There must have been a lot of pressure on the 65 restaurants represented at the Ninth Annual Village Voice Choice Eats Tasting Event. Every year, in preparing a single dish to be served to all attendees, each participating restaurant gets one shot to make a lasting impression. In short, to create a future guest, that dish better be damn good. For the attendees, itâ€™s a chance to sample food from all five boroughs and the cuisine of more than 35 nations. Needless to say, there was a lot of delicious food, and a lot of happy diners. For next year, it may not be a bad idea for the Voice to invest in some wheelbarrows to assist overindulgent guests with their return home.
My picks from the event:
1. Black Ant
Tacos de Mejillon
The East Village Mexican restaurant has an inspired menu and offered a tasty mussel taco complete with a lovely presentation including asparagus and radish.
The West Village Italian Restaurant with a rooftop garden served up a tasty crostini for the event.
3. Pearl & Ash
One of the lightest dishes offered was the fluke crudo from the Boweryâ€™s Pearl & Ash, and it was quite tasty.
4. Quality Eats
Grilled Nueske’s Bacon
The West Villageâ€™s steak restaurant served up juicy pieces of bacon over peanut butter with a spicy jalapeno jelly on top.
5. Streets BK
Peri Peri Wings
This Williamsburg outpost provided scrumptious grilled chicken wings flavored with Peri Peri glaze and South African chilies.
The East Villageâ€™s French-Japanese fusion joint offered a tataki appetizer with mackerel, ponzu, horseradish and trout roe.
7. Doughnut Plant
Not surprisingly, the doughnut chainâ€™s strawberry cake doughnut, with fresh, organic strawberries baked directly into the batter, was delicious.
If youâ€™re feeling like you missed out, donâ€™t fret. Thereâ€™s another upcoming food event in the not-too-distant future, and this oneâ€™s a newbie. The Village Voiceâ€™s inaugural Brunch Eats will take place on the evening of May 11 on the Intrepid and will feature breakfast food from more than 20 restaurants as well as cocktails.
For more info, see: www.bruncheats.com