The Redhead in NYC is a Jewel Among East Village Restaurants
Like all dutiful sweet/salt fiends, we’ve devoured bowls and bowls of the Redhead’s NYC justly-famous Bacon Peanut Brittle, mostly while sipping cocktails at what practically defines a “friendly neighborhood bar.” This is how the East Village’s Redhead story began, after all: for nearly a year after opening in 2007, The Redhead’s talented, big-hearted chef Meg Grace only prepared bar snacks, as well as one meal a week, her Thursday night pre-fixe suppers. Grace has since expanded her Southern-comfort, ingredient-driven menu, and the Redhead in East Village has become a vital “friendly neighborhood bar AND restaurant”. But it took Frank Bruni’s glowing one-star review in The New York Times–the last one he filed, ending a five-year stint as the most influential restaurant critic in town–for us to finally get off our bar stool and sit down in the back for some dinner. And we’re happy to report that the east village restaurant offers not just a great New York City story, it also serves up some pretty great food.
The RedHead in NYC Goes Beyond the Brittle
In addition to the addictive Bacon Peanut Brittle, we can also whole-heartedly recommend the Summer Bean Salad. Yes, like the season itself, it won’t be around much longer, but this dish exemplifies everything we like about The Redhead. The crisp green and yellow beans are farmers’-market fresh and bright, the generous chunks of Smithfield ham sweet and smoky, the farm egg perfectly prepared, the hazelnut-sherry vinaigrette sharp and lively, and the unadvertised deep-fried brioche, hidden beneath the roughage, intense and buttery and wholly satisfying. Clearly, this is food prepared with love..
Redhead NYC more than delivers with its entrees as well. Fried Chicken is this year’s must-have menu addition, it seems, so we decided to try The Redhead’s East Village version. The result? An unqualified success. The generously proportioned bird was juicy and alive with flavor; the peppery buttermilk breading crisp and light, and it all was nicely accompanied by sides of moist corn bread as well as a vinegary spinach and strawberry salad. We will definitely be back to the East Village’s Redhead restaurant, and soon, to see what Meg Grace is cooking up for Fall.
The Redhead restaurant NYC details
The Redhead is located on 13th Street between Second and First Avenues. The bar is open every day from 4:00 p.m. until 2:00 a.m.; dinner is served Monday through Saturday from 5:30 p.m. until 11:00 p.m., and a late night menu takes over until 1:00 a.m. For more details, a complete menu, and ordering info for jars of that Bacon Peanut Brittle, visit the Redhead online, here.