With some of New York’s finest chefs and operators coming together to celebrate the culinary wonders of New York City for the Resy Drive-Thru, we asked the restaurant participants a short, single question with myriad answers: What do you love about New York?
Linguine and clams at Don Peppe before and after long flights out of JFK. The little world we’ve built on Court Street, all the people in it, and Table 1 at Frankies 457 Spuntino. Quick afternoon breaks cruising the river on our boat. The way chef Mitsuru Tamura makes all your problems disappear the moment you sit down in front of him at Yasuda. And Sundays — long New York Sundays, the very best kind — filled with family, friends, and a good bottle or two of white Burgundy.— Frank Castronovo and Frank Falcinelli, Frankies
I love the accessibility of food and culture in New York. As a recent immigrant in the ’80s living in Queens on a student budget, I was able to explore and discover so many cuisines, from South Asian to Greek, Middle Eastern, and more. To this day, New York is a place where different cultures can express their food in so many beautiful ways.— Nasim Alikhani, Sofreh
I was born and raised in New York City, and I can’t imagine living anywhere else in the world. No other city can compare to its fast-paced hustle, while being surrounded by people from all different backgrounds. All different cuisines are so easily accessible, at almost all hours of the day. Every block can feel so different, and so fast with different ethnic groups — and that’s my favorite part.— Calvin Eng, Bonnie’s
One thing I love about New York is that it is truly the city that never sleeps (pre-pandemic, anyway). If you want, you could get a pedicure in Times Square at midnight, which suits a chef’s schedule!— Ayesha Nurdjaja, Shuka and Shukette
I think what I love about this city is its endless possibility to change you. The energy in this ever-changing city is dynamic and if you let yourself go, there are so many versions of yourself you can meet along the way. I love how this city is giving me so much to learn and appreciate.— Giovanni Cervantes, Taqueria Ramirez
Another thing that I love about this city is friends! Here, I have met the most diverse and exquisite kind of people that I couldn’t have met anywhere else. Making friends here is so natural and so relevant, to thrive and to share with the world what you are made of.
One of my favorite things about New York is its diversity of food. Being a chef, I love experimenting with flavors and in New York, I can experience so many different cuisines from around the world right in my backyard. New York also has this constant energy you feel everywhere you go. There’s no other place like New York.— Marcus Woods, Sylvia’s Restaurant
I love New York for its pizza, obviously. As a student of all things pizza, I’m in awe of the history, culture and deliciousness that New York has embedded in its streets. No other city in America shows how fast life moves — how wonderful, intense, and delicious it can be.— Dan Richer, Razza
I love the diversity of this city, and I love that in New York City, you can be your true self. Working in the restaurant industry has allowed me to come across so many different people with so many different backgrounds; it’s like the whole world came together to create this vibrant city.— Bun Cheam, Red Hook Tavern
I love just knowing that I can go to Joe’s Pizza around the corner from my house in the middle of the night, even if I don’t do it very often. And I love the sense of belonging in New York. This city has people from everywhere, and everyone is accepted here. New York is a place where you can be yourself.— Renata Ameni, Crown Shy
I’m still relatively new to New York, so I’m still working my way around all the various neighborhoods. Of course, I spend most of my time in the areas near our restaurants, but I am most enamored with the people I meet on a daily basis. New Yorkers have no problem approaching you, and are not afraid to tell you what they think – and because of that, I have had the most interesting conversations with total strangers.— Chintan Pandya, Dhamaka
I just love how many cultures convene together and make New York the ultimate melting pot. I don’t think that the food I prepare would’ve been as well received in any other part of the U.S.
My favorite thing about New York is that we have such talented and diverse people to work with and learn from. Our industry is so vibrant because of the way these different backgrounds come together. From my fellow chefs and staff to the purveyors of the Union Square Greenmarket— they are the reason we New Yorkers have access to some of the best food and beverage in the world.— Lena Ciardullo, Union Square Cafe