Have you noticed that most new Manhattan restaurants are variations on a theme? With few exceptions, these places look alike (sleek and design-y, but intentionally not overwrought), sound alike ("We're trying to give the neighborhood a place where they can come four times a week," owners declare), and taste alike (there's something for everyone on the menu -- and probably octopus and kale, too -- no matter the cuisine). They're even priced alike: You're probably going to drop $60 on a weeknight, $100 on a weekend -- not so much that you have buyer's remorse, but not so little that you don't feel it, either. There are exceptions, of course, but it's hard to buck the formula in New York's most expensive borough. After all, formulas make it easy for an investor to see how they might make a profit. And given the price of doing business in Manhattan these days, that assurance must be nice.
|Orleans sits under the M train|
Out in the wilds of Brooklyn, however, restaurants cram themselves into any old space imaginable, which is why Orleans (603 Hart Street, Brooklyn) can inhabit a triangle-shaped outdoor sliver right underneath the M train and no one thinks it's weird.More »