Charles Restaurant- ::EDIT::

21 Oct

When Mike and I went to Taste The West Village a few weeks ago, I entered into a raffle where you bid on a gift certificate to certain restaurants (it went to charity for the schools). After tasting the awesome braised short ribs at the Charles (234 West 4th Street on the corner of West 10th Street) stand, I decided it was totally worth it to bid $60 for a $75 gift certificate.  I really didn’t expect to win but it was my lucky day.

It said on the reservation email itself that photos were not allowed in the restaurant. Bummer!  I snuck some on my iPhone, however, until the light couldn’t hold out any longer. (Sorry for some of the blur)

We started the meal with some delicious flat bread and olive goo (aka tapenade).

For an app, we decided on potato gnocchi with squash, spinach, and pecorino romano. It was great.  The gnocchi was at a perfect consistency and flavor and the squash, cheese, and spinach gave it such a great, earthy flavor.  

We decided on the brussel sprouts as a side dish and they were okay, but nothing like the now infamous ones Mike and I make with pancetta (inspired by both Babbo and Guy Fieri).

I was tempted to go with the short ribs again, but when Mike said he was also leaning in that direction it opened me up to try something different. So I went with the Braised Lamb Shank which came with Israeli couscous.  It was a really marvelous dish. Great flavor to the lamb and the couscous was delicious.  I savored every bite.

The short ribs were just as good, if not better, than at the tasting.  I still think the celery root puree is too soft for the soft texture of the meat, however, it was definitely tasty.

For dessert, Mike made a good call and said the molten chocolate type cake sounded right up my alley.  WOW was it!  Perfect.

Mike went with the homemade ice cream sandwiches.  See that little bowl of warm liquid? I’m pretty sure that was nutella.  I wanted to put my entire face into that little bowl.

Overall our meal was very good.  That lamb was absolutely worth going back for.

Total Nom Points: 7.5 out of 10

EDIT:
Funny… the same day this posted, Charles was in GrubStreet: http://newyork.grubstreet.com/2009/10/charles_names_jason_zukas_as_t.html

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