With my 1st Birthday as the Ubereater fast approaching, I wanted to post a 1-year-old review of West Village American cuisine juggernaut The Little Owl, which I composed for my Company's Quarterly Newsletter. I will be returning to the 'Owl this fall for a second time, and will definitely write an updated review. I thought it was interesting to read, and good reminder that there was a time when I actually went out to eat and didn't take pictures of the food. Thoughts?...
Anchored on a notoriously quiet
It is with that generalization in mind, and only after devouring just enough bread dipped in extra virgin olive oil to ensure post-meal pain, that we ordered. We opted for the Gravy Meatball Sliders and the Ricotta Cavatelli in Brodo. Served as three individual mini-burgers made from a dazzling combination of beef, pork, veal and parmesan cheese, the meatball sliders were moist, perfectly packed, and throbbing with flavor, making the $10 price tag well worth it. In fact prior to ordering, our server mentioned it was popular for couples to add an extra slider to the order so as to make sure each gets an equal share. Me, being known for making poor decisions at times, decided against the extra slider, only to regret it later. Still, the lesson was learned and next time I’ll order 8, all for myself. As I pondered how many sliders I could eat, we swiftly shifted to the Chef’s fluffy homemade Ricotta Cavatelli in Brodo, which featured plump, homemade cavatelli pasta, stuffed with ricotta cheese, resting in a tomato broth that was as simple as it was delicious. So good in fact, that I had no choice but to drink the remaining broth from the dish. (I used a spoon of course.)
Before I had time to moan over eating too much bread, our entrees arrived. My girlfriend’s aptly named, “Crispy Chicken” arrived as a robust, broiled half-chicken that was quickly finished skin-side down in the pan, to create a peppery light and crunchy outside skin to encapsulate some of the juiciest white and dark meat chicken I’ve ever encountered. I simply did not know chicken could taste so good. As much as I wanted to revel in the simple goodness of the “Crispy Chicken”, “The Pork Chop”, as it reads on the menu, lie before me, presented as a pan-seared double-cut chop, crusted lightly with black pepper and accompanied by butter beans mixed with shaved parmesan.
As easy as it is to overcook chicken, it is even easier to ruin a thick pork chop, and as you would expect, the guys in the kitchen clearly understood this. Cooked somewhere between medium and medium rare as pork should be, the chop was tender, buttery, and undoubtedly flaunted the Chef’s fervent attention to properly seasoning everything he sends to the dining room. The al dente butter beans were a nice break from the pork, maintaining a firm, yet creamy texture that encouraged you to finish the pork, as opposed to preventing you from eating the rest of it. For dessert you would be silly not to order the Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp, which is a warm, and toasty compilation of fresh strawberries, rhubarb, buttery crumbs of dough, and mascarpone sweet cream that will make you ask yourself, “why don’t I eat more Rhubarb?”