Where to Go in NYC When You Can't Get Into Ko or Rusty Knot
Some nights you think you're the coolest person in New York City because you scored a seat at David Chang's Ko (the reservation site just went live but is fraught with problems) and discovered your new favorite dish (that would be shaved foie gras with lychees and pine nut brittle). And then you go to the Rusty Knot, that new Spotted Pig bar, which has the coolest nautical decor (including a mini ocean liner that lights up!), great tiki drinks like an addictive spicy colada, and a crowd of the kind of people who only go by one name. But then the next night you can't get anywhere near Ko, and the Rusty Knot resembles an Apple store moments before the iPhone goes on sale. When that happens, here's where you should go: Momofuku Ssäm Bar's new wine bar (a.k.a. Momofuku Ssäm Bar after 11 p.m.). Superstar GM Cory Lane has found 50 bottles of wine and sake under 50 bucks that he'll serve only late night at Ssäm (he describes them as "eclectic, awesome and affordable") like the 2004 Oremus Mandolás Tokaji Furmint. Sundays through Wednesdays, the Ssäm kitchen will switch from regular dinner service to a special light snack/small plates menu designed specifically to go with the 50-under-50 list. Look for a lot of those small plates to feature pork, like house-cured Crossabaw lardo.