More Merchants in the News

With so many great merchants on, it can be tough to keep up with all of the praise they get. Here are a couple notable mentions some of our restaurant in New York City received in the last week or so. merchants – always making us proud!
In Time Out New York’s “100 Best Things to Eat” issue, merchants were commended for their veggies, meat and fries (three of our favorite food groups). Here’s what they had to say:
“Gujarati thali at Bhojan: Curry Hill’s kosher-vegetarian standout Bhojan offers the city’s best lunchtime thali. The dizzying spread includes creamy saag paneer, soothing dal (lentils) or spicy curried potatoes and eggplant, with sides of blistered chapati (flatbread), chutneys and shrikhand (strained yogurt spiced with saffron).”
“Sweet Bao fries at Baohaus: The pillowy bread that chef-owner Eddie Huang uses for his steamed pork buns enjoys a sweet second life as dessert. A dunk in hot oil makes chunks of the spongy stuff crisp on the outside and pull-apart soft within. The fries are served with thick sauces made from black sesame and taro.”
When the Village Voice ranked the Best Food and Drink of 2010, they also has some nice things to say about a few merchants. Check out their recs for 2010’s best dishes:
Bhojan means “home-cooked meal,” and the restaurant’s vegetarian Gujarati thali lives up to its moniker. The stainless-steel platter holds a score of little dishes around its circumference, the middle of the plate occupied by a pile of white rice, an airy puri, and a bit of pickle. One bowl is filled with a thin, white potage of warm, spiced yogurt, a dish typical of the region. It has the consistency of water but a tangy, milky, assertive flavor; it’s best poured over rice and eaten, goopily, with your hands. Another holds a wonderful daal dhokli—lentils swimming with chewy homemade noodles.”
“These are the days of a pork bun in every pot, but they’re not all created equal. This year, Eddie Huang’s Taiwanese gua bao joint Baohaus gained a following for its outrageously delicious signature steamed snacks. The best of the bunch is the Chairman Bao, which harbors a tender, sticky, thick slab of pork belly, evenly striated with lean and fat. It’s sprinkled with coarse Taiwanese red sugar, crushed peanuts, and pickled vegetable relish, and tucked into a spongy mantou wrapper.”
“Oddly enough, Laut is actually a good Malaysian restaurant masquerading as a screechy pan-Asian joint. So ignore Usher panting loudly over the speakers and skip over the superfluous sushi and Thai stuff in favor of the curry laksa—a rich coconut-based soup, creamy orange in color, the chile-oil-stippled surface hiding a generous pile of yellow egg noodles underneath. The pungent base of chilies, lemongrass, belacan (fermented shrimp paste), and shallots balances the sweetness of the coconut. Cubes of fried tofu sponge up the broth, while shrimp and half of a boiled egg bob alongside.”
“Pichet Ong plays with Asian and American dessert conventions and almost always comes out on top. At Spot Dessert Bar, the Ovaltine ice cream has a silken, dense texture, and tastes just like the malted milk drink. Get it with chewy mochi on top, or walnut “soil,” which turns out to simply be crushed nuts.”
“Gilauti kebab hails from Lucknow, once known as the City of the Nawabs—Muslim noblemen of the Mughal Empire. The story goes that this particular kebab was invented for a toothless nawab who wanted some lamb, but could no longer chew. So a clever (or terrified) cook minced the meat so finely that it resembled a paste, mixed it with spices and papaya purée to further tenderize it, and steamed the patties over an open fire. Bhatti Indian Grill
makes the city’s best version. The small, pale pucks of meat go all silken in your mouth, like a marvelous, spiced pâté.”

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