Modern cuisine in Midtown's relaxed spot
The Peninsula New York’s newest dining outlet, Clement Restaurant, carries on the Hong Kong-based hotel group’s tradition of restaurants named after hotel executives. This one honors the CEO of Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels (the parent company of The Peninsula), Clement King Man Kwok. Located on the second floor of the hotel, Clement boasts stellar views of Fifth Avenue, thanks to its arched windows.
The design of the New York City restaurant is the first thing you’ll notice. Design firm Yabu Pushelberg broke up Clement into three distinct spaces. In the Book Room, textured, treated paper is artfully stacked on the walls to look like book spines. The Mirror Room’s walls hold reflective surfaces of every shape and size. And the Color Room’s walls are plastered with a 60-foot-long, hand-etched mural. Titled Wild New York, the gold-hued work depicts the city covered in jungle. Each has its own vibe and appeal, but all come together to feel rather residential. Tables don white linens, while the chairs and banquettes are gray — leaving the restaurant with a clean and contemporary look.
But it’s what’s on top of the table that’s really important at Clement. Chef Brandon Kida (formerly of Asiate at Mandarin Oriental, New York) whips up delightfully modern cuisine with a bit of an Asian flair. He takes pride in seasonal ingredients, gathering items from local farmers as well as making trips down to the Union Square Greenmarket. Next to each item on the menu, you’ll see a location in parentheses denoting where the main ingredient is from. The menu changes weekly, but expect dishes like Maine lobster and poached eggs, and quinoa porridge with kale and ginger for breakfast; a burger with spicy mustard and pommes frites, and black sea bass with roasted duck broth and maitake mushrooms for lunch; and fluke with romaine and lemon-chamomile emulsion or lamb with miso, grilled ramps and a rhubarb syrup. For a fun dining experience, try the Sunday Market Brunch, where you can indulge in a three-course meal (a market tasting plate with pastries, your choice of main course and a trio of desserts) while a DJ spins in the dining room.
The servers are knowledgeable and eager to share their favorite dishes. And if you’re looking for a glass of wine, be sure to ask for the sommelier, who can advise you on everything vino-related. For other drinks, head to the other side of Clement for the bar, which pumps lively music that seeps into the dining room. Sit in a butterscotch-colored leather banquette and sip a Sassafras Cobbler (Dickel Rye, simple syrup, lemon juice, sassafras leaves, pickled blueberries and pickled blueberry juice) before indulging in chef Kida’s contemporary cuisine.