Gorgeous and sophisticated, Marea couldn’t really be found anywhere other than Central Park South. This ritzy, light-flooded dining room, dressed to the nines with high-gloss Indonesian rosewood, is always filled with movers and shakers. It's hard to beat this scene, but the food has its own appeal. Fish and shellfish are the focus of this ambitious, Italian-leaning carte—quality of ingredients and condition play equal parts in their preparation. Nothing commences a meal here like the crudo (and this kitchen offers around 12 to choose from), but other generously sized antipasti, like grilled octopus with smoked potatoes or Nova Scotia lobster paired with burrata offer comfort and flavor. House-made pastas remain a highlight, as seen in the gnocchetti tossed with tomatoes, shrimp, chilies, and rosemary oil. But if you're craving something different, get the spigola striata—or striped sea bass—served with smoky grilled leeks and tender butter beans. As an homage to this kitchen's creative spirit, desserts like the mascarpone panna cotta are augmented by a cashew tuile, huckleberry mostarda and a scoop of prickly pear sorbet.
- MICHELIN guide inspectors
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