Do you know Jehangir Mehta? He's the heralded pastry chef who was also runner up on last season's The Next Iron Chef. Well he owns Graffiti, a tiny restaurant in the East Village.
So when we were going to be in New York and Philly for a weekend wedding, I jumped at the chance to make reservations; mind you more than a month in advance and good thing I did!
Graffiti is an unassuming storefront on a tree lined street just east of NYU's campus. Heck, we would have passed it by if not for the that had line formed outside! Inside the place is super tiny, not much larger than our bedroom. It has bar height communal tables bunched against each other and you're literally eating off your neighbor plate. White table clothes this is not; try newspapers as place mats and I counted only 30 seats. Our reservations were at 5:30; by 6:00 the place was packed and rightfully so.
tapas style modern Indian cuisine done exceptionally well! Plus the menu can be modified for vegetarians. The wait staff was cordial and took the time to explain each dish's complexity after it's arrival at the table. Despite the cramped quarters, the restaurant was very inviting.
If in New York, this is a can't miss experience. So here's a synopsis of our meal -
- Prosecco lychee martini - could drink them all night if not for our theater tixs for 8:00
- Green chili paneer served with warm mini naans - the right balance of heat to start with
- Veggie dumplings with grapefruit sauce served under fried noodles - an interesting mix of Chinese and Indian that I enjoyed much more than Shefali
- Eggplant steamed buns with thyme fennel relish - our favorite dish; words can't even describe so you'll have to taste for yourself
- Veggie sliders with chipotle mayo - a fresh take on Bombay street food; better than I've ever tasted in India
- Coconut macaroons with dulce de leche - the perfect dessert to end this amazing meal
Bottom line is if you want to understand why New York is the foodie mecca, try Graffiti. It embodies all that New York is - a melting pot of cultures and culinary experiences. Go check it out and make reservations for four, Shefali and I will be joining you!