I grew up in Montreal and have since lived in Toronto / Philly / NYC. As such, I've definitely been exposed to a lot of high-end, cutting edge food (Toronto, not so much...but been there, done that pretty much anywhere in NY -- Per Se, Eleven Madison Park, Joel Robuchon, Momofuku Ssam Bar, Momofuku Ko, The Dutch, Gramercy Tavern...all in the last year).
It's my mom's birthday in a few weeks and I want to take her somewhere good for dinner. She's a bit of a foodie too but doesn't have the means I do to go out for dinner all the time, so I want to take her somewhere good. I've been to all the old standards in the city but none of the "New wave" restaurants (save for PDC) -- 400 Coups, Bremner, Joe Beef, Garde-Manger, etc... are all places neither of us has been.
Any suggestions? We are not averse to most ingredients and my mom can handle a "cool" (re: Not uptight, white tablecloth) place.