106 East 57th Street (212-752-7470)
Soup: Chilled cantaloupe soup with lime, honey, and fromage blanc sorbet, $9
Flavor: Sauternes enhances the cantaloupe’s natural sweetness, while lime and yogurty sorbet supply contrasting tartness. Floating balls of melon add texture.
Secret Ingredient: Ginger.
Chill Factor: Take it from Indian cuisine—a little spiciness, courtesy of the ginger, actually helps keep your temperature down.
davidburke & donatella
106 133 East 61st Street (212-813-2121)
Soup: Cherry-rhubarb soup, $10
Flavor: Floating fresh cherries coated with coconut, then fried, have the sweet, chemical taste of bar fruit, and there’s no sign of rhubarb’s tang.
Secret Ingredient: Melted cherry Life Savers.
Chill Factor: Both too sweet and too leaden—like cloying cough medicine.
509 East 6th Street (212-813-2121)
Soup: Summer gazpacho with yellow-pepper sorbet, $10
Flavor: As garlicky and oily as Chef Boyardee pasta sauce, with an orange color to match.
Secret Ingredient: Red-wine vinegar.
Chill Factor: Too few vegetables plus too much grease equals soup that’s far too heavy.
39 Downing Street (212-255-1790)
Soup: Chilled hibiscus soup with vanilla ice cream, $9
Flavor: Subtly floral, with a sweetness that’s tempered by freshly picked blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries.
Secret Ingredient: Dried hibiscus leaves.
Chill Factor: Fresh mint and orange zest make this as bracing as iced tea.
61 West 62nd Street (212-977-7700)
Soup: Chilled avocado-cream soup with different garnish weekly, $8
Flavor: Velvety, rich avocados taste like liquid guacamole, and a healthy helping of jalapeños adds plenty of kick.
Secret Ingredient: Mint and cilantro leaves.
Chill Factor: Garnishes like pomegranate sorbet lighten the soup effectively.
475 West Broadway (212-277-4300)
Soup: Chilled green-grape gazpacho with iced red grapes and toasted almonds, $7
Flavor: Grapes and tomatillos pop on the palate, and are quickly mellowed by almond milk.
Secret Ingredient: Almond milk.
Chill Factor: The acidity of the fruit lends a chilling tartness, and cucumber’s cooling properties are legendary.