At the inaugural World Restaurant Awards held this week in Paris, two of New York's own were among the long-list nominees in the "Best Atmosphere" category - and they couldn't be more different.
Though the title ultimately went to modern L.A. eatery Vespertine, NYC's Eleven Madison Park, which is widely considered one of the best restaurants in the world, was unsurprisingly in the running for the category, for which "service, acoustics and overall ambience are considered." After the months-long renovation led by owners chef Daniel Humm and restaurateur Will Guidara back in 2017, the swanky, white-napkin space was certainly a to-be-expected contender.
View this post on InstagramThank you @eggcanvas for choosing us to celebrate your special day. Cheers to many more birthdays and beautiful evenings! #ElevenMadisonPark #MakeItNice
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But as for the other New York hot spot up for the top spot? Astoria Seafood, a hole-in-the-wall eat-in seafood market that's nevertheless one of NYC's best-kept secrets, and perhaps one of the biggest reasons to go to Queens.
View this post on InstagramLight dinner 🐙😋 #astoriaseafood #yum #astoria #fun #nyc
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The family-run business, informed by generations of Greek fishing tradition, began as a wholesale market over a decade ago and has since expanded to include a casual dining room beloved by locals. But don't let the plastic utensils fool you - the seafood selection and seasonal dishes are definitely worthy of five stars. And as for the fun, relaxed, and BYOB atmosphere (which has been known to result in some impromptu dance parties)? Well, no wonder it got a nod in Paris.
View this post on InstagramHow much #seafood can we eat with these lovely friends? اسماك السعاده 😂😂😂
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[Photo via @wen_the_travel_begins]