Bison steak, crab cakes, white asparagus with morels and the Dover sole are menu standouts.
99 East 52nd Street, 212-754-9494
Chef Mario Batali has made his mark with restaurants all across Manhattan, including Del Posto. A sweeping, 24,000-square-foot meca of marble and mahogany, this Chelsea outpost is among the city’s very best restaurants. Inventive dishes include an abalone carpaccio and a celery sorbetto, porcini ravioli with chestnut butter, and Neapolitan lamb with salsa madre and spinach. At lunch, Del Posto offers a 3-course prix-fixe for $39.
85 10th Avenue, 212-497-8090
Momofuku Ssäm Bar
Chef David Chang took New York by storm when he opened Momofuku Noodle Bar in 2004. Never had people been willing to wait quite so long for noodles. Chang’s second restaurant in his now-mini-empire with Ssäm bar. Originally conceived as an Asian style burrito bar, the menu has now shifted to be a meat lover’s paradise (indeed, the menu states “We do not serve vegetarian-friendly items.”) Pork buns are the house special, but the menu also includes items like kimchi apple salad, brisket over vermicelli, and rotisserie duck. Momofuku Ssäm Bar also offers a $25, three-course lunch special.
207 Second Avenue, 212-254-3500