Momofuku Nishi

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81 Good

David Chang’s take on Italian fare with plenty of Asian influences.

232 Eighth Ave., New York, NY, 10011

646-518-1919

http://nishi.momofuku.com/

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The lowdown

The Italian-inflected member of the Momofuku empire took a while to grow into its Chelsea digs, but the current iteration finally meshes with the neighborhood. Cozy banquettes; chairs that are unusually comfortable by any restaurant standard, let alone the bench-favoring Momofuku; and a courteous staff, though all off-brand for owner David Chang, make Nishi a very nice place to eat. Chef Joshua Pinsky has a light touch, imparting big flavor without weighing dishes down. His kitchen excels at gemlike crudi, homemade pastas, and lovingly prepared proteins. The near-iconic ceci e pepe, a coil of bucatini sauced with fermented-chickpea paste and flecked in black pepper, is worth a visit alone, as is the tender monkfish, coated in a charred-scallion-and-olive rub, plated with blistered tomatoes and basil.

What you need to know

DrinksFull Bar

Noise LevelCivilized