Kisa Brings South Korean Roadside Fare to the Lower East Side


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In South Korea, roadside diners that cater to taxi drivers are called kisa sikdang, or “driver’s restaurants,” and serve baekban (homestyle) fare like bibimbap, spicy pork or local, fresh seafood with rice and banchan. Kisa serves most of these as well as bulgogi and spicy squid. The owners, David JoonWoo Yun, Steve JaeWoo Choi and Yong Min Kim, all South Korean natives, are behind C as in Charlie in NoHo. (Taxi drivers prefer rice dishes to soups, they say, because bathroom breaks are rare.) The room’s vintage touches include Korean calendars, wall-mounted fans and a machine that dispenses free coffee. (Opens Saturday)

205 Allen Street (East Houston Street), 646-866-8622,


Hail a tractor to head for the third of Carlos Suarez’s farmhouse-style Italian restaurants, named for his mother and incongruously installed among glass and steel towers. The airy dining room opens to sidewalk seating, and a small retail area and a private dining room are tucked in the back. La Sagra, a new family-style spread of assorted antipasti followed by pasta and dessert, is $39 per person with $1 going to God’s Love We Deliver. Pizzas, including one with spring peas and artichokes, are also new. Much of the produce comes from McEnroe Organic Farm in the Hudson Valley which is co-owned by the Durst Organization, the owner of the building.

825 Third Avenue (50th Street), 212-870-6137,

Bar Primi Penn District

The Madison Square Garden and Manhattan West area, steps from the Moynihan Train Hall, was once a restaurant desert. It is now bustling with dining options, including this uptown edition of the Italian Bowery restaurant from NoHo Hospitality, the chef Andrew Carmellini’s team. It’s in a former warehouse with a thickly planted patio.

349 West 33rd Street, 212-233-6100,

Chica & the Don

This luxurious Flatiron district venue, which feels like a supper club, offers a richly interpreted menu of Latin American food and drinks, featuring dishes like short rib and maduro quesadilla, and fried red snapper in a coconut-tomato sauce. Tropical fruits flavor the drinks. Music and dancing are on the agenda. (Friday)

24 East 21st Street, 646-649-4805,

Panko Pizza

Many pizzaiolos strew a handful of semolina on the pan for a crisp crust that doesn’t stick. At his new pizzeria, Fran Garcia, best known as the owner of Artichoke Basille’s with many locations, coats his crusts with olive oil and dips them in panko for the same effect.

1104 NJ-35 (New Monmouth Road), Middletown Township, N.J., 848-225-3080,

On the Menu

Japanese Wines

Leo Lê has expanded the Momoya wine list to include bottles from Japan.Credit…Mark Higashino

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