Published June 2013 on NewYork.com
Don’t be fooled by the “Authentic Southern and Cajun Cookin'” callout on Acme’s bold blue awning — it’s a leftover from the restaurant that previously occupied this space. In early 2012, Danish chef Mads Refslund, a co-founder of Noma (the Copenhagen restaurant that’s regularly hailed as the best in the world), moved in and transformed it into a New American/New Nordic brasserie. The place is so popular that diners vie for spots at the narrow counter that lines the entryway and the marble bar, which winds wind through the dining room and serves fancy cocktails like the Fair Lady (Aperol, gin, lemon, St-Germain, honey, orange bitters and Champagne). Refslund’s business partners are masters at launching restaurants that capture the spirit of cool New York. At Acme, they’ve combined bistro-style tables with a black and white checkerboard ceiling, mellow lighting and mirrors that reflect the pretty people who gather here. Though the seasonal menu can seem a bit mysterious (pot-roasted cauliflower, pine, cured egg yolk, for example, or Maine scallops, sunchoke, chestnut, apple) you can be sure that the dishes that come out of the kitchen will be creative and well-considered. There’s also a downstairs lounge (open on Thurs-Sat) with a strict door policy. Even if you just dropped $200 on a meal, you’ll need to be dressed in your New York best and prepared to woo the doorman.