Category Archives: West Village

Taste of the West Village

Now that fall is officially here, I feel the time is right to share a few of my impressions of this event, which took place Sunday on what was probably one of the last ultra-sultry days of the year!  I visited with a couple of New York Kitchen favorites, and met some new future participants whom I look forward to bringing to you.  All parties dished out some pretty amazing food, and a good time was had by all.

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Braeburn revisited

Upon returning to Braeburn one afternoon, chef Brian Bistrong told us more about the ingredients that he uses.  There is a large painting in the dining room of the restaurant, which depicts Bistrong’s farm-house in Connecticut where he grows mint, lavender, and wild raspberries and has an orchard of apple, peach and pear trees.  Whenever possible, the fruit and herbs are incorporated into the menu.  When in doubt, Bistrong consults his gardening mentor Jeffrey Frank, of Liberty Gardens in Pennsylvania, who is also Braeburn’s supplier of organic microgreens and heirloom tomatoes .  The American bistro’s signature dishes include duck with kolhrabi, wheat berries and bing cherry sauce, as well as hand-rolled pasta with braised rabbit and mint.  During prepping the crew listens to NPR and rock music on iPods.  When dining out, Brian and his wife like to eat korean food at Do Hwa in the West Village, and Vietnamese food at Chinatown’s Nha Trang.

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Braeburn

Chef Brian Bistrong cooks and expedites on the line of his restaurant, Braeburn, which has been open nearly two years.  He works quietly and methodically, moves effortlessly and sees everything that goes on in his kitchen.  Bistrong, who spent seven years at Restaurant Bouley, more recently was the executive chef at The Harrison.  Of his food, chef Bistrong says “I want to create dishes that people crave and can’t stop thinking about until they come for more.”  There are six people working in the kitchen nightly, and English, Spanish and Portuguese are spoken.  117 Perry Street  www.braeburnrestaurant.com

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The Rusty Knot

This popular nautically themed watering hole on the far West Side of Manhattan is the brainchild of Taavo Somer of Freeman’s, and Ken Friedman of neighboring Spotted Pig.  In 2009, New York Magazine’s Adam Platt voted their pretzel dog the best in the city.  More recently, chef Sue Torres of Sueno was brought on board to add a Mexican flair to their menu.  There is usually one cook at a time in the kitchen.  On the day of this shoot Adrian was at the helm for the day shift, and  Juan came in for the night shift.  425 West Street

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