Daughters 16th Birthday in NYC
The fried chicken meal at momofuku ssam bar, you'll have a reservation so no wait, its a "trendy" restaurant, and the meal will be both familiar yet with interesting sides and flavors:
Their milk bar has a birthday cake but the smallest size would still be a lot for 4-6people, but you could always just have the leftover cake for breakfast too ;)
How about this?
Have dinner at Lombardi's, then walk down a block or so and end the evening with a birthday "cake" from Eileen's.
It's a win-win.
You get to sample two of NYC's iconic food items -- pizza and cheesecake -- and while differing minds can debate whether Lombadi's or Eilieen's represents the best of either category, no one will really be all that upset eating at either location for a slice of pie and cake, respectively.
Rural Texas here, but for what it's worth, my two daughters loved food that was unique and couldn't be had back home. At that age their favorite place was Le Bernardin. Rather formal, but they was part of the appeal to them -- watching the "service ballet" as one of them put it. But your daughter needs to be a somewhat adventurous eater. I mention this just to point out that while you no doubt know your child, you might be surprised how they react to formal. Now when I come to town, I have to take the youngest one (who lives in NYC now) to LB or she complains that I'm not doing my job!! Go figure.
What type of food does your daughter like? How many people and what kind of atmosphere besides "cool"?
Are there any places you have been before that you like?
Would you prefer a small plates format, a three course meal etc?
Just came back from NYC and the "coolest" place I ate while I was there was ABC Cocina. Felt very trendy and scene like. Didn't have dessert so I can't speak to that.
Any price point?
We're from rural Pennsylvania so looking for some place as you suggested trendy and unusual. Nothing too formal and there will be four to six in our group. No price point. My Daughter just likes the basics. She would be able to find something on the menu. Not too picky. We''ll be there for the weekend of March 7th. Thanks for your help.
When you say basics do you mean plainer food no sauces? Or do you mean American food, no "ethnic"?
I also live in rural PA, so I am always looking for cuisine I can't get. Things like good mexican, Chinese, dim sum, middle Eastern, etc. I am still having a hard te thinking of something just based on trendy.
Essex in the Lower East side was a really trendy fun brunch. Haven't been for dinner.
Traif in Brooklyn was trendy an delicious. Amazing food mostly in small plates style.
I don't know if I would call either "basics" by PA standards.