April 20, 2009

Curry-ya - Is Gourmet Curry an Oxymoron?

Curry-Ya10th between 1st and 2nd Ave is another block chock full of interesting eateries.

On my way to Momofuku and then back again to Chikalicious Dessert Club, I have passed by Curry-ya many a time. Finally, a couple weeks ago I stopped in to taste what they deem to be "gourmet curry."

Upon entering Curry-ya, I couldn't help but feel a bit of deja-vu. The decor certainly takes a page out of David Chang's Momofuku playbook. But to be fair, lots of restaurants are copying his style including Mercadito Cantina.

It's the Chang signature clean counter, flat wooden stools and open kitchen - I don't blame them...it certainly seems to work by giving an otherwise casual takeout joint a feeling of freshness that implies it deserves an extra premium.

The menu is simple - curry with your choice of protein - anything from Berkshire pork cutlet, organic chicken, to grilled seafood. I chose the Grilled Seafood Curry and requested a medium level of spiciness. Each dish is prepared in the open kitchen and cooked and served in your own personal pot. How cute. But is the cuteness worth the premium?

While the curry was tasty, I am not sure my taste buds are advanced enough to really discern a true differentiation from the Golden Curry packs I have been making since college. And at $16 bucks, I expected more than just 1 shrimp, 2 scallops and a couple pieces of squid.

While Curry-ya definitely has a certain level of charm not found in most fast-food curry joints...the food falls a little short given its relatively high price point. Unfortunately it does not taste that different from the offerings your neighborhood takeout place offers.

As an alternative...walk to 3rd Avenue and pick up some cheap Golden Curry packs from m2m. At that low price point you can afford to go crazy on some fresh seafood from Whole Foods and you got yourself a meal.
(picture from TimeOut)

214 East 10th St. New York, NYC 10003

m2m Japanese Market
55 3rd Ave. New York, NYC 10003

No comments:

Copyright © 2009. All rights reserved.