Tejal Rao at Pig and Khao; Robert Sietsema at Chote Nawab
Our own Tejal Rao visits former Top Chef contestant Leah Cohen's Lower East Side South Asian restaurant, Pig and Khao, and finds the outcome boisterous and inconsistent. While Cohen's ability to cook is evident in the noodle curry khao soi which is "full of quality crunch and chew," the crispy pata "has the look and feel of mummified human flesh." The noisy restaurant suffers from being on today's Lower East Side and "if you are old, you will feel it."
Our Robert Sietsema heads to Curry Hill and experiences "Bollywood for your mouth" at Chote Nawab. The Indian restaurant specializes in tunde ke kebab, a lamb patty that "sizzles in a cast-iron skillet," and "jazzily decorated" environs.
At The Times, Pete Wells samples the exclamatory vegetables (Cauliflower! Onions!) at Amanda Cohen's Dirt Candy and finds the chef "inventing her own" impressive cuisine. The environment is exciting and "can be like going to a child's birthday party in a country where all the children love vegetables." He awards the restaurant two stars.
NY Mag's Adam Platt compares L'Apicio, the new East Village pasta haven from Gabe Thompson and Joe Campanale, to the duo's other already appreciated establishments. Platt finds that "the menu here is stocked with appetizing-sounding pastas and polentas smothered in elegantly earthy 'Italian inspired' ragùs," and gives it two stars.
Silvia Killingsworth at The New Yorker samples the fried chicken and catfish at Bobwhite Lunch and Supper Counter. She finds that the "meat is brined in sweet tea, and the skin is consistently crackling and crisp, with just enough pepper and spices to be both noticeable and memorable."
NY Post's Steve Cuozzo experienced the "almost too civilized" dining room at the brand-new Andrew Carmellini project, The Library at the Public. The restaurant is the "classy spawn of Joe's Pub," the music venue next door and appealing dishes like "a splendid burger, juicy and loaded with mouth feel thanks to a 50-50 chuck and brisket blend" are worth the visit.
Bloomberg's Ryan Sutton has mixed feelings about Battersby, the much Carroll Gardens "28-seat joint." While the restaurant has received raves by many, Sutton is not entirely convinced stating, "It's a fine, if uneven, local spot, not consistently good enough to justify riding the F train from distant precincts to Bergen Street." He gives it two stars.
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