Springtime at ABC Kitchen

Here's a spring snapshot from ABC Kitchen, shared by kathryn:

• Crab toast with lemon aioli: A knockout on the long list of "market table" dishes and other starters. High-quality ingredients (especially the excellent crab) and rich, creamy aioli set it apart. "I ate this very slowly to make it last longer. Delicious!" kathryn sighs.

• Snap pea salad: This dish of sweet, crisp peas, slivered and balanced atop endive leaves and dressed with Parmesan, embodies the seasonal ethos at ABC, the year-old locavore entry from Jean-Georges Vongerichten (Jean Georges, Perry St, etc.). In a similar vein, a special of roasted fiddleheads with crispy spring onions was tender and agreeably grassy, "really tasty and springlike."

• Fried chicken: A near-miss among the entrées, this was half a deboned organic chicken, breaded and fried, served with mashed potatoes, spicy gravy, and gingery sautéed bok choy. The chicken was quite good, especially the juicy dark meat, but the dish was "a little crazy" overall—especially the somewhat overbearing gravy, which "started out spicy then turned very smoky, and had more of a barbecue sauce flavor at the end."

• Sundae with salted-caramel ice cream, caramel corn, and candied peanuts: "Salty and sweet and chocolatey. Nice contrast of flavors and textures and temperatures. I really enjoyed putting together bites of the ice cream with a nice crunchy peanut and puffy caramel corn, covered in chocolate sauce. Wonderful!"

• Ambiance: The restaurant is inside the ABC Carpet & Home store, which shows in the mismatched lighting, high felt-covered chairs, and "grandma" bread plates. "It felt like we were dining in an ABC Carpet catalog the whole time," kathryn observes.

ABC Kitchen [Flatiron]
35 E. 18th Street (between Broadway and Park Avenue South), Manhattan
212-475-5829

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