August 15, 2012 § Leave a comment

Dinner at Kinshop with Cahill girls began with a bottle of crisp white wine, a perfect pairing with the brightly-flavored meal to come…

Starters included a (very) spicy duck laab salad with toasted rice, ground chili and romaine hearts. Acidity from fish sauce, rich meatiness from the duck, and cool freshness from the lettuce – so many different elements playing off each other in a seemingly simple dish.

Our second starter were the grilled prawns with fresh lime and “Phuket-style” black pepper sauce. Loved sucking on those brain-filled shrimp heads a la Anthony Bourdain, and the sauce was so good that we kept it for other dishes.

This fried pork and crispy oyster salad with celery, peanuts, mint and chili-lime vinaigrette was probably the dish I was most excited about (based on reviews) and yet, it thrilled me the least when I finally tried it. Don’t get me wrong, it was still mighty tasty but I think the flavors didn’t meld together as well here as in other dishes.

This was the runaway favorite – fried broccoli and Chinese sausage with young coconut-gooseberry chutney and fermented plum vinegar. Yes, the broccoli is fried so it’s probably lost all its health qualities, but none of us cared. It was surprisingly light and ever-so-crisp and went so well with the tartness of the plum vinegar and sweetness of the chutney. And who’s going to complain about Chinese sausage with their vegetables?

My favorite main plate – Northern Thai style curry noodle with braised brisket, cucumber, peanuts, fresh herbs. So comforting, so complex. This is something I’d want to eat on a rainy day while watching television on the couch. Definitely better than a burger and fries.

Our second main – massaman: braised goat with fried shallots, purple yams, mustard greens, and toasted coconut – a very rich dish with tender goat, lots of greens (there’s our fiber for the day) and an amazing coconut brothy concoction. Roti was the ideal vehicle to mop up any remaining sauce.

Desserts: Thai iced tea ice cream, lychee sorbet, coconut cream cake with kaffir lime syrup and toasted coconut. The coconut cake was somewhat bland, but we all fell hard for the ice cream and sorbet, the lychee sorbet especially. It reminded me of being in China, where we’d eat bowl after bowl of that fleshy, sweet fruit.

Top Chef fame aside (the owner and chef is Harold Dieterle, winner of Season 1), this is a great, casual place for a dinner that features a spin on your classic Thai and Southeast-Asian cuisine.

469 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10011


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