Eli Kulp, Ellen Yin, and their NYC crew just launched their dinner menu at High Street on Hudson (637 Hudson Street, 917-388-3944), thus completing the West Village location’s metamorphosis into a proper all-day dining sibling to their popular restaurant in Philly, High Street on Market. Kulp and Yin worked on perfecting daytime service to help them get into a groove, and for just over a month, New Yorkers have been able to sample Kulp’s breakfast and lunch offerings, as well as pastries like kabocha squash cake and chocolate brioche, from Sullivan Street Bakery alum Alex Bois.
With the arrival of BEC last year, NYC may have reached a peak in the breakfast-sandwich category, but High Street’s four options ($12–$13) are serious contenders, including bold ingredients like horseradish cheddar and Russian dressing. There’s even a vegetarian egg sandwich stuffed with seared king oyster mushrooms, slicked with black trumpet mayonnaise. Other morning items include oatmeal topped with crunchy oat crumble, beet-cured salmon, and a toast sampler. A “Meatpacker” breakfast — with broccoli rabe, spicy coppa ham, and a malted breakfast sausage — is $16, making it the priciest item on the menu for the most important meal of the day.
During a recent weekday lunch, Kulp was in the house chatting with diners (many of whom greeted him warmly) and conferring with his staff. With a not-too-crowded dining room, service was quick and genial.
High Street endeavors to be produce-driven, and there are plenty of vegetable small plates (Sicilian cauliflower, pumpkin soup with pickled squash). A trio of vegetarian salads ($13–$15) might cause an uproar with the Niçoise crowd, whether it’s the plump cider cranberries in a farro salad or the bittersweet combination of radicchio and “blistered” grapes that prop up a broccoli-based one. We couldn’t stop digging into the kitchen’s cold-weather panzanella, with squash, kale, yogurt, apples, and croutons doused in vinaigrette.
Sandwiches ($12–$18) arrive on wooden serving boards next to long, tender pickled chiles. Most of them are imports from High Street on Market, though our eggplant sandwich layered charred eggplant tahini with fresh cloumage cheese, while our compatriots down south enjoy theirs with smoked tomato sauce and smoked Amish cheddar.
The fact is, geography makes no difference when you have a couple of duck meatballs staring you down, especially when they’re slicked with duck liver and onions and covered in melted Swiss, which works bewitchingly with a ladle of spicy marinara. And Kulp’s take on that other famous Philly sandwich folds together lushly spiced roast pork slices with provolone, topped with zippy fermented broccoli rabe mash.
If you have time to while away the afternoon, lunch desserts ($5–$6) are worth lingering over, although the options are less ambitious than the dinnertime selection. Tahini mousse intermingles with cinnamon milk jam, and an affogato banks on soft scoops of nutty caraway-rye ice cream, served with smoked malt graham crackers.