Not Your Bros Bottle Service
A new bespoke bottle program at Nubeluz serves custom-made cocktails made just for you.
Zaytinya, one of my favorite new restaurants to open this year, is now launching outdoor dining, a lovely Champagne Brunch, and a new bottle service program upstairs at Nubeluz, so I thought I’d remind you to go as soon as you are able.
If you’re not familiar with Zaytinya, it’s located in the new Ritz-Carlton Nomad, and it’s the first NYC location of José Andés’ 20-year old Washington, DC restaurant devoted to the Mediterranean cuisines of Greece, Lebanon, and Turkey.
Twenty years ago, José developed the concept for the restaurant with the vision and guidance Aglaia Kremezi, a brilliant food writer, cook, and journalist; sort of the Julia Child of Greek food. At the time, José traveled to Kea, the beautiful island in the Aegean Sea where she lives, to meet her and to learn from her so that the recipes at Zaytinya would be truly authentic. The two spent weeks together cooking where José wrote down everything she taught him, in particular how to prepare Dolmades and learned to always always roll phyllo by hand, and so much more.
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Zaytinya’s Concept Chef Michael Costa, who has been with the team for 11 years, still travels to her cooking school to work on recipes with her, and they have a regular call to go over menus and talk about food and what she’s cooking.
There’s so much on this menu to love; take the (bottomless) baskets of fresh puffy ballon pitas to start: oval in shape, like warm throw pillows, they are perfect vehicles for bowls of the dill-forward Tzatsiki, and Hommus Ma Ma Lahm with spiced ground lamb, pine nuts, house-pickled vegetables, and mint.
Mezze are magnificent and built to share; must-haves include the Crispy Brussels Afella—fried frilly sprouts and leaves with coriander seed, barberries, and garlic yogurt, and the Cauliflower Tiganites—crispy florets topped with herbed tahini, pine nuts, capers, and subtle Hawayej spice. Be sure to also have a house-baked pide (sort of like the Georgian Khachapuri); my favorite is the Za’atar Pide, topped with a soft egg, sesame seeds, and melted kasar cheese. The kebab platter is another no-brainer because it includes all the greatest hits: lamb, kofte, chicken and adana kebabs served with tomato, onion and garlic toum. For dessert, don’t miss the extraordinary Greek yogurt with apricot.
After dinner, you must go up to Nubeluz, José’s sky-high, glass-enclosed cocktail lounge 50 stories atop The Ritz, where you will be awed by the the city from above, drinking stunning cocktails within arm’s reach of Empire State Building lit up against the night sky. It’s one of the most dazzling views of the city I’ve ever seen, and the space is sumptuous, inviting, and luxurious—truly special.
At Nubeluz, they’ve introduced a new way to level up bottle service with a "Send Your Bottle Back" program. Now, I know bottle service is typically associated with investment bankers, bros, and crowded clubs, but at Nubeluz things are done a little differently. Your bottle is just the beginning; it becomes the base of custom craft cocktails, tailor-made to your taste, with both spirit-forward and spirit free selections.
Here’s how it works: You pick from a collection of vodkas, gins, whiskeys, rums, agave spirits, brandies, or spirit-free bottles. When you opt to Send Your Bottle Back, the bar team will create cocktails based on your preferences. So, let’s say you choose a bottle of Clase Azul Reposado Tequila, you and your server will have a little chat. You can opt for the bartender to create something familiar, like a custom Margarita, or if you're feeling more adventurous suggest a Tequila Old Fashioned. If you’re going spirit-free with a bottle like Seedlip Grove the team would create custom cocktails based on your taste profile preferences.
This personalized service comes complete with elevated touches, high end mixers, sodas and garnishes. It is $75 per person (plus cost of the bottle).
Sounds fun right? Gather your people, or take that special someone, have a great time and let me know what you think!!!