MidAtlantic chef-owner Daniel Stern’s second new restaurant, R2L, is preparing to open its doors (daringly!) during Restaurant Week, serving a $35 Restaurant Week menu and, perhaps, Stern told us, a limited “preview” menu. The striking new spot, which we visited to photograph the other day, is perched on the 37th floor of Liberty Two and features spectacular wraparound views of the city. It’s unique in that it offers the only option to dine and cocktail at this height that is open to the public (XIX is not as high, the Pyramid Club is private and Ralph’s, the 43rd floor cafe in the Comcast Center, offers just as spectacular of a view, but is only open to employees).
Stern hasn’t yet released a menu, but he promises “creative American with updated classics” and perhaps some revamps of signature dishes from Gayle and Rae, his previous restaurants, which are now closed. If the Restaurant Week menu is any indication, you’ll be seeing the Gayle salad, a version of Stern’s beloved veal stew that appeared at Rae and his Mom’s sour cream and walnut apple pie, which was also on the Gayle menu.
The wine program, which sommelier Ryan Davis tells us is roughly 200 bottles deep, will offer a rare option: the entire list will also be sold by the half bottle. That includes everything from a $35 bottle of Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc from California to a $1775 bottle of 1996 Chateau Petrus. What will they do with the other half? Davis says he’ll manage to work the other half into tasting menus or sell it by the glass, but if it’s open longer than a day and it doesn’t sell, “it goes to the kitchen.” Lucky kitchen.
Click through to see photos of the restaurant and the amazing views.
R2L, Liberty Two, 50 S. 16th St., 37th Floor; (215) 564-5337