Jean Georges, 1 Central Park West, New York, NY 10023
Ambiance: Bright, understated (despite its setting in the glitzy Trump International Hotel and Tower) and devoid of typical haute restaurant starchiness.
What to Order: Egg Caviar (pictured); Duck Breast Topped with Cracked Jordan Almonds.
Who Comes Here: Well-heeled guests of the hotel or visitors to nearby Lincoln Center. Magic Johnson and Rick Perry have stopped by in recent months. Also, Donald Trump.
Sweet Tooth: The Dessert Flight, if you can’t pick just one. Otherwise the Caramelized Pineapple, Carrot Cake, and Molasses.
Bouley, 163 Duane St., New York, NY 10013
What to Order: Chicken en Cocotte (pictured); Chatham Codfish, Line Caught with Fricasse of Potato.
Who Comes Here: Couples toasting an engagement or anniversary. Finance titans looking to escape the not-too-distant thrum of Wall Street.
Sweet Tooth: Hot Valrhona Chocolate Soufflé with White Coffee Cloud and Chocolate Sorbet.
La Grenouille, 3 East 52nd St., New York, NY 10022
What to Order: The Pike Quenelles Lyonnaise have been on the menu since 1962, and for good reason.
Who Comes Here: Ladies who lunch and uptown blueblood couples who dinner. Media bigwigs like Tina Brown, Barbara Walters and Katie Couric.
Sweet Tooth: Sink into any of the soufflés, which are routinely named the best in New York.
Daniel, 60 East 65th St., New York, NY 10065
What to Order: Four Braised Short Ribs in Red Wine with Cauliflower Gratin, Seared Rib Eye with Paprika Pommes Duchesse and Chanterelles (pictured); Slow Baked Black Sea Bass with Syrah Sauce.
Who Comes Here: Park and 5th Avenue royalty. Businessmen celebrating a closed deal. President Obama has had multiple fundraisers here (Boulud is a fan).
Sweet Tooth: The Manjari Dacquoise is a must.