If Superiority Burger’s namesake sandwich is too extreme a trip into vegetarianism, Graffiti Food & Wine Bar (222 East 10th Street, 212-677-0695) chef Jehangir Mehta’s signature sliders are a gateway drug. The acclaimed former pastry chef has spent years hooking regulars on these exquisitely seasoned guilty pleasures that reckon a global trove of produce and spices and trump a gratuitous heft of Pat Lafrieda beef fat. The diners at his stalwart hole-in-the wall continue to only want more, not different, because Mehta’s menu’s been nearly untouched since he first opened the intimate dining room’s shutters on a quiet stretch in 2007.
Just as they did on day one, Graffiti burgers come by the pair. Divided by a handful of baked garlic fingerlings that absorb the punch of Mehta’s house-made tomato-chipotle mayonnaise, the kick of the burgers is in no way overshadowed. At 60% pure Angus, they’re cut with a blend of fresh, diced onions, tomatoes, green chiles, and mushrooms heady with coriander, cumin, ginger, and mint. And like any business-minded pusher, knowing that media and finance types want a taste of what downtowners want to keep to themselves, you’ll find the burgers farther south when Mehta opens Graffiti Earth in Tribeca’s Duane Street Hotel this October.
The Village Voice is counting down to our Best of New York City issue in October. We’re combing the city every day, one dish at a time, to guide you to the most delicious food in NYC. These are our 100 Favorite Dishes for 2015, in no particular order, save for the top 10. To read about previous dishes, browse our 100 Favorite Dishes page.