Fordham & Grand
Open for lunch, dinner and supper, this wine bar and restaurant gets busy until the wee hours of the morning.
Inspired by the cross street of Fordham and Grand in the Bronx back in the prohibition-era, this speakeasy-style spot is outfitted with plenty of dark wood and dishes out comforting fare like scallop risotto with bottarga and lobster linguine with coriander and chili. The best bit: they’re open till three in the morning, so you can chow down on steak and fries while you throw back agreeable tipples such as Negronis well into the night.
Ok, so speakeasy-style joints are dime a dozen these days, but that doesn’t mean they don’t work when done right. Case in point: Fordham & Grand, a place inspired by the New York cross street of Fordham and Grand in the Bronx (which was really hopping with bootleggers during prohibition). The space is dark and cavernous—with no windows—so it feels really hidden. It’s hard to tell how much time has gone by while you’re inside (quite a dangerous proposition seeing as they open till 3pm).
Still, they’re not obnoxious about maintaining exclusivity: There is signage—unassuming and nondescript as it is—and no silly passwords. We could see ourselves returning to this hangout for straightforward generous dishes, smart cocktails and affordable wines (they’ve got 100 bottles priced under $100).
Our top picks food-wise are the beef steak and fries ($30)—the best version you can get in town for the price we reckon—and the lobster linguine ($28), a flavorful plate of Asian-inspired noodles flecked with ginger and coriander, and crowned with an impressively-sized lobster claw. The food isn’t complicated. It’s just a nice accompaniment to the playful yet grownup cocktails (modern takes on classics) such as their pina colada ($18), which includes coconut water instead of the usual heavy coconut cream.
Service is on the slow side but they try hard. (Mortified about spilling a couple of fries when laying down our steak, the server compensated us with a heaped order of golden fried potatoes—a totally unnecessary but appreciated gesture). It’s an open secret now, but for us night owls, there are few better spots to wile away a good chunk of the evening (and morning) with good grub and smooth drinks.
Eat this at Fordham & Grand: French toast with rum sabayon. It's one of I-S Magazine's 50 things to eat before you die (2013).