Location shaped Alex Stupak’s latest restaurant. With his flagship Empellón just two blocks away, Mr. Stupak, a former pastry chef, said he was “forced to make it not Mexican,” the cuisine for which he has become known. Drawing on his heritage (Ukrainian, Italian), a love for New York and the diverse American food scene, he has created a wide-ranging menu of interpretations on dishes like tater tots (long, crisp tubes), Caesar salad (rooted in Chinese broccoli) and a vegetarian burger (a mushroom patty melt). The pastas, kasha varnishkas, varenyky dumplings and brown butter spaetzle, are Eastern European. “Italy does not own pasta,” he said. Tuna poke, steaks, fried chicken and a housemade hot dog served with a raft of condiments are also on the day-into-evening menu. On a level overlooking the Hugh food hall, in the Citigroup Center, there’s a stretch of honey-toned bar surrounded by tables at banquettes. Hang a right, and you’re in a somewhat more formal dining room done in steely blue tones. An airy private room that doubles for à la carte, and the kitchen sit beyond. As for the name, it’s personal. Mr. Stupak said it’s what he was almost named.
157 East 53rd Street, 212-466-6381, mischa-nyc.com.
Heritage Grand Bakery Restaurant & Pizza Bar
The Venetian plaster, stone décor and exposed beams in this space suggest the Greek Islands, not pizza. But right up front, in the dining room, are a pair of domed pizza ovens facing a dining counter. The spacious room is adjacent to the Heritage Grand Bakery, with breads, pastries and sandwiches, that opened in late December. Both are joined in the rear by an open mixing room, where heirloom grains are milled for the baked goods, pastas and pizzas. The menu roams the Mediterranean, featuring deviled eggs, salads, charred cauliflower, roasted lamb chops and heirloom grain pastas. Running the show are Lou Ramirez from Maison Kayser and Le Pain Quotidien, the French baker Luc Boulet and the financier Alex Garese. (Opens Wednesday)
8 West 40th Street, 212-419-9163, heritagegrandbakery.com.
Somewhat hidden behind the sprawling seafood restaurant Oceans is a barrel-vaulted, brick-walled space that now houses this Italian restaurant. The executive chef, Andy Kitko, also runs the kitchen at Oceans. The Italian menu lists many dishes with names you know, including burrata, carpaccio, polpette, bucatini, branzino and parm. (Wednesday)
100 East 19th Street, 212-209-1054, carlottonewyork.com.
This food hall slipped quietly into its Upper West Side location a couple of months ago. It offers foods by chefs like Bobby Flay, Marc Murphy and Michael Symon, as well as Di Fara Pizza and Tejas Barbecue from Texas. The owner, Marc Lore, an entrepreneur who plans more of these in coming months, bought the rights to use the names and recipes of companies like Bobby Flay Steak and Di Fara Pizza. He has also worked with the chefs to perfect recipes for food that is all prepared in a single kitchen. Unlike the average ghost kitchen, which is limited to delivery and pickup, there is seating.
2030 Broadway (70th Street), 855-818-5755, wonder.com.