"Few places have the vibe and verve that make this sprawling, cavernous space shimmy and sparkle. A former theater, Tao features a giant Buddha firmly towering over the dining room. A certain aura makes Tao stay exciting, so it's no wonder the specialty cocktails go down fast and the food all seems pleasantly attractive, though nothing particularly outstanding. Tao still keeps going strong after a number of years, having magically achieved a successful formula early on: fetishize the exotic and push the pretty cocktails. Recommended appetizers are the chicken satay, the squab lettuce wraps, lobster wontons with shiitake ginger broth, and crisp lobster and shrimp dumplings. Best entrees are Hong Kong XO shrimp, wasabi-crusted filet mignon and soy ginger glazed salmon. Don't miss the XO Chinese long beans either. A big hit with tourists and the Midtown business crowd alike."

42 E 58th St, New York, NY
(212) 399-3097 serving: Midtown, Midtown Center
open:Sun 12am-1am, Sun 12pm-12am, Mon-Wed 11:30am-12am, Sat 11:30am-12am, Thu-Fri 11:30am-1am

Sidewalk Score: 7 out of 10
Location, Location, Location:


Restaurants, $$$$, Asian, Bar Scene, Group Dining, Lunch Spot, Online Reservations, Pan-Asian & Pacific Rim, People Watching, American Express Accepted, Diners Club Accepted, Mastercard Accepted, Visa Accepted,

The Low Down


The Extras: Like the music? You can take home a double CD of the restaurant's soundtrack for $25.

Know Before You Go: Plan to wait up to an hour, even with a reservation.

What to Drink: House cocktails include the Blue Zen, with Bacardi Limon, Malibu rum, blue Curacao and pineapple juice ($10).

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