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Bo's Kitchen & Bar

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Has anyone tried this new New Orleans-style place on W. 24th St. yet?

http://bosrestaurant.com/

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  1. This post I started two months ago got no hits, so I'll report back that, after seeing that Bo's recently was added to Eater's Manhattan Heatmap (http://ny.eater.com/archives/2014/01/...), I finally tried the place last night and was quite pleased.

    My friend and I shared a fresh fall greens salad, a hamachi crudo appetizer, and spiced Louisiana redfish. First I'll report that this was more than enough food for the two of us. The fish was the highlight. Beautifully prepared and served in a very light cream sauce with parsnip and chunks of crabmeat. (Those familiar with New Orleans-style haute creole cooking will know that fish served with a creamy crabmeat dressing is not at all uncommon, but this preparation was much more delicate than what I'm used to being served in New Orleans. In fact, I was concerned that my friend, who is a very light eater, would shy away from the fish because of the cream sauce, but she loved it, too. Bottom line: don't let the cream sauce scare you away.

    )

    The salad was crisp and yummy. Of note: the horseradish dressing tasted like horseradish. Although the kitchen shows a nice light touch -- the salad was far from overly dressed -- this shows me that they don't shy away from bold flavors.

    The crudo was very good too, beautiful cuts of hamachi served on top of a bold sauce of pureed fruits with some seasoning and crunchy vegetables (sorry, I don't remember which fruits, vegetables or seasoning). Some may find the sauce overpowering for the hamachi, but it was easy to eat the fish with as much (or as little) of the sauce as one wanted.

    The place has a nice vibe, but was not overly loud. We were able to have a relaxed conversation without screaming (seems a rarity these days).

    I think this is gonna be a winner, and look forward to giving it another try soon, perhaps, in keeping with the New Orleans theme, before the Cowboy Mouth show at B.B. Kings on January 25 (http://www.bbkingblues.com/bio.php?id...)!

    5 Replies
    1. re: Blumie

      I am sending a competent Tulane alumnus as a scout/spy over there in a few weeks. he is a veteran of the NOLA-in-New York wars and I should get good cavalry reports.

      1. re: hazelhurst

        Bo's is NOT a New Orleans restaurant in New York. It's a New Orleans influenced restaurant, and those influences can be pretty subtle. (In my original post, I called it "New Orleans style," which I now know to be inaccurate. There's no attempt here to be a Commander's or a Clancy's or a Brigtsen's.) Having attended Tulane or otherwise having lived in New Orleans may give you a better sense of what those influences are, but if your scout is coming to make a determination of "authenticness," the mission is doomed.

        1. re: Blumie

          Well, the "influence" is his assignment. And he knows his way around gin fizz..I taught him. I cannot tell much from the menu. But "twists" and "influences" are ubiquitous these days and often seem to me to be will of the wisps.( I think of Danube and its Astro-Hungarian "influence.")

          We've all seen "New Orleans" stuff in new York and elsewhere. Some work, some don't. I am just curious to see tha these guys are up to.

          Some of the New Stuff here in new Orleans is mystifying as well.

          1. re: hazelhurst

            Most New Orleans-style restaurants in NYC have been total flops, IMHO. There used to be a place on Broadway a couple of blocks north of Houson -- it may have been called Lafayette -- that I used to like, but I can't remember if I liked it because it was good or because I was young and stupid. Same for Delta 88, which used to be on 8th Avenue just south of MSG. (I still have a t-shirt from there in my archives!) I like Bo's, but because the food is good in its own right, not because it succeeds in an attempt to replicate what you would find in classic haute Creole restaurants in NOLA. As to the new stuff going down in NOLA, count me a huge fan, a sign, IMHO, of the NOLA restaurant scene maturing.

            1. re: Blumie

              Well, as I said, I am curious as to what the New Orleans aspect (influence..chose the term) is. Redfish I see..OK..Gin Fizzes..OK...but I am at a loss to divine from the printed word what is going on which is why I have deputized a scout of trustworthy reconnaissance skill.

              I remember a place pre-Prudhomme assault on Lex that I have written of before..it was a travesty. There was an affront to Man and God near the Hudson, fairly far down, that was an early crawfish provider. It was one of those famous open-and-close places. But I have also seen "Louisiana Inspired" places and wondered wh)at-in-Hell was the "Louisiana" part of the joint apart from corruption.
              I am glad that Bo's food is good and only am wondering how the New Orleans element gets into it.(I looked at the bios on the website and saw that one fellow was at NY ACME but did not note anyone ever spending time down here...just wondering. Anyone can cook this stuff anywhere...the trick is the aspect.)

