This is the first post from ShopEatSleep contributor Deanna Ting, a New York-based writer and editor who hails from Los Angeles. She is a seasoned travel, lifestyle and fashion writer, having written for publications such as TravelAge West, Luxury Travel Advisor, Los Angeles magazine and WSAToday (a magazine that was entirely devoted to shoes). These days, you can find her working as a managing editor/senior editor for Incentive and Successful Meetings magazines, as well as scouring New York–and the globe–for her next favorite meal. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @deanna421.
New York City’s Plan B, an intimate tapas bar and restaurant inspired by Spain’s Basque and Barcelona regions, lives up to its name — both for better and worse. With Plan B, owner and seasoned New York restaurateur Hemant Phul (Masala Times, Earth Nightclub) has put together a restaurant that isn’t afraid to take risks — bulls testicles, anyone? — even if it sometimes stumbles in the process. All the elements are there, but it still feels like something is missing in a few of its dishes.
A case in point might be the chicharrón tuiles (pictured above): savory baked crescents of cilantro and butter wrapped around thick slices of fried pork skin. That combination of rich butter and salty pork, together with sweet garlic aioli, seems destined to be a success but, for some reason, it just misses the mark by being a bit too salty and soggy. Another example might be the hibiscus and Cynar ice cream, which was just a touch too icy and lacked a strong flavor profile.
Still, Plan B’s dedication to deliver the unexpected is something truly admirable and, if you happen to be in the Nolita neighborhood, it’s a great choice if (a) you’re feeling adventurous, (b) you have a hankering for Spanish small plates, and, (c) to be frank, aren’t entirely sure where you want to dine.