New York City After a year of delays, WD-50, the newest from Wylie Dufresne (an F&W Best New Chef 2001), finally debuted in April, to a room jammed with those curious to try the chef's latest experiments: Wellfleet oysters flattened into marbly, almost translucent sheets (weird-sounding but delicious); tender pork belly paired with razor clams and preserved-lemon gnocchi (212-477-2900). Coming soon(ish): Alain Ducasse and Jeffrey Chodorow's restaurant Mix; Union Square Cafe chef Dan Silverman's new restaurant in the landmark Lever House; and offshoots of Napa's The French Laundry and Beverly Hills' Ginza Sushi-Ko in the AOL Time Warner Center.
San Francisco Paul Zuest, manager of Campton Place, went all the way to Switzerland to find a replacement for chef Laurent Manrique, who was poached by Aqua after Michael Mina left. The new chef, 27-year-old Daniel Humm, comes from the Michelin-starred Zum Gupf in Rehetobel, Switzerland (415-955-5555). Town Hall, the new SoMa restaurant from Postrio chefs Mitchell and Steven Rosenthal, is slated to open in September.
Chicago Miae Lim's Japonais, the third in a group that includes the spectacularly successful Ohba and Mirai, is scheduled to open this month in the defunct Montgomery Ward's landmark headquarters. More news: The Blackbird team is opening a wine bar called Avec this summer, with a small-plates Mediterranean menu from longtime Blackbird sous-chef Koren Grievson.