In NYC, nothing good stays underground for long. (Thank you, Twitter, prime-time CW soaps.)
This won’t be the case with David Burke Kitchen: The modern locavore joint opens tomorrow in a rustically transformed basement (The James New York’s).
Start with cocktails and inventive bar food (wild ’shrooms, goat cheese, and bacon tarts) in a glass tree house before hitting the bunkered dining room. Playful dishes like cuttlefish and laughing bird shrimp bathed in lime yogurt, and pretzel crab cakes come first. Pressed, head-on prawns over pasta; extravagantly skewered, hay-roasted whole chicken; and black bass with market veggies round out the mains.
The space itself is a paradox (industrial and bucolic; sophisticated yet cozy) with repurposed barn planks, a carving station, denim banquettes, and large Orwellian portraits of local farmers who supply the kitchen. (Better clean your plate.)
With spring comes a patio, herb garden, and in-house apiary. Which, all things considered, should create some buzz.
David Burke Kitchen, 23 Grand Street, at Thompson Street (212-201-9119 or davidburkekitchen.com).
Photo: Janelle Jones