Everywhere You Need to Eat in NYC Right Now
The gist: Casa Ora’s story is what NYC dreams are made of: Ivo Diaz, a hospitality industry veteran of over 18 years (The Nomad Hotel, Eleven Madison Park, One Hotel Brooklyn Bridge) opens his own restaurant. He based the menu off childhood Venezulean dishes he loved and appointed his mother, Isbelis Diaz, as executive chef, and his partner, Rachel Diaz Pirard, as pastry chef. A portion of proceeds go to Venezulean families seeking asylum, and the restaurant remains a neighborhood stalwart. The restaurant’s space also recently went through an elegant renovation with seating capabilities now at nearly 85 guests including outdoor dining with heaters.
The food: Offerings include varieties of arepitas like Shredded Beef & Cheddar; shredded pork; Chicken Salad & Queso Blanco; and Black Bean with Avocado. Table snacks and appetizers include Bollitos Pelones with spicy tomato sauce; Hallaca; Tequeños; Mandocas; Empanadas; Beef Tongue with honey pickled onion; and Ceviche with grapefruit, orange, papaya, ginger, and pickled red onion. Entrees include Scallops with corn dumplings; Pabellon with Sofrito, and refried rice & beans; and Charcoal- Seared Octopus with English peas and a chimichurri vinaigrette. A creative cocktail menu provides plenty of pairing options with signature drinks like the Cantinero (dark and white rum, passion fruit) and Purple Banana (tequila, blue pea tea, banana)