Golden hour. It grounds you in the present. You can try to take a picture, but you’ll never capture the way it makes you feel — warm inside, and calm, maybe a bit excited, but mostly appreciative, satisfied, at ease. It brings to mind summer nights, but it does occur in the winter. The only difference is that you don't want to be outside in the cold, which is why it’s pure magic when your face is awash in Capri sunlight flooding into a barroom on a chilly Sunday evening. You're standing up against a slab of sleek silver, as a person in neat linen asks if they can get you something to drink.
The atmosphere is classy-cool, the setting is bare-bones bistro, the vibe is fresh-faced buzz. You’re in downtown Manhattan, of course.
It took you 25 minutes to decide what you wanted to order from Dimes on Caviar just yesterday, but here in this moment, you know exactly what you want. Bubbly.
When they tilt the magnum of guava-colored juice down from their eyebrows and pour you a glass of the soft fizz, you delight in your instinct.
Later, in the dining room, you can feel the harmonic dance happening around you. Everything comes together, and you uncover every last detail with thrill. Amber leather booths; bright pink chicories in a nutty, punchy salad; duck with glossy, burnt-orange skin; toasty frites; chalky purple wine; a thin slice of caramelly tarte tatin. Rectangular mirrors slope down from the ceiling, flowery stencils in lead mark the creamy white walls, a blonde luster made of fluorescents overhead and brass accents throughout permeates the room.
When it's over, and you push through the heavy, polished wood doors and land on West Broadway, you’re left with only one worry: how do I get the house number?
Is there a restaurant that has left you completely enchanted? Tell me about it!
241 W Broadway, New York, NY 10013
P.S. If you go, order this: chicorees aux agrumes, la mortadella, charred carrots with labneh, duck frites, vanilla millefeuille. (Warning: the menu changes frequently!)