These days, it seems like a restaurant is only deemed worthy of a visit if the food is Instagrammable. While We Were Young, a tiny jewel box of a restaurant in N.Y.C.'s West Village, doubles down on this theory with pastel interiors and picturesque dishes that are almost too pretty to eat ("almost" being the operative word). The charming, brightly lit space nods to owner Bradford Dunigan's favorite surf spots: the bar is designed to resemble a wave in his hometown of Fort Lauderdale, Fla. and the millennial pink velvet couches are the same color as the sand in Eleuthera, an island in the Bahamas. Thankfully, in this particular case, expectation meets reality—the menu does not disappoint.
WHAT TO EAT
Start with the burrata, served with avocado, basil, and grapefruit slices, and generously drizzled with wildflower honey and follow with house made garganelli pasta with pesto. Make sure to order one of the six house cocktails—the kale margarita is a highlight—and save room for the soft serve matcha ice cream as your grand finale. Oh, and the mini bags of gummy bears that come with the bill.
WHEN TO GO
While We Were Young is open Sunday from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m., Monday and Tuesday from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., Wednesday from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Thursday through Saturday from 12 pm. to 1 a.m. Go on a weeknight circa 7 p.m. for optimal people watching (and, let's face it, lighting for your inevitable 'grams).
WHAT TO WEAR
Take a cue from the blogger clientele and wear bright colors, a cool bag, and oversize sunglasses. Steer clear of pink or risk clashing with the velvet couches.
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While We Were Young, 183 W. 10th St., 917-675-6272; whilewewereyoungnyc.com