Dear Food Diary:
Like abc kitchen, abc cocina is a beautifully decorated space within abc carpet & home store.
Jean George plays with latin flavors, while adding his own twist. Flavorful tapas and small plates style menu, meant to be shared.
Jamon Iberico de Bellota
One of my favorite things to eat in the whole world. Seriously, as part of my last meal on earth, I would like a pound of this. Paper think slices of this Spanish gem just melted in my mouth. The intense and unmistakable cured meat starts salty and ends with a smooth as jazz finish with a touch of sweetness. The flavor lingers, like a love affair for the palate.
I do wish they served it hand cut instead. The texture gets lost.
Baby Calamari Stuffed with chorizo, tomato salad and chickpeas
The tender pockets of baby calamari have a nice chard/grilled flavor on the outside, perfect enough to have on its own. But add that spicy meaty center and you’ve got a new version of surf and turf in my book. The salad is nicely dressed, good acidity. A must order.
Sauteed Mushroom Tacos with mole, kale and lime
The mushrooms were meaty, full of butter flavor and natural umami. But the juices made the taco a little wet, big no no, though saved by the combo of rich luscious mole and crunchy kale mix. Very earthy and bold with a hint of sweetness. I don’t say this often, but I didn’t miss meat at all.
Crispy Fish Sandwich with black olive tartar sauce, chilies and arugula
The most filling of our dishes. Nicely toasted bread, fish fried beautifully. Crispy, golden brown exterior and a moist center. The toppings had everything from spicy, peppery to tart and creamy. A great sandwich overall.
I loved the designs from their menu to the walls. Like abc kitchen, this is a great place for a date or a girls night out. Prices are up there, so it does add up for someone with a big appetite.
The food was flavorful and memorable. I’ll be back very pronto.
P.S. Chubby’s Rating:
38 East 19th St.