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The 25 Most Anticipated Openings of 2014

By Zagat Staff
January 2, 2014
Photo by: Jason Varney

New year, new restaurants: 2014 is shaping up to be another 12 months filled with exciting new openings from NYC to Las Vegas and Seattle. Wondering where to dine in the New Year? Here's your checklist. 

  • San Francisco: The Progress

    If you asked Santa for a reservation at State Bird Provisions, get excited that the team behind the perpetually packed hot spot is working on a bigger restaurant for 2014. It's just a few doors down from the Bird at 1525 Fillmore Street (in a 100-year-old building that once held the Progress Theatre), doubling your chances to eat Stuart Brioza and Nicole Krasinski's incredible food. Announced back in 2012, the couple are hoping to open in the first quarter of the new year.

  • Los Angeles: POT

    Roy Choi’s new POT restaurant will open any day now at The Line Hotel in Koreatown. Choi, who is overseeing all food and beverage at the new hotel, has been working on the menu in his test kitchen, but look for hot pots, blood soups and Korean BBQ as only Papi can do.

  • NYC: Danny Meyer Project in King and Grove Hotel

    Danny Meyer has partnered with the King and Grove Hotel (pictured) for what is sure to be one of 2014's hottest tables, a new restaurant in the Murray Hill location from Maialino chef Nick Anderer. The King and Grove brand might sound familiar - the brand's Brooklyn property houses Paul Liebrandt's The Elm, widely respected as one of the most ambitious openings in 2013. Details are scarce about what the eatery will feature (and no name has been released), but it will be open for breakfast and serve through late-night hours, with Meyer's Union Square Hospitality Group handling all food and beverage at the hotel. This looks set to open in summer.

  • Photo by: Jason Varney

    Washington, DC: China Chilcano

    News broke in October that José Andrés would open a new place in Penn Quarter tentatively called China Chilcano. The Peruvian-Chinese mash-up is slated to open this spring on the same block as Jaleo and will highlight the Chifa cuisine of Peru, serving dishes like fried rice, dumplings and ceviches.

  • Chicago: Tony Mantuano Project

    The yet-to-be-named restaurant in the former Fulton’s on the River space (315 N. LaSalle Blvd.) will take the form of a casual, social dining hall. It will serve rustic American fare along the lines of whole-roasted chicken, whole-roasted fish and large cuts of beef. The restaurant will also feature craft beer, classic cocktails and wine in the scenic space that overlooks the Chicago River. The restaurant is inspired by Mantuano’s recent travels to London, where the chef dined at Roast, a British restaurant that sources ingredients from Borough Market.

  • Philadelphia: Lo Spiedo

    Philadelphia star chef Marc Vetri and partners are following up two launches in 2013 (Pizzeria Vetri and Osteria Moorestown) with Lo Spiedo, a 150-seat restaurant with a patio and full bar. Located in a former guard house just inside the Navy Yard office park, Lo Spiedo will be a relaxed, casual eatery serving a menu of sandwiches, rotisserie and pasta to nearby office workers and to sports fans - the sports complex where the Eagles, Phillies, Sixers and Flyers all play is just a stone's throw away. Look for it in late spring.

  • Las Vegas: Giada's

    Food Network megalebrity Giada De Laurentiis is opening her very first restaurant ever in a gigantic space formerly known as the Gansevoort Las Vegas (new hotel name TBD) at some point in 2014. So far we know it will serve vaguely "Roman-inspired" cuisine with "Californian" touches, and feature an antipasto station and a partially open kitchen. While the first projections promised a spring opening, at this point that's a bit optimistic. Look for it this summer.

  • Boston: Alden & Harlow 

    Since leaving Russell House Tavern, chef Michael Scelfo has been hard at work prepping Alden & Harlow, his new venture moving into the space that formerly housed Harvard Square's Casablanca. He's chatted a bit about the concept with Boston magazine, suggesting un-fussy, vegetable- and produce-heavy plates for sharing. It will be akin to some of Scelfo's home cooking - and if the "test kitchen" teaser photos he posts often to his Instagram account (@mscelfo) are any indication, we will be very pleased to be his dinner guest. 

