Restaurants Show off their Chops at Choice Eats

Ryan Bartlow of Quality Eats preparing Grilled Nueske's Bacon
Ryan Bartlow of Quality Eats preparing Grilled Nueske’s Bacon

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, it’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.

2. Rosemary’s
Crostini Toscana
The West Village Italian Restaurant with a rooftop garden served up a tasty crostini for the event.

3. Pearl & Ash
Fluke Crudo
One of the lightest dishes offered was the fluke crudo from the Bowery’s Pearl & Ash, and it was quite tasty.

4. Quality Eats
Grilled Nueske’s Bacon
The West Village’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.

6. Bara
Mackerel Tataki
The East Village’s French-Japanese fusion joint offered a tataki appetizer with mackerel, ponzu, horseradish and trout roe.

7. Doughnut Plant
Strawberry donut
Not surprisingly, the doughnut chain’s strawberry cake doughnut, with fresh, organic strawberries baked directly into the batter, was delicious.

If you’re feeling like you missed out, don’t fret. There’s another upcoming food event in the not-too-distant future, and this one’s a newbie. The Village Voice’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:

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