Manhattan, New York – The Fat Radish

Restaurant: The Fat Radish
Cuisine:
Eclectic/Pacific Northwest/Gastropub/Local
Last visited:
September 10, 2011
Location:
Manhattan, NY (Lower East Side)
Address:
17 Orchard Street
Nearby subway stops:
East Broadway
Price Range: 
$10-20 for brunch, $20-30+ dinner

1Poor 2OK 3Good 4Very good 5Excellent 6Tres Excellent!!

Food: 3 (based on brunch items I had)
Service: 3
Ambiance: 4
Overall: 3.5
Additional comments:

  • Opened end of 2010
  • English inspired gastropub
  • Sophisticated farm to table
  • Local/Seasonal menu
  • Eclectic menu
  • Some home baked goods
  • Casual, but classy
  • Vegetarian friendly
  • Wine bar
  • Cash only
  • Brunch/Lunch/Dinner
  • Weekend brunch: Sat-Sun 11am-4pm
  • Dinner: Mon-Sun 5:30pm-midnight

**Recommendations: n/a

And another one. I’m referring to the discrete signage again. They love doing this in New York and it’s common of many up and coming restaurants as well as tried, tested and true local favourites. The Fat Radish is one of the newest restaurants to hit the dining scene and it seems to be well received by locals.

The restaurant is interesting, exciting and unexpected for the area so it added to the overall charm of it. There’s nothing around here so it comes up randomly and the menu is gourmet and speaks higher than its location.

The front of the restaurant is a cafe serving coffees, teas and home baked goods.

The Fat Radish is an English inspired gastropub and this seems to be one of the trends in New York right now, or even the last little while. The idea of a gastropub. It’s all over the UK, and basically it’s a bar meets a restaurant with gourmet food, wine and beer. It’s a fancy bar.

This gastropub took on a farm to table theme which was obvious from the moment I walked in. It kind of had that Austin, Texas or Portland feel. I loved the casual, contemporary, and country atmosphere, but the wooden chairs didn’t make it too comfortable to stay long.

The menu is local and seasonal, like most new restaurants of this caliber are these days. I came here for brunch, so I can’t speak for the dinner menu, but I wasn’t that inspired to come back for brunch. I am a bit curious to see their dinner menu because it sounds interesting and creative, but if the brunch was an indication of dinner, then I wouldn’t be in a rush to check it out.

Although different in style because different in chefs, I would rather go to The Spotted Pig or Prune for a gastropub experience or at least brunch. Those are a bit “yesterday’s news”, but I found the food to be better which is most important to me. The food was just very simple here, which is their philosophy, but it was almost to the point of something I could make at home so I didn’t see the value. It was good and there was effort to be finer than a diner, but I had higher expectations for it. I found it more unique to the area than it was for my tastes.

On the table:

Beet Root & Pear Juice4/6

  • $6
  • This was a bit sweet for me, but it was very natural. It was heavier with beet flavour than pear so probably it’s why it was sweeter too.
  • It was pure juice with no pulp of course, but I wanted more pear and I could almost taste the background of celery, but the flavour isn’t watery.
  • It was fresh, but quite pricey and it wasn’t something you couldn’t make at home with a juicer.

Avocado & 7 Grain Toast with Spicy Eggs3/6

  • $12
  • This was the most recommended, so I went for it, and unfortunately it was one of those things you feel like you could make better at home.
  • The presentation was as appetizing as the dish. I found it a very literal translation of ingredients and was hoping for more creativity and effort.
  • I think the 7 grain bread could have been home made, but it wasn’t particularly amazing and it just tasted like other good quality ones.
  • The avocado was executed as a guacamole spread and I was hoping for some fresh heirloom tomatoes, chopped cilantro, onions and lime juice in it.
  • It didn’t even have to be Mexican, but some sweet corn or local vegetables would be nice since that is what the restaurant supports anyways.
  • It tasted like plain creamy ripe pureed avocado with maybe a bit of mayo and some lime juice.

