If at first you don’t succeed, pick yourself up and try again. That’s time-honoured advice handed down from generation to generation, and we should be thankful that Chef Matthew Lightner follows it. If he didn’t, we wouldn’t have the delights of New York’s Atera to enjoy. Atera restaurant was born from the ashes of Lightner’s failed Compose restaurant; he got it up and running, and then handed it off to current executive chef Ronny Emberg. It’s been going from strength to strength ever since.
Atera is a restaurant with a concept. It’s based around the idea of a ‘sensory kitchen,’ where the food shouldn’t only taste great but also appeal to sight, smell and touch. To attain the objective of pleasing all of our senses, Emberg sources the finest in seasonal ingredients and matches them based on their texture and appearance. Expect green and bright shades on your dish if you visit during summer months, and darker hues if you’re looking for something to lift the spirits on a winter’s evening.
Because the menu changes completely depending on the nature and shade of the available ingredients, it’s hard to make specific meal recommendations. Despite that, diners should take confidence from the fact that Atera was awarded two Michelin stars because of the quality and consistency of its output. Their food is best sampled on the $285 per-head tasting menu. Adding the wine flight to your experience will cost a further $175. It’s far from cheap – but event dining never is.
Michelin Stars: 2
Address: 77 Worth Street
For a list of the very best eateries in town, check out our guide to all the Michelin star restaurants in New York.