Landing in a city I’m unfamiliar with always feels like a food-oriented scavenger hunt to me. The challenge is how many clues can I glean from Facebook, Twitter, trusted friends and restaurant reviews, to unearth the gems that will give us special memories. Our recent trip to NYC yielded a few finds I want to share with you:
- The Fat Radish - living on the West coast, where so many of the buildings are new, relatively speaking, it’s easy to forget that buildings which are 150+ years old, bring their own charm and personality to the table. The Fat Radish is one of those fabulous New York dining experiences – painted white brick walls, rather long and narrow, with great art on the walls and a dimly lit interior, you immediately know you’re in for a unique experience. The meal starts with a fat radish, natch, and the menu is punctuated by locally-sourced produce prepared in an often unexpected way. Take for instance the monkfish green curry ($27) or the beet root crumble ($16). The banoffee pie for dessert was a blast from the past, although not made quite as I recall ($9). Back in the day, I spent many a long Sunday boiling an unopened can of condensed milk for hours, hoping it didn’t explode and longing for the rich dulce de leche to be revealed at the end of the day. I digress. Check out Fat Radish next time you’re in town.
Empellón Taqueria – an upmarket take on Mexican cuisine, Taqueria satisfied everyone at our table with its fresh spin on old favorites. Salsas were reinvented and updated to include a smoky cashew salsa which was so good we asked our waiter how we could make it at home. Cauliflower came with almonds and an almendrado dressing ($9). The sopes ($9) – open bite-sized dumplings made from corn with various fillings were satisfying – we liked the meat ones best. And the tacos, which range from $12-39 for 2-3, depending on the filling, couldn’t be a further cry from the sad little splats by the same name at Taco Bell. From Brussel sprouts with burnt jalapeño hummus, to chicken with black kale, crema and salsa, every single one was delish and gone in the blink of an eye. Highly recommended. Get thee down to the West Village stat. > Read more