UPPER WEST SIDE — A sizable crop of newbies will join longtime neighborhood eateries at the annual New Taste of the Upper West Side, with more than 80 chefs converging for the two-night food fest.
The event, held in the O'Shea complex yard on West 77th Street, offers an all-you-can-eat approach for those who purchase tickets. New entries this year include everything from gourmet mustard and single-origin chocolate to lamb sausage.
The French mustard purveyor Maille, which moved onto Columbus Avenue this past December with black truffle and champagne-spiked mustards, will man a booth on Friday night.
The upscale DIY chocolate shop Voila, which also opened in December, will showcase its creations for the first time at the festival.
DNAinfo has rounded up all the New Taste first timers this year.
Cibo e Vino
The northern Mediterranean and Italian restaurant is showcasing its food for the first time at the festival. Cibo e Vino opened in the space formerly occupied by Georgia's on Broadway at West 84th Street.
Ella Kitchen & Bar
The restaurant opened on Columbus Avenue between West 71st and 72nd streets this spring in the space formerly occupied by Cafe Ronda. Ella serves "New American" tapas and small plates.
Tiny Treats Cafe
Georgia Stamoulis, the former owners of Georgia's, and pastry chef Aliou Hanes opened a new bakery this year focusing on fresh baked breads and pastries, which they'll share at the festival.
The gourmet mustard shop opened in December with dozens of different mustards for sale.
The Milling Room
The owners of Corvo Bianco reopened their restaurant under a new name this past fall, with a new focus on American cuisine rather than Mediterranean. The Milling Room is joining New Taste for the first time this year with new chef Scott Bryan, who replaced Elizabeth Falkner.
Since West 72nd Street restaurant hasn't yet arrived after reportedly planning to open this February, festival-goers will get an exclusive first taste this weekend. The Ribbon is opening in a large space that used to be occupied by the longtime spot Sambuca.
Lincoln Square Steak
The restaurant proclaimed it was filling an unmet need by bringing a steakhouse to the neighborhood. The eatery opened in January in the space formerly occupied by Loi.
Communal Oven & Earth - James Muir
The health focused farm-to-table spot on West 72nd Street opened in April 2014 and is debuting for the first time at New Taste.
Voila Chocolat is a new make-your-own chocolate spot on West 79th Street that prides itself on the quality of its chocolate and ingredients. The shop will be offering samples at the festival.
Chef Paulo Cortes of Bustan Restaurant
Cortes took over as executive chef of this Middle Eastern newcomer in January. He's showing off his skills at the festival by serving grilled Merguez and homemade Colorado lamb sausage over chickpea and spinach stew.
Chef John Stevenson of Tavern on the Green
Tavern on the Green and its chef, Katy Sparks, parted ways soon after the Central Park restaurant reopened. Jeremiah Tower briefly took over, and now John Stevenson, most recently from Russ & Daughters, has been appointed to the top. He'll present food from the Central Park spot on Saturday.
For a full list of participating chefs and restaurants, go here.