Best Restaurant Atmosphere, 2013



Stein’s pick: When the evening sun casts long shadows through the windows of Lafayette, Andrew Carmellini’s Adonis of a restaurant, the faces of the beautiful people who sit inside are imprinted with the name writ in reverse. For the name is thus inscribed on the windows—Lafayette, Lafayette, Lafayette—and the shadows fall on happy faces in a happy room. There’s no better room in any restaurant in New York City right now than Lafayette. It’s elegant and fun, loud but not aggressive. It’s the kind of atmosphere you want to be in, because it makes you a better you.

Ozersky responds: Gag me with a spoon!


Ozersky’s pick: Having a soft spot as I do for the plutocratic opulence of yore, I would have to say Villard Michel Richard, whose gilded, Louis XIV dining room makes Daniel look industrial. As a working-class Jew from Atlantic City, citadels of high-class, goyishe privilege hold an unalterable hold on my heart, and I only wish I could feel more at home there. In contrast, the painstakingly insouciant decor and collegiate buzz of the Downtown rookie restaurants is strictly for the birds.

Stein responds: Ozersky, have you been to Villard? Honestly, have you?


  Best Restaurant Atmosphere, 2013