Look for P*Ong in April, Okay? These Things Take TimeP*Ong, the long-awaited all-dessert restaurant from former Spice Market pastry chef Pichet Ong, has been delayed yet again. Previously we had heard that the date was set for this week. Now, Ong tells us, he’s looking at mid-April. There’s final painting to be done, juicers and dehydrators still to come in, a sanitation inspection yet to be passed, and other typically troublesome details. “I’m doing all this by myself,” says the chef, who studied design at Berkeley and is laying out the restaurant. “But I kind of wanted to so that next time I’ll really know how to open a restaurant. The Department of Buildings has been my worry. So many restaurants have opened illegally, either applying for permits afterward or being grandfathered in; we want everything to be just right from the first day.”
Ask a Waiter
Eve Dunlop of Lovely Day Insists Her Customers Aren’t HipstersLaura Dunlop worked at a pizza-and-pasta mill before coming to Lovely Day, the diminutive Nolita standby for cheap, fanciful Thai. In the two years she’s been there, the 40-seat canteen has evolved from an under-the-radar hangout for local boutique owners and artists to a genuine destination. “It’s a little sad,” she says. “Because we don’t get to spend as much time with each table.” We asked her about the place’s bohemian following, her method of dealing with obnoxious customers, and rumors of full-frontal nudity inside the restaurant.
In the Magazine
Fork-Crushed Potatoes: More Than Meets the UtensilIf there’s one rule about the weekly In Season recipe in the magazine’s Strategist section that we try to adhere to, it’s to keep things simple. This is due not only to limited space considerations, but also to the fact that we are of the let-the-ingredient-speak-for-itself school of cooking. Put another way, we’re lazy and hate cleaning up after ourselves. Still, this week’s recipe for fork-crushed Purple Majesty potatoes, courtesy of Gramercy Tavern’s Michael Anthony, was so exceptionally simple (yet undeniably delicious), it had people around the office talking. “This really couldn’t be much easier, could it?” said one admitted foodie, with a haughty note of reproof in her voice. Another cranky copy editor was more direct: “Even a small and not very gifted child can crush potatoes with a fork,” he said.
De Marco’s May Close Forever; Let Them Make Foie Gras!The Department of Health rampage claims its most eminent victim yet: the venerable Brasserie LCB (formerly known as La Cote Basque). Apparently chef Jean-Jacques Rachou had a few things to say to the inspectors when they arrived. [NYP]
According to the owner’s father, DiFara legend Dom De Marco, De Marco’s Pizza may close permanently in the wake of the recent shooting. [NYP]
A more palatable way of making foie gras: Let the geese gorge themselves. [BBC via Chow]