It's hard to imagine that at one time in New York City there simply were no fine dining restaurants at all, just cafes and inns where diners had little control over what they were served. In 1837, the Delmonico brothers made history when they opened the first restaurant where diners could sit at their own cloth-covered table and order off a printed menu designed by the first "star" chef. Fast forward to today, and Delmonico's still holds fascination for both visitors and residents of NYC who make their way to the Financial District to dine inside a little piece of history. And now, to celebrate their 175th anniversary, the storied institution opened another location, Delmonico's Kitchen, in the Garment District.

Like its predecessor downtown, Delmonico's Kitchen offers a variety of classic American dishes, some of which were originally created by the restaurant's Chef de Cuisine, Charles Ranhofer, in the early 1860s. The Steak Delmonico ($45) and Lobster Delmonico (Newburg) ($25/49) both made the trek uptown, plus the Crab Cake "Benedict," a riff on the classic Eggs Benedict that was invented by Chef Ranhofer. The Double Bone in "John Krupa" Delmonico Plate ($95), a three pound bone-in rib eye steak for two, also appears on the new menu. Chef Billy Oliva, current Executive Chef, added a large raw bar with many classic components from oysters to lobster to tuna tartare, all of which you can sample in the Citadel ($42) or Delmonico's ($78) seafood towers.

A nice variety of starters, sides and lunch sandwiches round out the menu, including steakhouse staples like spinach any style and the Classic Delmonico Potatoes. The Tuscan Kale Caesar, made with raw kale leaves and a healthy dose of dressing, succeeds in updating the classic salad, especially if you get a forkful of the accompanying white anchovy and Parmesan. If you take a seat at the marble-topped bar, "snacks" like Lamb Pops ($15) with mustard yogurt and herbs and Vintage Farms Steak Frites ($23) with Pierre poivre butter give you the opportunity to sample Chef Oliva's flavorful creations without spending your whole paycheck. You can also order one of the house cocktails, all $13, including the South Williams (made with "illegal" mescal, fresh grapefruit, basil drops, aperol and simple syrup) or a classic martini garnished with enormous blue cheese-stuffed olives.

Architect and designer Glen Coben wanted to combine Delmonico's old-world elegance with fresh, modern design elements to bring the restaurants near 200 year history into the 21st century. Edison-style bulbs encased in glass orbs illuminate striking, graphic wallpaper offset by a dark, pressed-tin ceiling and red banquets. There's nothing wrong with the dining room, per se, but it obviously lacks the atavistic charm of its predecessor, which attracts customers as much for the food as for the slice of history it presented. If you find yourself stranded in the deserted Garment District and need a reliable, if pricey, dinner, then Delmonico's Kitchen will fit your needs. Otherwise, you're better off heading downtown to the original.

207 West 36th Street // 212-695-5220