Ana Bar & Restaurant
A convivial self-service buffet of hot and cold dishes, with an emphasis on eat-in or take-out vegetable preparations, is the centerpiece of this new casual dining area on the second floor of the Hudson Yards Shops building. . Replacing Citarella Market, it mainly sells prepared foods and is the work of Anna Castellani, who created Foragers Markets, DeKalb Market Hall and the Hugh Food Hall. Buffet selections, such as charred Brussels sprouts, roasted sweet potatoes, fennel parmesan, kale salad, saffron rice, poached salmon, citrus prawns, and chicken thighs with olives, are sold by the pound, $16.99, which they say accounts for the weight of the container. Customers weigh and purchase their choices on a wall of scales with digital registers. On weekends, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., brunch dishes like smoked salmon and egg dishes are also available by the pound, $24.99. At the entrance to the large open space, a café-bar also sells juices and pastries from 8 am. For made-to-order options, there’s a taco stand and pizzeria for assorted squares of pies, plus an independent bar that serves small plates and pizza. Coming soon, a Bronx Brewery, with brewing on site. Downstairs is the Ana Wine & Spirits boutique.
20 Hudson Yards (10th Avenue and 31st Street), Level 2, anafoodandwine.com.
This new Mexican spot from Danny Abrams and Cindy Smith, owners of Mermaid Inn restaurants, is a departure. Not only does it offer different cuisine, but the menu is also less seafood-focused. The chef, Victor Marin, is from Cuautla, just south of Mexico City, and who Ms Smith said had been interested in highlight the food he has known since childhood. The restaurant occupies the former location of the Mermaid Oyster Bar, which moved to a larger space nearby last fall and where Mr Marin was the chef. In a space with a bar in front and a wall of cactus, it offers a fairly classic menu of Mexican shrimp cocktails; cheese flutes; tuna tostada; tortilla soup; aguachile fluke; and street tacos with birria, pork al pastor, Baja-style fish, and zucchini. Large plates include skirt steak, roast chicken, and whole roast Idaho trout, among others.
79 Macdougal Street (West Houston Street), 212-400-8800, themermaidnyc.com.
Korean home cooking is a specialty of chef Brian Kim, who came to the United States to attend the Culinary Institute of America and opened Oiji in the East Village with another chef. His latest venture, Oiji Mi, with Maximillian Soh, the COO and a managing partner, is in a sleek, understated setting by AvroKo. Its dark wood accents, velvet, leather, and marble tables reflect the private clubs that dotted the Flatiron neighborhood nearly a century ago. Mr. Kim’s food represents inventive Korean fusion, with dishes on a five-course prix fixe menu ($125) like foie gras with gastric bokbunja (black raspberry) and brioche; a bo ssam for two with pork belly, oysters and mustard reseda; and cashew kong-guksu (nut milk broth) with optional capellini, prawns and caviar.
17 West 19th Street, 212-256-1259, oijimi.com.
Israeli chef and restaurateur Eyal Shani has a global empire of around 40 restaurants, including Miznon, HaSalon and Naked Tomato in New York. Now he’s opening this intimate showcase (pronounced shmo-NEH, Hebrew for eight) for his distinctive style of Levantine cuisine, emphasizing seasonal ingredients. The former Neta space, with a central open kitchen, will seat 50 people and produce freshly baked breads like bourkas and focaccias, vegetable dishes like grilled white asparagus, seafood and meats, including charcoal-grilled sardines and lamb skewers. The menu will change daily. French wines dominate the list, although there are a few bottles from the Middle East. (Opens Thursday)
61 West Eighth Street, 646-438-9815, shmonenyc.com.