The Wayfarer

It’s no secret that it’s hard to find appealing restaurants near Central Park and in Midtown. However, it might be a secret that The Wayfarer is your best option. The swanky, cozy booths and gorgeous bar make the dining room fit for a queen yet appropriate enough for any business meeting. As soon as they deliver the warm rolls and you sink into your seat, you can’t help but think “sold!” Wet your palette with a round of oysters for starters. The sides are also all incredible and served in cute black pans. Maitake Mushrooms with Thyme Jus are worth the $12. The Hand Cut French Fries are perfect and need to be added to any order (yes, it’s ok that you will love their bread and their fries).

The American menu has all the basics and most things you’d crave while the quality of the fish, meats and vegetables is extreme. The Baby Romaine Hearts salad with avocado, caesar dressing and crispy parmesan croutons is the kind of salad you’d expect to see at a steakhouse. The romaine lettuce is chopped perfectly, and the dressing is evenly spread out with no signs of a puddle at the bottom of the plate which is always a ruiner. While you can get tuna tartar anywhere, you aren’t always impressed with it. At many restaurants, they just throw some sweet soy sauce on top of mashed up tuna with a side of avocado. Think about it- they fool you sometimes. The best Big Eye Tuna, which is here, is that which has bigger pieces of tuna so that you can actually taste the fresh seafood and it hasn’t been tainted by any spicy mayo or sauce. It’s simple and has just the right amount of soy and lime dressing.

Big Eye Tuna
For entrees, don’t miss the Grilled Ecuadorian Prawns. These big guys show up any shrimp cocktail you’ve ever had and again are paired with that popular green ingredient: avocado. Add a little cilantro, jalapeno and lime salsa and you’ve got yourself some Mexican influence and a plate full of happiness. It will also keep your waistline happy in between bites of those salty fries. For the carnivore lovers, I’d recommend the Hanger Steak. While it’s only available at lunch in a salad, it’s tender as hell. Secret note: since I had my birthday dinner here for a big group, I had a family style preparation so we shared plates of this beef over pommes puree and bordelaise sauce. The steak medallions are a dream come true and better than some filets I’ve had at local steakhouses. That being said, The Wayfarer birthday dinner blew me away and was the exact treat I wanted.

Since they are located at 57th Street and 6th Avenue, it’s not a busy crowd at dinner time. This makes it ideal for big groups, celebrations and last minute walk-ins. The restaurant is also a great place to drop by before or after visiting the MoMa or Carnegie Hall. If you want a light snack of apps and sides or just some cocktails, there’s something for everyone.