The Beatrice Inn has been around the West Village since the 1920s, morphing from a speakeasy to a neighborhood Italian spot to a star-studded club owned by a Vanity Fair editor to a flat-lining chophouse... until chef Angie Mar, previously of the Spotted Pig, came to save the day and raise the stakes. Her menu leans heavily on large portions of dry-aged steaks and lavish burgers. Don't skip the meat pies, dramatically plated with a marrow-filled bone protruding through flaky crusts. Mar's cooking received critical acclaim (notably by Pete Wells at The New York Times), culminating in her 2016 purchase of the restaurant from the owners who hired her three years prior. We're proud to have named her our 2016 NYC Chef of the Year.
A ngie Mar takes a very disciplined approach to vegetables, but that doesn't mean she's enthusiastic about them. "Just so you know, this is the vegetable of the day," she says, sipping on a glass of green juice through a straw. "I have one of these every morning, and then I eat meat for the rest of the day." That carnivorous mindset is reflected in her cooking at New York City’s historic Beatrice Inn, where the 34-year-old Seattle native has served as executive chef since 2013.
In an era of veggie-forward cooking and meatless burgers -- when Instagrammers glom onto myriad takes on avocado toast, critics gush over Narcissa’s Carrots Wellington, and even the city's reigning prince of pork, David Chang, is selling a plant-based burger -- Mar is an unabashed and uncompromising champion of meat in all its forms. Beef, duck, lamb, rabbit, venison, wild boar -- if it can be butchered, she will prepare it, often in the most creative way possible. Take her headline-grabbing whiskey-aged tomahawk steak, a unique French-inspired dish that you won't find anywhere else in America. Even her branzino comes baked inside a beef-fat pastry. Ask for a salad, and Mar jokingly points you to the tartare. (Hey, it's raw!) You can even have beef for dessert, in the form of Mar's bone marrow creme brulee.
I n January, Mar and her team won the local leg of Cochon555, a high-profile whole-hog cooking contest featuring many of the city's most talented chefs. Her impressive victory, capped with a visually stunning red velvet cake made with pig's blood, set the tone for what she describes as a "go big or go home"-type of year ahead.
Over the summer, Mar partnered with her cousin to buy out the Beatrice's ownership group, which notably included Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter -- effectively turning a restaurant run by power brokers into a small family business. Mar immediately ditched the Bea's stuffy dress code and no-photography policy, outfitted the room with funky artworks, switched the soundtrack to rock and hip-hop, and completely revamped the menu.
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1. The Beatrice Inn 285 W 12th St, New York, NY 10014 (West Village)