  • Denver: Stoic & Genuine

    Between nabbing the James Beard Award for Best Chef Southwest and making it into the finals on Top Chef Masters, Jennifer Jasinski has had a banner year - one she capped off with the announcement that she and partner Beth Gruitch would be opening their fourth restaurant at Union Station in the summer of 2014 (just a few blocks from the Larimer Square trifecta formed by Bistro Vendôme, Rioja and Euclid Hall). Of the still-evolving plans for what they’re now calling Stoic & Genuine (rather than S&G Fish as originally planned), Gruitch says that Jasinski was in New York with her chef-husband Max Mackissock and chef de cuisine Jorel Pierce “exploring concepts for the space we were considering when the idea of fresh seafood was broached. We thought there was a hole in the Denver market that we could fill by combining all the things we wanted in a seafood restaurant.”

    In addition to New England-style classics like fried-clam rolls and lobster platters, as well as market-driven fish dishes galore, there will be a very special raw bar. Specifically, it will be a granita bar, featuring ice blocks for flavoring and shaving into oyster mignonettes on the one hand, savory and fruity cocktails on the other. Speaking of libations, grower champagnes play a key role on the planned wine list.

    A rising star in his own right, Pierce will man the open kitchen of the 60-seater, flanked by a patio with room for 40 additional guests. (Sous chef Josh Prater is stepping into his spot at Euclid Hall.)

  • San Francisco: Monsieur Benjamin

    Drawing upon his classical culinary training, Benu chef-owner Corey Lee will open a modern French bistro at 451 Gough Street in Hayes Valley next spring. Jason Berthold, formerly of RN74, will be the chef of the restaurant, which will seat around 100 diners between indoor and outdoor spaces. Amazingly, Lee's not stopping with this new affair - he's also in the early stages of working on a Korean barbecue place.

  • Los Angeles: LA Chapter

    Downtown’s new Ace Hotel opens on January 6, with a big concert in the building's historic theater on February 14. The hotel's restaurant is still unconfirmed, but the rumor is that it will be called LA Chapter and will be run by the team from Brooklyn's Five Leaves. 

  • Washington, DC: Fiola Mare

    Chef Fabio Trabocchi is expected to open the much-anticipated Fiola Mare at the Washington Harbour in Georgetown on January 27. The chef-owner of Fiola and Casa Luca plans to serve the freshest fish - simply prepared and with a side order of water views. 

  • Chicago: Promontory

    The team from Longman & Eagle venture south with another nose-to-tail restaurant in Hyde Park. Promontory, named after Promontory Point, is a joint music venue and hearth-driven restaurant with food by chef Jared Wentworth. The team is currently in the process of renovating the historic Piccadilly Theater (1443 E. Hyde Park Blvd.), which was built in 1963 and housed a 3,000-seat cinema.

  • Houston: Coltivare

    The long-delayed new Italian-American from Revival Market's Morgan Weber and Ryan Pera has been hosting preview dinners at Revival since spring, but the doors haven't quite opened yet. When they do, expect a casual ambiance and an array of Italian dishes including pizzas. 

  • Atlanta: St. Cecilia

    Hot off the 2013 opening and quick acclaim of King + Duke (which itself followed the template set by 2012 hot spot The Optimist), restaurateur Ford Fry opens his fifth restaurant St. Cecilia in early 2014. Executive chef Brian Horn, a vet of all of Fry's other restaurants, pulls from Northern Italian traditions to focus on lighter pasta dishes, seafood and seasonally inspired dishes; Fry's go-to drink director Lara Creasy delivers the libations, and Chrysta Poulos handles pastries and breads.

  • Photo by: Rebecca Fondren

    Austin: St. Philip

    This summer the Uchi and Uchiko team is branching out from upscale Japanese-inspired cuisine to open the casual neighborhood restaurant St. Philip in Sunset Valley. The restaurant will feature pizza, sandwiches, seasonal shared plates and baked goods for dine-in or takeout. Philip Speer, the team’s executive pastry chef and director of culinary operations, is in charge of the project; he says the restaurant is named not after himself, but after the patron saint of pastry chefs and bakers.

