The New York Times has an app which showcases their current 50 favorite restaurants in Manhattan. The list is constantly rotating and includes everything from tiny bakeries to full blown steakhouses, at a good mix of price points, so there's something for everyone in every neighborhood. Highlighted locations are shown as pinpoints on a map, which makes it a snap to hone in on a particular area of the city and find something new (and highly recommended). I'd been waiting for a chance to try it out...
As a kick start to the holiday weekend I got out of work early, so I wandered over to Chelsea in search of interesting gallery exhibits. DVC called when he finished work to suggest we meet up for dinner. Sweet. Aaaand that I should pick the spot. Uh oh. In the past this girl has commonly been guilty of the "I dunno, whatever you wanna do" routine. But I've decided to ditch that indecisive gal on the west coast! Pulled up the handy dandy app map (ha!), found a spot roughly equidistance between us and gave him an address. 3rd and 13th. Beat ya there!
Found the tiny place without any trouble, it looked really cute from the outside so I was instantly pleased with myself. Interesting layout inside, deep and narrow with the open kitchen up front at the street. Foregone is the traditional ceiling in lieu of exposed air ducts and pipes, making the lean space feel much more spacious. Cool lighting installations, marquee fixtures and words painted on the exposed brick walls. It was suggested we sit at the small bar overlooking the kitchen for a fun experience. Good call, as the cooks were friendly and entertaining (thanks again, app!).
We started with PRA MUK YANG (grilled calamari) and YUM JIN GAI (very rustic chicken soup), both delicious and perfectly at the top end of my spice-o-meter. Rounded out the meal with GHANG KIAW WAN (green curry with jasmine rice), which was amazingly tasty. So, so good. I can seriously still taste it. Can't wait to go back, though it might be quite a while, what with everything else out there to sample!
There was a platter of GIANT brownies near us that I eyed the entire evening (we're talking a good 6 inches by 4 inches each), but we were too full after dinner to even take one home. The chef explained they were dark chocolate and chili brownies. Yipes. Maybe next time.