Casa Mono


52 Irving Place, New York

Phone: 212-253-2773

If you love food and you live in NYC, you have probably eaten at Mario Batali's Tapas Restaurant Casa Mono long time before we did. I don't know why it took so long, probably because I always call to make reservations for bigger groups and for dinners on weekends? I am sick of hearing them telling me "we are all booked" so many times, I decided to be more "kiasu", and made reservation one month ahead, and it worked!

When we finally ate at the restaurant last week, I really only liked one dish and one dessert - the fried sardines and the plum brandy ice cream. The Bacalao Croquetas, Cockles, Cock Combs, Lamb's Tongue, Whole Grilled Trout and Setas that we ordered, were really just alright. No, actually the Setas was TOO SALTY that I have to drink water to flush it down. Perhaps it was because we went crazy and ordered mainly exotic dishes such as cockles, cock combs and lamb's tongue, instead of ordering the more regular and "normal" dishes such as duck, steak and chicken, that we didn't get to taste the actual good dishes? But our friend Oi Yen, who had been to Casa Mono before, agreed that the food was not as good as it used to be.

Maybe this is a case of an ambitious chef trying to do too many things at the same time, having so many restaurants in the city under his belt, doing cooking shows, writing books etc. The only Mario Batali restaurant that Gan and I really liked is perhaps Babbo, but even with that, we thought the food was salty. And Lupa was a waste of money; we rather line up an hour at Tomoe Sushi next door, than eating there next time. But maybe the "normal" food at Casa Mono might taste better, since so many people raved about the restaurants. So I am not counting it out, just yet. We will go back and give it another try, but probably not anytime soon.

waiting for a table patiently with my yaokui friends

Sardinas Fritas

Lamb's Tongue with Mint Alioli

Cockles with Huevos Revueltos and Summer Squash

Quail with Figs

Grilled Whole Trout with Tomatoes Vinaigrette

Bacalao Croquetas with Orange Alioli

Cock's combs with Cepes - tasted like mushrooms

Plum Brandy Ice Cream Arrope and Almonds

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