MICHELIN Guide’s Point Of View
Minimal, industrial and in harmony with the cool neighborhood, this is the kind of classic downtown spot that draws trendy millennials from afar. Seating is either intimate or cramped, and the music is lively or loud, all depending on your mood. Enthusiastic servers add to the room’s energy. Offering six courses for under $80, their prix-fixe menu is renowned not just for its ambition and creativity but also as one of good value. While the menu format may be fixed, dishes change frequently to reflect the young chefs’ wide-ranging talents and contemporary flair. This kitchen really plays it up, presenting textures and ingredients in unusual, but appealing ways. Guinea hen, served in a light vin jaune sauce, is proof that simple can be spectacular. Whipped potato over a smoked date purée that is topped with fried kombu chips is equal parts fun and fantastic. Even dessert shows off a little sass: the elderflower granita with preserved celery, which imparts a dill pickle quality, is exceptional. It's likely you won't recognize any names on Contra's wine list, hyper-focused on natural winemakers. Sip from a similar list and nibble on signature snacks next door at sibling Wildair.