Union Square Cafe is to NYC as steel is to skyscrapers, so regulars practically went into mourning when news broke that it was shuttering. But Danny Meyer doesn't disappoint, and when it re-opened nearly a year later in a shiny new locale, everyone breathed a sigh of relief-and promptly made reservations. Nobody does relaxed elegance like the aforementioned restaurateur, and this two-story space is no exception. Service is exemplary whether you're a local or Broadway star, and the menu is filled with upmarket takes on crowd faves-everything from the ever-popular burger to a silky and savory cauliflower sformato. And with an option like triple-layer espresso chocolate cake with locally roasted espresso ganache on the menu, you'd be crazy to skip dessert.
- MICHELIN guide inspectors