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“Apiary by guest reviewer Kiri Tannenbaum”

  Occasion: Cuisine: Area: Cost: Rating:
  Night Out New American East Village Moderate Good

Five years ago I was set up on my most successful "blind date." The place? Casa Mono. My date? Andrea Strong. Andrea and I were introduced by our mutual friend and editor, Pat Cobe who thought the two of us would hit it off—she was right. Andrea and I were both career changers into the world of food, we were both single, and most importantly: we were neighbors in Gramercy Park. So close in fact, that the backs of our buildings faced each other. As our friendship grew we met many a night at the neighborhood watering hole, Bar Jamon, shared stories over sake at our Japanese joint, Choshi, and caught up over coffee at 71. 

Since our first date (as you all know by now) Andrea has fallen in love, married, and even got knocked up. If all that weren’t enough life change for one woman (that woman being me) she also abandoned me. Yep, packed up and shipped out to where everyone goes when they fall in love, get married, and knocked up: Brooklyn.

Since Andrea (and Craig) moved a little over a year ago, I’ve been left to navigate the murky waters of restaurants in our neck of the woods. Don’t get me wrong, of course living near Union Square I have easy access to an array of amazing restaurants: Gramercy Tavern, Irving Mill, Bar Jamon, and—RIP—Amai. But in the 12 years that I’ve lived in the neighborhood there has rarely been a gastronomic motive, other than to meet Andrea on the corner, for me to venture to Third Avenue. That has since changed. Late last summer Apiary, a sleek, boutiquey little restaurant, popped up an unlikely stretch of Third Avenue wedged between Renew + Relax (a nail salon) and The Pourhouse (a fratty sports bar). Odd coordinates for a venue that boasts sweetbreads and skate. I didn’t rush to visit, instead waited until spring with the bees buzzing and for Apiary to work out their kinks. One of which was installing new chef Scott Bryan.  

Though new to Apiary, Chef Bryan is no newcomer. His decade long career includes stints at Gotham Bar & Grill, Bouley, Le Bernardin, Lespinasse, and Veritas where he received three stars from The New York Times. No doubt he knows his way around a kitchen. Bryan’s menu at Apiary definitely tells the tale of his journey through the upscale restaurants of New York with his own Global and modern bent.

Leah and I were the first to arrive and snuggled up in the corner of the chocolate noir bar beside a few two-top ... [more, click below]

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