This Manhattan West Restaurant is Hidden Inside an Intimate Cabaret Theater

New York City’s Manhattan West development is Midtown’s newly minted upscale mecca: high-end hotel Pendry Manhattan West, chic clothing store Rothman’s, and Peloton’s behemoth studios are just a fraction of the several luxe haunts here. The modern-day plaza also houses the Midnight Theatre, a space that hosts Manhattan’s most exciting new cabaret show and Pan-Asian restaurant Hidden Leaf.

An illuminated, vintage theater sign greets guests before they walk upstairs to Hidden Leaf’s main dining room. Designed by Cycle Projects, interiorly, the Art Deco-tinged restaurant employs a palette of dark shades that create a moody ambiance within the space: deep navy-blue painted walls, dark walnut-wood trimmings, and custom brass fixtures suffusing dim light set the scene. Recessed booths swathed in a punchy orange fabric and ubiquitous clusters of greenery populate the haunt. 

Conceptualized by Brooklyn restaurateur Josh Cohen and Executive Chef Chai Trivedi, the menu highlights flavors from several Southeast Asian regions, including southern China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam. While ordering personal dishes goes just fine, the recommended method is family-style, given the menu items are encouragingly shareable. 

Standard starters include the Little Gem & Smashed Cucumber Salad served with fresh avocado, bang bang sauce, and ginger, and the Yunnan BBQ St. Louis Ribs, with sticky sauce, seeds, and preserved ginger mustard. If you’re a dim sum fan, say no more: the eponymous Dim Sum Tasting features delights like the Jade Vegetable Dumpling and Crystal Shrimp & Snow Pea Dumpling, both served alongside a specially-made dim-sum sauce. Choose the Black Pepper & Salt Jade Tofu or the Wok Roasted Rice Cakes for vegetable and tofu-forward dish options.

When it comes to libations, the restaurant’s assortment of beautifully-made cocktails taste just as good as they appear. Consider sipping a Sundowner, an inventive rendition of an Arnold Palmer, comprising turmeric, black tea, zesty lemon, and mezcal (or veto the booze, if you want the flavors without the looming buzz).

At the end of the meal, pop down to the Midnight Theatre’s 160-seat auditorium for a unique performance — from talent in all genres of music, theatre, magic, and more — to officially dub the exceptional evening as “dinner with a show.”

Top Takeaways

Location: Manhattan West, New York City

Cuisine: Southeast Asian

Price Point: $$

Takes Reservation: Yes – OpenTable & Resy

The vibe: A dusky nighttime restaurant serving unique Pan-Asian concoctions for lunch and dinner fare. 

Our favorite thing on the menu: The Dim Sum Tasting, which samples their tasty dim sum bites, including their Crunchy Pork Potstickers served with a ginger sesame sauce, and their Vegetable and Mushroom Spring Roll with tomatillo sweet chili sauce is a must-order for the table.

The attire based on the vibe: Smart Casual

Breakfast, Lunch, or Dinner: Lunch: Tuesday – Friday, 11:30 am – 3 pm; Dinner: Monday – Saturday, 3 pm – 11 pm

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