Justin Aronoff has spent one-tenth of his life waiting for his first restaurant to open. The 25-year-old took over the premises at 1496 Northern Blvd. in Manhasset in 2017 and, since then, it’s been two-and-a-half years of renovation, inspection, permitting and delays.
But on July 9, BLVD25 opened for business, its sleek, gray-and-white décor erasing any memories of Nick & Pedro’s, which occupied this Miracle Mile address from 2001 to 2015.
Aronoff has had plenty of work to do in the interim. He is also the owner of Center Cuts, the Roslyn Heights butcher-caterer he opened (with former partner Doug Cohen) in 2014. On a recent evening at the restaurant, he had his hands full just keeping up with congratulations from regular butcher-shop customers.
For general manager, Aronoff turned to an old friend, Ryan Weber, who cut his fine-dining teeth at Nougatine and Mercer Kitchen, two of Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Manhattan restaurants. The kitchen at BLVD25 is run by veteran Long Island chef John Brill, whose resume includes the Olde Trading Post Tavern in New Hyde Park, Ayhan's Fish on Main in Port Washington, Jack Halyards in Oyster Bay, Four Food Studio & Cocktail Salon in Melville and Red Fish in Plainview.
The menu, predictably, features plenty of steaks and chops: a 14-ounce prime strip steak with herb butter ($44), a 16-ounce rib-eye with pineapple-soy-ginger marinade ($41) and grilled lamb chops with balsamic-fig demi glace and a potato croquette ($42) are among the meatier options.
But there are also entree salads such as a Thai steak and noodle salad with mango and peanuts, sandwiches ($24), fish dishes such as day-boat scallops with herb hummus ($36) and pan-seared salmon with roast asparagus ($32), the “25 burger” with Vermont Cheddar, bacon, truffle aioli and a fried egg ($21), ginger-soy-glazed ahi tuna club ($26).
Starters and salads ($9 to $22) include French onion soup, spinach-artichoke dip with white tortillas and roasted Brussels sprout flatbread with truffle aioli, Fontina, bacon and shaved Parmesan.
BLVD25 is open every day from 5 to 10 p.m., to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Lunch is planned to start soon.
1496 Northern Blvd, Manhasset, 516-918-9083.