Hotel Klassik, Berlin.
One of the best things about the Hotel Klassik is its central location, walking distance to Friedrichshain’s countless eating, drinking, and shopping hot spots. The building may look a bit generic from the outside, but inside, the décor is stylish and modern with its dark wood and white furniture. Rooms are well-appointed with comfortable beds, flat-screen TVs, writing desks, Wi-Fi (for a fee), minibar, and large sliding glass windows. The in-house restaurant serves an impressive full breakfast as well as Mediterranean-inspired fare. Guests may also wine and dine in the charming terrace garden. Pros: excellent location for neighborhood vibe and access to transportation; plentiful, fresh breakfast buffet; friendly and helpful staff. Cons: no A/C; if windows are open, you’ll likely hear noise from the street below; room service ends at 11 p.m. 6 Revaler Strasse, Berlin, 10245. 30/319-8860. www.hotelklassik-berlin.com. 43 rooms. In-room: safe, refrigerator, Wi-Fi, kitchen (some). In-hotel: restaurant, room service, bar, laundry service, concierge, public Internet, no-smoking rooms. AE, MC, V. Rooms start at €85 (approximately $134 USD).
Commerce, New York.
This former speakeasy harkens back to days gone by with its Diego Rivera-style murals, vintage sconces, and restored subway tiles. The young crowd comes not only for the décor, but to taste Chef Harold Moore’s seasonal cuisine. Appetizers range from truffle-flecked asparagus and morels with poached egg, to yuzu-marinated hamachi ceviche. The entrées are just as vibrant: bright, sweet peas offset pristine halibut, and the shareable roast chicken, presented tableside, is served with foie gras bread stuffing. The smart, nimble waitstaff constantly replenishes your bread basket with warm baguettes and brioche, and steers you towards the dainty pineapple cheesecake with cilantro sorbet for a sweet ending. For a quieter meal, choose one of the booths near the bar. 50 Commerce St., West Village. 212/524-2301. No lunch. AE, MC, V. Median entrée price: $28.00
Memphis Taproom, Philadelphia.
Beer aficionado Brendan Hartranft is the mastermind behind Philadelphia’s newest gastropub. Beef and onion pasties, short ribs, and sweet-onion-filled fried pastry dough are addictive options for soaking up the many tasty brews available. Vegans swear by The ALT, a version of the BLT with smoked avocado that tastes better than bacon. Desserts come from neighborhood micro-bakery, BAKED. Expect a rotating list of 30-plus American craft beers in addition to Belgian, German, and English selections by the bottle. Although the space evokes the air of classic Parisian bistros and Belgian beer cafes, its décor is a nod to the traditional Philadelphia working-class neighborhood corner taprooms (once called “Tappys”). Artwork is modern, and much of the building has been restored to its early century glory. Cask ale lovers come out Saturday mornings, when a different firkin of beer (or 11 gallons) is tapped and gravity poured at room temperature. 2331 E. Cumberland St., Port Fishington. 212/425-4460. www.memphistaproom.com. No reservations. AE, MC, VC. Median entrée price: $11.
8 oz. Burger Bar, Los Angeles.
When chic Table 8 moved down the street to roomier digs, Chef Govind Armstrong and partners converted the original location to 8 oz., a gourmet burger bar with vintage touches like subway tiles and stamped ceilings. You can create your own burger from Black Angus or Estancia grass-fed beef (aged in a Himalayan salt-lined chamber), adding such things as mustard greens, fried egg, or Humbolt Fog goat cheese, then further enhancing with tomato chutney, green peppercorn aïoli or other sauces. As an alternative, consider a trio of plump sliders—bison, ostrich and wild boar—accompanied by three microbrews. You could even skip the burgers and munch on snacks such as deviled eggs, chorizo-stuffed fried olives, or miniature Kobe corndogs, washing it all down with a Côte du Rhône or chocolate malt. 7661 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood. 323/852-0008. www.8ozburgerbar.com. AE, D, MC, V. No lunch Mon.-Fri. Median entrée price: $11.
Sevruga, Cape Town.
In a prime quayside location on Cape Town’s busy Waterfront, swank new Sevruga (sister restaurant to popular Beluga) offers upscale dining with a menu that has something for everyone. The tome-like menu bursts with an almost overwhelming array of culinary options and an impressive wine list. The sushi is fresh and inventive, and other seafood options are fresh, local catches. Not up for fruits of the sea? A huge variety of signature dishes like beef fillet or the flambéed duck livers are offered, as well. With its modern-elegant atmosphere and key location, Sevruga is primed to be a top dining destination. Shop 4, Quay 5, Victoria Wharf, V&A Waterfront. 021/421-5134. www.sevruga.co.za. AE, D, DC, MC, V. Median entrée price: 140 ZAR (Approximately $18.00 USD).
More than just your average burger joint, m:brgr is Montreal’s only ultra-hip place to build a specialty burger with toppings like apple-wood bacon, grilled pineapple, and goat cheese. Even highfalutin foodies admit that m:brgr is a cut above, with designer mac n’cheese (served with truffle carpaccio) and Angus beef hot dogs. The décor is minimalist chic yet warm, with blonde wood paneling, chocolate brown table tops, and chalk board menus. For the kid in you, order up a banana split, a root beer float, or a deep-dish cookie. And for the adults? Spiked milkshakes, more than sixteen m:tinis, and an extensive beer and liquor list are available, which means you’ll need a second order of their awesome sweet potato fries to keep you going. 2025 rue Drummond, Downtown. H3G 1W6. 514/906-2747. AE, MC, V. Median entrée price: 15.00 CAD.
Contributors: Lisa Amand, Emma Fox, Roger Grody, Jen Laskey, Joanne Latimer, Lee Middleton