Save Your Appetite, It’s Frugal Friday

Goodlifer: Save Your Appetite, It's Frugal Friday

Hard times call for desperate measures. At NYC eatery Craft, executive chef Damon Wise has taken matters into his own hands and created a menu where nothing costs more than $10. Damon: Frugal Friday is a riff off his boss Tom Colicchio‘s Tom: Tuesday Dinner, it is held in the same space — the private dining room adjacent to the restaurant — and takes no reservations.

We arrived around six o’clock on the premiere Friday and had to wait about 45 minutes to be seated. The tiny bar area was crowded with people also waiting for a table. Drinks are all also under $10, and a glass of Cava ($10) made the wait much more bearable.

Colicchio & Wise, perhaps crafting new recipies. Image by Metromix.

Colicchio & Wise, culinary forces behind Craft. Image by Metromix New York.

The menu is decidedly experimental, and features a separate section for Offal ($9), which may be a bit hard to stomach (no pun intended) for some. But in the name of sustainability, it’s good practice to not let any part of an animal go to waste. My dining companion tried the Crispy Pig Ear and spoke highly of it. The other categories are Snacks ($5), Salads ($5), Pizzas ($7), Food in a Jar ($5), Meat on a Stick ($4), Small Plates ($8), Cheese ($6) and Dessert ($5). My standout favorites were the Fresh Ricotta, Black Cabbage & Truffle Vinaigrette pizza, the Arugula & Pink Peppercorn Vinaigrette salad, the Warm East Coast Oysters with Chartreuse-Hazelnut Butter and the Black Bass Crudo with Meyer Lemon Gelée & Fennel Pollen. My carnivorous dining mate’s faves were the Flat Iron Steak with Preserved Tomatoes & Cabrales Cheese, the Escargot with Smoked Bacon & Celery Root, and the Salt Cod Fritters with Caper Berries & Piquillo Marmalade. For dessert we had the Profiteroles that were just OK, and the Robiola Cheese with Endive and Pumpkin Marmalade, which was really good.

Craft's private dining room turned haven of frugality.

Craft’s private dining room turned haven of frugality.

Although a great concept, the name of this dinner party is somewhat deceiving. Menu items come in small portions and the waiter recommended ordering about 4-5 per person. Our bill was just over $100, which also included four glasses of wine. For a great culinary experience in NYC, that must still be considered on the frugal side.

About author
A designer by trade, Johanna has always had a passion for storytelling. Born and raised in Sweden, she's lived and worked in Miami, Brooklyn and, currently, Ojai, CA. She started Goodlifer in 2008 to offer a positive outlook for the future and share great stories, discoveries, thoughts, tips and reflections around her idea of the Good Life. Johanna loves kale, wishes she had a greener thumb, and thinks everything is just a tad bit better with champagne (or green juice).
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