The bar looks like a more appealing spin on an office cafeteria: checkered floors and plastic furniture, while the dining room is carpeted and tableclothed. There’s a big price difference, too: mains in the dining room run up to $38, while tapas in the bar go $4-$12.
These two seating areas are so different that they really seem like two entirely different restaurants, and I prefer the bar–the price point and attitude just seems more appropriate right now. I appreciated that it was lively, too, but most of all, I thought the tapas were bright, skillful and delicious, while something about the main courses, like lamb loin with a pepita crust, seemed staid and impersonal.
If you go, don’t miss the short rib, which is braised in red wine and then scattered with little spheres of pomegranate juice that look just like pomegranate seeds, but without the seedy crunch. I also loved the whole fried shrimp.
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La Fonda del Sol
200 Park Avenue 212-867-6767