Haute food, summer in the city
If Central Park is New York's Bois de Boulogne, then Bryant Park is its mini Jardin du Luxembourg. An $18 million renovation restored the 1847 gem's original luster, making it polished enough to host New York's fashion week. The six acres on 42nd Street and Sixth Avenue also feature a pétanque court, a carousel, and free Wi-Fi. And until last May, the biggest draw was classic-movie screenings on the lawn—that is, until Craft restaurant's Tom Colicchio opened an outpost of his 'Wichcraft chainlet. Now the four cheery kiosks are the only reasons we need to pull up a little green chair.
Root beer float Regress in style. A cup of homemade vanilla ice cream comes with a bottle of Boylan's root beer—the perfect accompaniment to a Monday-night screening of The Birds or The Manchurian Candidate.
Slow-roasted pork sandwich The best things are not always the tidiest. The rich, tender meat—spiked with jalapeños and red cabbage slaw— is served on a crusty ciabatta roll. Grab extra napkins.
Peanut butter cream'wich Competition is fierce for these treats—they sell out early. Crunchy peanut-butter cookies surround peanut butter whipped with sugar. At $1 apiece, they're an affordable addiction.
Ham and avocado on baguette Breakfast sandwiches too good to wait until lunch. How about fried egg with bacon, frisée, and Gorgonzola on ciabatta? What's a bagel?
Hot chocolate When there's a chill in the air, the ice cream kiosk turns its thoughts to daily hot chocolate flavors, such as ancho chile and the exquisite bay leaf.
Ice cream'wich The genius of pastry chef Erica Davis is on display in pairings such as chocolate cookies with banana ice cream, peach ice cream with graham cookies, and sundaes topped with toffee sauce.
Black pepper potato chips Life's too short for Lay's when there are thickly sliced spuds crisped in olive oil and spiced with pepper.
Grilled gruyère The classic comfort food has been revamped: Gruyère and caramelized onions on rye, and fontina with black trumpet mushrooms and white-truffle fondue.