Mon-Fri, 7am-10:30am, 11:30am-2:30pm, 5pm-11pm; Sat, 7am-10:30am and 5pm-11pm; Sun, 7am-10:30am
4, 5, 6, 7, S at Grand Central-42nd St.; B, D, F, M at 47th-50th Sts.-Rockefeller Center
American Express, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
An enticing addition to the Grand Central-area dining scene is cause for celebration, but Tenpenny would be worth knowing whatever neighborhood it happened to be in. The collaboration between Chef Christopher Cipollone (formerly of Dylan Prime) and Jeffrey Tascarella who oversees the front of the house (including the serious bar) is better than you'd expect, an answer finally, for that "Where can we go after getting off the train?" question. Having put most of their capital into the kitchen, only $3000 was left for dining room décor, and it shows. However, once seated in the somewhat awkwardly laid-out room (this is still the Gotham Hotel, in midtown, after all) proceed directly to the whimsical seasonal vegetables: in spring, "dirt" is actually roasted sunchoke crumble and zucchini blossom petals are candied with simple syrup and pressed flat; autumn brings fallen leaves; winter, a snowy platescape with what might look like holly berries. The rest of the menu gets monthly overhauls so one month's exceptionally juicy bourbon-sauced pork rack and small savory apple pie, phase into other delicacies the next. Even dinner rolls impress—warm pretzel buns materialize, accompanied by small reservoirs of stone ground mustard and sweet apple butter.
Heritage pork rack, $26