Illustration: Clara Kirkpatrick

This past January, our newly installed diner-at-large embarked on a quest to visit as many bars and restaurants as humanly possible in 2022. Twelve months and 457 establishments later, here are the freshest, sauciest, crispiest, and cheesiest things she ate.

Illustration: Clara Kirkpatrick

The Worst Part of restaurants in 2022 was not the threat of COVID. It was Resy. Why do I need to give a host my phone number if I’m trying to sit at the bar as a walk-in?

A beef patty at Kingston Tropical Bakery in the Bronx.

The omakase and a bottle of Matsu no Midori daiginjo sake at Tempura Matsui in Murray Hill.

Affogato Allo Zabaione at Fiaschetteria Pistoia in Alphabet City. Forget amaro. This espresso drink condenses all the best parts of tiramisu into one tiny cup.

The superrich, surprisingly refined chicken-liver agnolotti at Claud in the East Village demands a proper table. Besides, nobody should eat a $200 dinner hunched over a stool.

Lucia Pizza of Avenue X. A slice that people will travel for. The thin crust stands up to classic toppings, like bright vodka sauce that’s even better with pepperoni. Go before tourists hear about it.

Little Gem lettuce and Jimmy Nardello peppers. While we’re at it, I’d be fine if I never again saw steak tartare on a menu.

Illustration: Clara Kirkpatrick

Place des Fêtes in Clinton Hill. It looks like a zillion other wine bars but gets so many details right that it is something else entirely. Start with a glass of draft sherry, then move on to some of the city’s best seafood — a scallop doused in ’nduja butter, say, or slices of raw yellowtail amberjack with grated horseradish and green almonds. And its crispy maitake mushroom is as savory and crunchy as any fried chicken.

Chambers in Tribeca. A legendary list that is as deep and varied as any you’ll find in the city, yet it still offers by-the-glass pours for just $9.

Megruli bread at Oda House on the Upper East Side. Like mixing a white pizza with an extra cheese course.

No, I didn’t go to Carbone. (When I tried to go this summer, I couldn’t get in. I was so annoyed that I didn’t go back.)

1. Torrisi Bar & Restaurant
2. The Grill
3. Sadelle’s
4. The Lobster Club
5. Dirty French

Illustration: Clara Kirkpatrick

The White Zombie at Sunken Harbor Club in Downtown Brooklyn. Not too sweet, extremely potent, and a completely unique take on tiki thanks to the addition of pear brandy.

Koko’s in Williamsburg. We barely knew thee. I loved your nikkei ceviche and natural wine from Japan.

Public Records in Gowanus. An industrial space, an amazing sound system, and a menu that only reinforces the stereotype that vegan cooking is bland and boring.

Jing Fong in Chinatown. Duck in for a pot of tea, some rice rolls, and a bit of serenity.

Tinned fish. Don’t be surprised to pay $7 per anchovy in Manhattan. If you’re lucky, it may come with bread.

Chinese Tuxedo in Chinatown.

Dante in the Seaport. Manhatta in the Financial District. Bar Blondeau in Williamsburg.

Bemelmans Bar. If I’m paying $30 to drink a martini, the crowd needs to be a lot more fun.

Illustration: Clara Kirkpatrick

Syko in Windsor Terrace. A Syrian Korean counter that will instantly dispatch falafel, fattoush, and warm hotteok directly to my front door.

1. Satsuma-orange ice cream with honey and toasted marshmallow at Crown Shy.
2. Sticky toffee pudding from Dame.
3. Pistachio Paris-Brest at Frenchette.

Inaka Asian Cuisine in Prospect Heights. At lunch, $15 buys three very generous rolls of your choosing.

80 percent of restaurants these days have some kind of fancy dip. My favorite was the bessara at Shukette. Fresh and fava-y with plenty of toasted spice.

The Best Reason to Check Out the Tin Building, Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s massive Seaport market and restaurant fantasia: The perfectly executed pain aux raisins. (And, to be honest, the very nice roast beef at the Sandwich & Salad kiosk.)

Steak haché at Le Rock in midtown. It is the ultimate beef patty. No bun required.

The mutton chop at Keens Steakhouse near Herald Square. I ate a lot of meat this year. The king remains undefeated.

Illustration: Clara Kirkpatrick

The most boomer restaurant in New York is Union Square Cafe.
The most Gen X is Roman’s in Fort Greene.
The Four Horsemen is the most millennial …
… While the new wine bar Sauced is the most Gen Z.

A first date: El Pingüino in Greenpoint;
A late-night meal: Blue Ribbon Brasserie in Soho;
Breaking up: Ding-a-Ling in Alphabet City.

1. Two slices from Scarr’s Pizza on Orchard Street.
2. Tacos and kolaches from Yellow Rose in the East Village.
3. Any sandwich from Casa Della Mozzarella in the Bronx.

1. Tea-leaf salad at Rangoon in Crown Heights.
2. Cucumbers “New Yorkese” at Torrisi Bar & Restaurant in Nolita.
3. Salade de poulet at Buvette in the West Village.

The River, the too-cool-for-its-own-good Chinatown bar, where servers deliver $225 orders of Champagne and caviar while wearing designer schoolgirl uniforms in an unappealing shade of brown.

Illustration: Clara Kirkpatrick

A peanut-butter-and-bacon sandwich from S&P, the otherwise excellent lunch counter that replaced Eisenberg’s in the Flatiron District.

Bonnie’s in Williamsburg. Forget the wait list and take the train to Ping’s in Chinatown instead.

Boring new French restaurants.

Fly Heads at Taiwanese Gourmet. It’s a plate of stir-fried chives seasoned with fermented black beans and salted pork, and I would happily eat it every day for the rest of my life.