More than one year into the coronavirus pandemic, restaurants across the city continue to move forward with openings, sometimes because their concepts could be adapted for takeout and delivery, but more often because their owners saw no other choice but to forge ahead. Since March 16, 2020, when the state first temporarily closed indoor dining, hundreds of new restaurants have opened their doors. This list of pandemic-born businesses includes restaurants serving Korean-Cajun gumbo, vegan soul food, late-night bites, and bowls of Taiwanese noodle soup.
Here’s a round-up of the restaurants and bars that opened in April. This list will be updated weekly. If there’s an opening in your neighborhood that we’ve missed, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Astoria: Ruta Oaxaca opened its doors in January, bringing an impressive selection of Oaxacan moles to Queens. The Mexican restaurant from co-owners Jose Castillo Reyes, Iris Castillo, and Carlos and Felipe Arellano serves mole Oaxaca, amarillo, and verde, along with other varieties as occasional specials. Open for takeout, delivery, and outdoor and indoor dining. 35-03 Broadway, between 35th and 36th streets
Chelsea: Australian coffee shop chain Bluestone Lane opens three new locations today through a partnership with Chelsea Piers: A cafe located on the north end of the Manhattan sports complex, and coffee shops at Chelsea Piers Fitness in Manhattan and Brooklyn. 62 Chelsea Piers Pier 62, near West 22nd Street
Crown Heights: Jungle Juice Cafe celebrated its grand opening with a juice tasting on March 22. Located a short distance from the Brooklyn Museum and Botanic Garden, the neighborhood cafe is serving juices and açai bowls. 843 Classon Avenue, between Lincoln Place and Eastern Parkway
East Village: Ravi DeRossi, the restaurateur behind Ladybird, Avant Garden, and Proletariat, moves forward with expansion plans in the East Village this week. Cadence is his latest project, a vegan Southern and soul food restaurant run by Shenarri Freeman, a Richmond, Virginia-born chef who previously worked at Avant Garden. Open for outdoor and indoor dining. 122 East Seventh Street, near Avenue A
East Village: A restaurant serving Taiwanese beef noodles has opened in the former location of Chinese seafood boil restaurant Le Sia. Four Four South Village, which also has a second outpost in Flushing, serves beef noodle soups, sesame oil chicken soups, and luwei, a selection of braised meats and vegetables. Open for takeout and outdoor and indoor dining. 11 East Seventh Street, near Third Avenue
East Village: Emerging hospitality group 29Monroe unveiled its second project this month, a bar and lounge called Writing on the Wall. The space is billed as an “upscale companion” to the Orchard Room, the group’s first project that opened in the former Max Fish space earlier this month. Reservations for indoor dining are available Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday from 6 to 11 p.m. 244 East Houston Street, near Avenue A
Greenpoint: The Meat Hook team is now serving its popular burger from a counter at Threes Brewing in Greenpoint. Similar to the butcher’s set-up at Threes Brewing in Gowanus, the Meat Hook Burger Shop will serve burgers, fried chicken sandwiches, and meatball parmesan sandwiches. 113 Franklin Street, at Kent Street
Hell’s Kitchen: From acclaimed Japanese restaurateur Akio Nadamoto comes Prime Meat Rokko, a new restaurant specializing in chicken, beef, pork, and duck cutlet. Nadamoto has eight barbecue restaurants in Japan and a ninth in Cambodia, but the Hell’s Kitchen outpost is his first United States debut. There are eight seats outdoors and 30 seats inside. 783 Ninth Avenue, near West 52nd Street
Prospect Lefferts Gardens: Fiona’s Bar, a neighborhood watering hole with a sizable birch tree in its dining room, opened on Flatbush Avenue at the beginning of March. The bar has been in the works since October 2017, according to co-owner Adrianne Wilcox, when she and partners Matt Kuhn and Matt Kimmett entered a hand-shake agreement with the building’s landlord. More than three years later, the bar is now serving cocktails, a dozen or so beers, and $8 beer and shot specials. 562 Flatbush Avenue, at Beekman Place
Upper East Side: Chef Jae Jung, a fine dining veteran who worked for the late New Orleans chef Leah Chase and as the sous chef at Upper East Side French restaurant Café Boulud, has opened Kjun, a Korean-Cajun delivery-and-takeout restaurant. Direct message the restaurant on Instagram for a 10 percent discount on orders. 345 East 62nd Street, between First Avenue and the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge Upper Roadway
Upper West Side: Beloved Brooklyn-based ice cream brand Blue Marble breaks out with a new location in Manhattan, where co-founders Jennie Dundas and Alexis Gallivan will sell coffee, pints, and baked goods from Colson Patisserie. The company, which started as a scoop shop in Prospect Heights in 2007, has since grown into a multi-million dollar business, with an ice cream production facility in Sunset Park. 2578 Broadway, at 97th Street
Flatiron District: There’s a star-studded cast backing this newly opened Manhattan restaurant. Sona comes from first-time restaurateur Maneesh Goyal and David Rabin, a partner at the Lambs Club, while Indian actress and producer Priyanka Chopra Jonas is serving as a creative director for the restaurant. From an outdoor dining set-up, chef Hari Nayak is serving butter chicken, tamarind lamb chops, and gruyere dosas. 36 East 20th Street, between Broadway and Park Avenue South