perks for your palate.
HOW IT WORKS
Feed Love: Power social change with your appetite at these 6 NYC restaurants
By Kat Odell
Yes, posh Midtown gem Betony is one of Manhattan’s top haunts for excellent progressive American cuisine and crystal clear glasses of seasonal milk punch, but the restaurant is also distinguished by a generous program for giving back through annual charity events that benefit organizations like No Kid Hungry. During the summer, Betony hosts its annual Produce Playoff, in which several top chefs and beverage experts gather to prepare a multi-course meal celebrating seasonal ingredients, with ticket proceeds going to the charity.
Recently launched by veteran chef Greg Baxtrom and farmer Ian Rothman, this new spot in Prospect Heights is nothing if not garden-centric. Indoors, plants spill off living walls, while outdoors there’s a lush rear patio that’s home to more than 50 botanicals. Naturally, the cozy, 50-seat eatery’s New American menu embraces seasonal eats, and 25 cents from every meal sold goes to GrowNYC, an organization devoted to making New York greener.
Known for its customizable, wellness-oriented Indian-flavored bowls, Inday debuted a $6 grab-and-go Karma Cup this past February, with the aim of trying to help out those less fortunate. Made with Inday’s take on kitchari soup, the Karma Cup’s impact is simple and true: for every one sold, the fast-casual eatery donates one to Lower East Side homeless center the Bowery Mission. While kitchari is traditionally made from lentils and rice, and is believed to be a health-promoting elixir akin to chicken soup, Inday’s modern version calls for a mix of quinoa, basmati rice, and yellow lentils, plus anti-inflammatory spices.
Animal devotee and hospitality star Ravi DeRossi donates 10 percent of all sales at his new vegan tapas bar to his own animal rights charity, BEASTFoundation. Chef Daphne Cheng’s plates of vegetable charcuterie and caramelized artichoke hearts, not to mention beverage director Ariel Arce’s low-ABV seasonal libations, will only taste that much better when you know that a portion of the proceeds are going to a good cause.
The most curious element of the bar situation at Black Tree in Williamsburg is that co-owner and chef Sandy Dee Hall’s program doesn’t involve any citrus. At all. In effort to embrace seasonality, and with an overall eco-friendly mindset, every drink prepared is made from ingredients sourced from within three hundred miles of the restaurants, which means citrus is a no-go, no matter the season. Beside drinks, Hall offers a weekly changing whole animal menu, which keeps restaurant waste to a minimum and celebrates the protein in its entirety.
Though it came first, this seasonal stalwart in Greenwich Village has for years been eclipsed by little brother Blue Hill at Stone Barns, Dan, David and Laureen Barber’s farm restaurant in Pocantico Hills. But last year, they invited an all-star cast of chefs to the Manhattan location in order to cook for a night or two at their wastED pop-up, a series of tasting menu dinners that required the chefs to prepare meals with ingredients typically considered waste. Chef Dan Barber himself served a burger made from leftover beet juice pulp, and the sandwich was so well-received that it’s now on the Blue Hill bar menu.