From hosting rousing Housewives reunions to chatting with celebs on his raucous late-night show Watch What Happens Live, Andy Cohen is a very busy man-about-town. But where does the St. Louis native and dad to adorable pup Wacha spend his rare downtime? We checked in with the downtown Manhattan dweller for some insight on his favorite New York City restaurants and bars.
“I love Anfora on 8th Avenue,” says Andy, who likes to wind down at the West Village spot after a long week. From the same owners as nearby Italian hotspot dell’anima, Anfora, which opened in May 2010, is a wine enthusiast’s dream, featuring an extensive list of varietals from around the world. The name references amphorae, the clay vessels used to move and store wine in ancient Greece and Rome, which inspired the Anfora staff to age wines in-house as well. In addition to their spot-on vino selections, Anfora also features a number of beers, innovative cocktails, and a range of charcuterie, sandwiches and cheese.
For a casual bistro meal, Andy loves the “cozy vibe” at the West Village's Café Cluny, which serves incredible egg dishes for breakfast, plus lunch, dinner and weekend brunch. On the dinner menu, creations like baby yellowtail tataki and coconut curry-braised pork steer the menu in a more esoteric direction, while Wagyu steak frites and frisée salad with lardons retain a Francophile culinary identity in the Parisian-esque dining room.
Morandi, a lively trattoria from famed restaurateur Keith McNally (of Minetta Tavern, Balthazar, and more) is another of Andy’s frequent West Village hangouts. “It's fresh Italian food with great energy” he says. The brick-walled dining room is evocative of a rustic Tuscan restaurant—and its expansive size is a rare luxury amid the closet-sized restaurants of the neighborhood. The fried artichokes are a must here, as are the delicious pastas.
The Cubby Hole
After dinner, Andy might head to another of his favorite hangouts, the Cubby Hole, “a fun lesbian bar on West 12th Street” that's open nightly (morningly?) until 4am. Opened in 1994, the eclectically decorated bar (think ceilings festooned with multi-shaped balloons and hanging lights) caters to a wide-ranging clientele not limited to the gay scene. Andy is a regular, and he’s brought a number of friends here, including Ellen Barkin.
Curious about Andy’s other go-to New York food and drink destinations? His 2014 book The Andy Cohen Diaries goes behind the scenes of his glamorous daily life and takes, in his words, “a deep look at a shallow year.” The book humorously explores his packed social and professional schedule and his family dynamic—and also mentions every meal he ate for a year!
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