The Celeb Stalker

Restaurant: The Monkey Bar
Cuisine: Traditional American
Neighborhood: Midtown East
Address: 60 East 54th St.

I imagine this girl will be late, having spent too much time gabbing with her best friend, the seen-it-all fashionista, at the nail salon. Plan accordingly. After waffling under several chefs and losing some of its celeb-baiting luster, Graydon Carter's Monkey Bar is relevant once again, thanks to an infusion of talent curated by Ken Friedman (the Breslin, the John Dory, the Spotted Pig): Damon Wise is in the kitchen, Julie Reiner is behind the bar, and Belinda Chang is stewarding the wine. Carter is no doubt taking the change-over as an opportunity to recoup his eminent clientele, making this a perfect time to stop in with your star-stalker to see how the Vanity Fair honcho is doing.

I understand Beauty & Essex (146 Essex St.) is netting some serious star power these days. If you can stomach the wonton-taco–fueled bustle, it may also fit the bill.

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