  • San Diego: Juniper & Ivy

    Not a whole lot is known about chef Richard Blais' first San Diego restaurant other than that its menu will straddle the line between gastropub and fine dining, and Blais describes the food as "left-coast cookery." It will open on the edge of SD's Little Italy neighborhood so it wouldn't be a stretch to expect some homemade pastas as well. In terms of the space, the 90-year-old building that will house it will eventually be fit for 200 or so diners and will feature a private dining room, a central bar and a two-story wine wall. Look for it in February.

  • Philadelphia: Volver

    Set to open soon - the original target date was October 2013 - is Jose Garces' next venture, Volver. The name means "to return," and it signals a return to the stove for the Philadelphia-based Iron Chef. Located on the Avenue of the Arts in the Kimmel Center, the center of the 30-seat dining room will be a show kitchen where Garces himself will cook a tasting menu several nights each month (Chifa alum Natalie Maronski will take over when he's not there). Surrounding the main dining room will be a 45-seat champagne lounge serving lighter fare.

  • Boston: La Brasa

    Chopped winner Daniel Bojorquez is about to have a bit more free time - though not for long. Sel de la Terre, where Bojorquez has been chef de cuisine, closes on January 1, but reps for owner Frank McClelland's New France LLC have already told us that the company "is currently developing new concepts." And that includes the Bojorquez-helmed La Brasa, a Peruvian chicken restaurant slated to open in East Somerville in March, according to a rep. Renderings, like the interior seen here, are hosted on the website of RODE Architects. 

  • NYC: Untitled Asian-Mexican From Acme Crew

    Jean-Marc Houmard and Hui Chi Lee from perennial hot spot Indochine will work with their partner from Acme (pictured) Jon Neidich to bring their brand of downtown chic to a new Mexican-Asian spot on Essex Street. The two-level space used to house The Laugh Factory, and the unnamed venue will feature a bar downstairs, which seems to mirror the successful model of their bi-level New Nordic spot on Great Jones Street. These guys know how to attract buzz without any major bells and whistles, so stay tuned for what we predict will be a quiet launch this spring.

  • Miami: Touché Restaurant and Lounge

    From lovably wackadoo former Top Chef star Carla Pellegrino comes a new spot called Touché Restaurant & Lounge that will open on the rooftop of a new $40 million, 24-hour dayclub called E11even. While menu details are scarce, you can expect American cuisine in a fine-dining setting in a giant, nearly-7,000-sq.-ft. space. The restaurant is expected to open in February.  

  • Seattle: Unnamed Capitol Hill Project From Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi

    Husband-and-wife duo Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi (Joule, Revel) are planning a new project in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood that will house four concepts under one roof. The anchor and the largest space will be the Korean BBQ restaurant with a number of tabletop grills. There will be a noodle stand, focusing on rotating, fresh, housemade noodles as well as the ice cream window, specializing in frozen custard and parfait. There will be a separate space for the bar featuring rare, new and unusual beer. Look for it in early summer 2014.

  • Portland: Nonna

    Opening any day now, restaurateur Dayna McErlean's Nonna will debut next to her fine-dining spot, D.O.C., in Concordia on one of PDX's hottest restaurant corners (home to Beast, Expatriate and Autentica among others). Not much is known about the concept other than that it will feature Italian-slanted items (we're assuming a more-casual Italian menu as a complement to D.O.C.) and that it will feature a new horseshoe bar surrounded by tables on each side.

  • Nashville: Prima

    Restaurateur Miranda Whitcomb Pontes (Burger Up) will partner up with chef Sal Avila to open Prima, a fine-dining restaurant in The Gulch, which will be housed on the ground floor of the Terrazzo condo and retail development on Division Street. Pontes and entrepreneur Jim Lewis have teamed up to create new restaurant group, Community Hospitality LLC, and Prima will be the first venture under the new company. Chef Sal Avila describes the menu as "simple, controlled, refined and farmer-defined." Look for it in the next few months.

    Pictured: Miranda Whitcomb Pontes

  • Dallas: Knife Steakhouse

    Top Chef alum John Tesar just announced this week he'll be opening Knife Steakhouse inside Hotel Palomar (Kimpton Group) in spring of 2014. Menu details are scarce, but Tesar is determined to give Dallas a truly great modern steakhouse (after complaining that there aren't any around).

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