Dirt Candy is Amanda Cohen’s little gem. Actually, Dirt Candy is not so little anymore. This past February Amanda opened her new location on Bowery in NYC. The place is way bigger, has a bar area and a brand new tipping policy (no tipping allowed, there is a 20% admin fee on each bill that will be redistributed to the staff).
Everything on the Dirt Candy menu is vegetarian and can be made vegan (except for 1 or 2 side dishes and desserts). With the new location, also came a new menu that takes things to the next level. Although I loved the old menu, I always found it a bit starch heavy and just a bit heavy in general. This is not the case with Amanda’s latest creations, that really put a diversity of veggies in the center of attention. Most dishes are a vegan take on non-plant based recipes; they are playful, creative and well balanced.
Even if you did not make a reservation three months in advance, you can try to get a table if you just show up and put your name down, although the wait can easily be until 9pm. I would suggest going as early as possible to increase your odds of getting a table, such as before 6pm. There is also always the option of hoping for the best, and perhaps luck out at a spot at the bar where you can observe the chefs preparing dish after dish, and probably spot Amanda hard at work alongside her staff.
When I tried out to the new location for the first time, I was amazed by the menu. I decided to skip my usual Jalapeno Hush Puppies and try out the Korean Fried Broccoli. The description on the menu just says ‘it’s crack in broccoli form’ and there is not much I can add to this statement.
Next up: Brussels Sprout Tacos. They are absolutely great to share and fun to build. I loved the lightness as they come with lettuce instead of the usual taco shells. Finally I went for the ‘Carrot’. This main dish comes with pickled jerk carrots, peanut mole and carrot waffles. One might think that is an overdose of carrots but the truth is the flavors are all different and very complementary. I am also a big fan of the waffles: so sweet and fluffy. This time, I was too full for dessert but the celery cheesecake roll and the corn cake looked fantastic.
Also, Amanda just launched her amazing brunch menu. Stay tuned for a brunch review coming soon 🙂