One of my favorite ways to wile away a lazy winter weekend afternoon is to pop into a restaurant in those quiet hours between lunch and dinner for a snack. Nothing substantial, just something salty, something sweet, and a tall glass of something soothing. We found ourselves on 29th Street this weekend and were immediately pulled in by these signs:
My go-to food guru, the illustrious Adam Gross (who is currently in Paris cooking with the finest chefs in Europe!), introduced me to Resto a few years back. A Belgian restaurant that prides themselves on delicacies like fried balls of veal and a curious concept called “nose to tail dining”, it’s not the typical spot you’d go to for a bite and a beer as a vegetarian. What’s the draw then, you ask? Simple: the frites.
Resto takes their taters and creates thickly sliced, perfectly salted french fries that when, dunked into their array of dipping sauces, are simply heavenly. The sauces come in flavors such as lime pickle, mayo and onion, sriracha, gribiche, and my personal favorite, sweet chili. It was the exact amount of sweetness to offset the salty…mmm.
Combine them with the right combination of brewskies and you’re in for a treat. We started with a pale Blanche de Namur, merged into a Ter Dolen Armand, and capped the afternoon off with a wildly hoppy Biere De L’Amitie. When in ordering doubt, as the bartender. Along with awesome recommendations, he’ll give you a bit of a history/geography lesson, too. Gotta love those brilliant Belgians. Or in this case, brilliant New Yorkers who work in a Belgian restaurant.
If you don’t fall into the vegetarian category, I’m sure Adam would encourage you to order the meat, and lots of it. Since deep-fried pork jowl is not exactly my area of expertise, I’ll let Adam give you carnivorous suggestions when he returns to NYC. Pork jowl aside, we definitely enjoyed our Sunday snack.
What’s your go-to restaurant for a bite and a beer?
WHERE: Resto111 East 29th Street New York, New York 212.685.5585