  • The egg on the other hand was fantastic and it saved the dish a bit.
  • It was a six minute boiled egg and the yolk was creamy and semi-runny and beautiful. I wouldn’t mind it even softer, but it was fine.
  • Yes, it was good with the avocado toast, but again, this is something you could make at home.
  • The spicy sauce was just Sriracha sauce drizzled on top, so really you could make this at home. The drizzle was a bit weak too and I was hoping for a home made spicy sauce.
  • It was the same idea as avocado, eggs, toast and Tabasco sauce, a common brunch in Southern parts of the States or even California.

Full English Breakfast3/6

  • Myers of Keswick sausages, eggs, bacon, beans, roasted tomato $15
  • This was a very English breakfast. I personally love beans, so I did like this, but the beans were very plain and I expected them to be dressed up and more gourmet.
  • Even if they were cooked in bacon or had a touch of maple or something, but they were just plain beans in a tomato sauce and they were a bit soft and overcooked.
  • The bacon was crispy and salty and that was good. It was better than your typical diner bacon and quite thick sliced.
  • The Myers of Keswick sausages are a famous brand of English sausages, but I wasn’t too keen on them.
  • The sausages didn’t really seem like sausages as odd as that sounds. They were creamy and almost mashed and I was hoping for a meatier texture and stronger pork flavour. They were very soft like mashed potatoes.
  • The egg was requested over easy and they actually just fried an egg and flipped the egg white over top of the yolk. It was still good, but not my idea of over easy.
  • Overall I found it pricey for what it was, without the gourmet aspect.

Duck Egg Soft Scramble3.5/6

  • Dorset cheese, summer squash, maitake mushrooms $13
  • This was the only item that would be trickier to make at home if anything, and not even, but I did enjoy it the most.
  • It was just scrambled eggs, cheese, squash and mushrooms scrambled together over arugula.
  • It was almost like a salad.
  • The scrambled eggs were well made though and the flavour was there. Parts of the egg were dry, but most of it was silky although I never oppose to eggs that are a bit less cooked and runny.
  • There was some creamy salty cheese and chives and this would be impressive for a diner, but for a gourmet brunch, it was mediocre.
  • I could have used some cherry tomatoes to give it colour and acidify, but it was what it was.

Duck Fat Chips3/6

  • $8
  • Duck fat chips are always good, and these were good, but they certainly get better.
  • These were thick cut and I found them quite starchy and dry although well seasoned. I couldn’t taste the duck fat in this, which is quite common.
  • They were just regular skin on Idaho Russet potatoes, which I don’t know if I’d consider that local…
  • They were a bit crispy, but crispy is not the first texture to come to mind as much as starchy was.
  • I prefer Kennebec potatoes, Red Potatoes, or even Yukon Golds, and perhaps double frying them wouldn’t hurt.
  • It was served with a house made ketchup with horseradish in it so it reminded me of cocktail sauce, but it wasn’t very spicy and much more ketchup based.

Warm Banana Bread & Butter3/6

  • $8
  • The banana bread was home made, but nothing particularly special or memorable.
  • It was warm, moist and sweet with little chunks of banana throughout.
  • The crust was soft and it wasn’t too sweet or dessert like.
  • It wasn’t very oily either, and it didn’t have many other warm spices going on and it was quite basic.
  • I liked that they served it with a tangy and sweet fresh apple butter puree spread and that impressed me more than the actual banana bread.

[geotag]

The Fat Radish on Urbanspoon

4 Comments

  • Linda says:

    how come no one has commented yet?!?! and what is up with nyc and their hidden signs lol

    mmm the spicy egg dish looks great – especially that perfectly cooked egg yolk shot you have up there :) i wish the avocado had a bit more kick to it and was less guacamole like.. the english breakfast looks yummy too but for $15, i expected a bit more – i kinda hoped that their sausages would be homemade :)

    not sure if i’d hit this place up when i get to nyc, which is fine because all your other restaurant recommendations will keep me busy :)

  • Mijune says:

    @linda – I know!! I hope you find all these places ok! The sausages are really popular in the UK, so I can understand why they used them… they’re like a “real taste of home” kind of thing…oh I have so many more recs to give you… I’ve barely scratched the surface!! Thanks for being my one comment lol.

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