When your address is Yorkville a little renovation and restoration is always in style. Recently, NAO, a stunner of a steakhouse open for just a few years opted to go under the knife and emerge as Estia. Owned by ICONINK, Estia is decidedly feminine, a departure from the somewhat masculine interior that NAO exuded.
Well talented (and tattooed) Executive Chef Ben Heaton is still in charge in the kitchen, with Chef Brent Maxwell (ex- East Thirty Six) managing day to day.
And the wonderful wood burning oven is thankfully doing everything but pizzas. The breads are deluxe, focaccia, crackers, red fife, and cripsy crackers with warm olives, smoked melanzana and z’aatar spiked olive oil. Marvelous meats are offered and should be ordered, they’re all in house-cured and pair well with the breads. Seafood carries the Mediterranean theme, crispy Calamari may be playing it a bit safe, but tasty nevertheless. Bolder options like the Madai whole fish prove Chef’s departure from an all meat focus and his depth in seafood never mind just steaks. Your best bet is sharing plates, make your own DIY surf and turf combo it with the stellar 14 Oz. Bone-In Daily Cut steak, served with salsa verde. Grilled over charcoal means super juicy meat with a tiny crust from cooking over high heat. In other words, mouthwatering. Not to be missed are the well executed desserts, particularly the Kefalatiri and Ricotta Sfakia. Always end on a sweet note! It makes for happy food memories, or something like that!! Thanks to Estia for hosting. All opinions are my own and aren’t up for sale.