SATC’s early seasons glamorized NYC restaurant openings and the PR world surrounding them. But in seasons 1 and 2, they were often based on real restaurants that had fictionalized names, like Balzac (in real life, based on the opening of SoHo’s Balthazar). Cut to season 4, and actual restaurant openings were not only name-checked on the show but fictional versions of their opening parties were recreated on the series. Tao is the most prominent example of a fictionalized restaurant opening that actually happened around the same time. Fans of the show will remember this is where Carrie brings her date Ray King (Craig Bierko), along with Charlotte, Miranda, Samantha and her lesbian artist friend, Maria (Sonia Braga), when she runs into Big and a model companion. A dramatic scene plays out in which Samantha tells Big off for playing with Carrie’s emotions, and is a turning point in the physical relationship between her and Maria (i.e., it gets physical shortly thereafter Samantha’s lionhearted speech). In real life, TAO’s opening was in fact, a big Manhattan event. Opened in a former Vanderbilt Carriage home in fall of 2000, the Pan-Asian clubstaurant was an instant hit and nearly 20 years later, now includes a family of spinoffs that include both a Downtown location and others in Vegas, Miami, LA, and Chicago and siblings like LAVO, Marquee and Bodega Negra.