              I am glad you like some of the new stuff although I do not see that as maturation. It is change, one way or the other.
              Good food is good food no matter what...but I tire of relishes, slaws and a hitherto-unheard-of paste/spice to accompany your Boudin de Campange with Louisiana Roasted Satsuma aioli. My cookbook shelf groans with 40 + year-old books covering the New Spices.

              As ever, there is a need to stand out. We'll see how many of the new guys can make a mile-forty week after week. The place that runs a good six furlongs throught the meet is going to be a long term winner.

              Just my view but I am hopeful thse places do well

    2. Checked menu, seems pricey.

      5 Replies
      1. re: Stuartmc910

        Clearly not a cheap eats kinda place, but I find it hard to describe a NYC restaurants offering entrees in the high $20s as "pricey."

        1. re: Blumie

          Totally agree. In fact, I went to the website after I read your review & thought "oh! pretty reasonable!" Lol, it's all relative. Btw, thanks for the review.

          I read all the staff bios & didn't see where anyone had a direct connection to New Orleans- unless I missed it. Not an issue, just curious.

          1. re: VaPaula

            I'm not familiar with the background of the staff, but I do think it's important to emphasize that while Bo's is New Orleans influenced, it's not going to satisfy someone looking to recreate their experience at Commander's Palace or Galatoire's or Mr. B's, or any of New Orleans's other iconic restaurants. Which is not intended as a criticism, it's just not what they're trying to do. (That said, were Bo's to open in New Orleans, I think it would be warmly received -- especially as the restaurant scene in New Orleans has evolved and matured in recent years. I don't think anyone would say, "What the f*#! is this?!?!")

            1. re: Blumie

              Understood. Plus I had gathered that already by looking at the menu.

              Evolved & matured, indeed - and thank goodness for that! As a former resident (and about to visit in a few weeks), I'm pleased to have the kinds of choices that exist now and not just iconic ones - which have, and always will have, their place, of course.

              1. re: VaPaula

                Exactly. In my most recent visits, I have been able to mix the new (Sylvain, Cane & Table), the new-but-not-so-new-anymore (Stella!, Bacchanal), and the iconic (Clancy's, Brigtsen's), as well as some new casual comfort food places (Dat Dog (hot dogs), District (sliders, donuts and great coffee)). Such a treat.

      2. Just tried last night.. Eh. The layout was pretty nice, a bit noisy, but manageable. Just didn't really like the food. Ordered the fluke crude, which was the best of the night-- nice touch of a dried okra on top which added a little crunch and the hot sauce, mushrooms were good.

        Other items disappointed- corn angolotti appetizer was just bland-- really had no flavor, supposed to be cooked in brown butter sauce, but the pasta was dry as was the grilled corn.

        Final disappointment-- torn pasta rags with pork ragu. One of the blandest dishes tasted in a while, pasta itself was cooked nicely, and nice chunks of pork, but there was no flavor at all.

        Was disappointed as lots of stuff on the menu looked appealing, perhaps just hit it on an off night, but for a New Orleans style place, they need to throw a little salt and seasoning into the food! Won't go back at this point.

        1. Tried this place Saturday night. Had the Country Ham app with apricot marmalade, really good country ham. Delicious but the biscuit provided was REALLY small. Like ping pong ball size.

          The redfish with crabby sauce was delicious with okra, parsnips and persimmons (lots of crab). Hubby had the steak with smoked mashed potatoes and that entree was dreamy. Portions were not big but not too small either.

          Cocktails were solid & interesting though pricey. Service was attentive but not pushy. We would dine there again.

          1. Friends asked us to join them for dinner at Bo’s on Saturday night. They had a trio featuring blues harmonica legend Phil Wiggins with no cover.
            Nice bar area when you walk in and lot’s of nice people that greet you. We were seated on time (7:15 reservation/music started at 7:30) and then got down to ordering.
            My wife and I always share so I got to taste the following: crispy chicken livers w/fried onions and apricot pepper jam, fried bay scallops w/chili aioli, roasted trout with broccolini, olives and a light pomegranate-tomato vinaigrette and the grilled skirt steak with smoked mashed potatoes. The steak had an interesting, somewhat smoky rub on it and was grilled to perfection. For the quality of food, unique flavors, service and yes, price, I was very impressed. We definitely plan to visit Bo’s again soon.
            Regards, JK