ABC Kitchen is Jean-Georges’ venture into the popular locavore arena. Having been disappointed by some of his other restaurants, I was skeptical about ABC Kitchen despite the hype and difficulty of getting a reservation (settled for 9:30 on a Sunday 29 days out! I know, it was sloppy not doing 30). After dining there, however, I have to say that all the praise is justified. This was definitely one of the best all-around meals I’ve ever eaten.
I would describe the space as “woodsy chic.” It feels like you’ve entered someone’s decked-out log cabin. The noise level was surprisingly low for a packed restaurant, yet another reason you should bring a date here. The service was fantastic with our waitress describing dishes in a mouth-watering detail I’ve never experienced before. Nearly everything we ate was great or better. ABC Kitchen needs to be in the discussion for best restaurants in New York, especially among those you can eat at for under $100/person.
Roasted Kabocha Squash Toast ** – The squash was very fresh, soft and flavorful. It was very good but lacked the complexity of some of the other dishes here.
Roasted Cauliflower ** – The cauliflower was crisp and tasty with the fried egg helping keep it moist.
Farro Salad ****- The farro was mixed with sweet potatoes, cranberries and bleu cheese. The symphony of sweet, salty, tart and smoky was simply amazing.
Whole Wheat Pizza w/ ricotta, dates, prosciutto and radicchio *** – We ordered way too much food and pizza was last but we couldn’t stop ourselves from devouring it. The dates surprisingly didn’t make it too sweet and the flavor of the baked ricotta was phenomenal. Throw that on a paper thin crust and it’s one of the best pizza’s in New York.
Cornmeal Crusted Skate **** – Skate’s not always the most exciting fish but the kale and butternut squash puree added a bitter/ sweet combo that was to die for. Hope they keep this one on the menu as long as they can.
Roasted Suckling Pig *** – Crispy bacon (and bacon marmelade!) on top and soft, melt-in-your mouth pork underneath. It’s a powerful dish on a menu of otherwise soft, complex flavors.
35 E 18th St. (B’Way & Park)
New York, NY