Art, meet your new neighbor, culinary art. The museums and cultural institutions of New York City are elevating the dining experience within their walls to match the stature of the art. Snack no more, these new restaurants are true celebrations of food and design, often matching the theme of the museum itself. Experienced restaurateurs, not just caterers or institutional food service organizations, have been summoned to revive the dining options for the weary of art.
Russ & Daughters recently opened in the Jewish Museum on the Upper East Side bringing bagels, bialys and their famous smoked fishes and knishes north from their traditional location on the Lower East Side. It’s an opportunity to eat an authentic meal in a “nouveau deli” setting that perfectly aligns with the artistic experience upstairs.
The neighboring Cooper Hewitt recently tapped Tarallucci y Vino, the successful Italian Restaurant Group with 5 locations in Manhattan, to serve panini and pasticceria, with the ease and elegance of Italy’s coffee bars. A highly stylized cafe with terrace access, they also host a summer music series in the garden. Around the corner at the Neue Gallerie, Café Sabarsky, named for the museum co-founder, mimics Viennese elegance, offering a Sachertorte finish to Eastern European fare.
Out in Queens, the very trendy M.Wells Dinette has opened in the most contemporary of settings, MoMA PS 1., the modern art institution, channeling a classic cafeteria with stainless steel flair.
And up in the Bronx, The New York Botanical Garden selected Stephen Starr to cultivate a food scene with Hudson Garden Grill, the first full service dining option on the garden grounds.