Brussels on the Bowery
Friday, March 22, 2013
Richard Kuo has spent his fair share of time in different kitchens. He’s tried his hand at Austrian cooking at Seäsonal, dabbled in French fare at Corton, and, most recently, experimented with Scandinavian cuisine at pop-up restaurant Frej. Now, he’s using all his eclectic cooking techniques as inspiration for a new globally-inspired restaurant on the Bowery: Pearl & Ash.
Located on the ground floor of the historic Bowery House, the narrow, dimly lit space is modern with hints of antiquity. Long, poplar wood tables line the right side, nestled under a wall made of over 600 wooden boxes, each filled with collectibles from a bygone era, including Kodak cameras and vintage vases. Facing the wall is a large bar fashioned from a darker color wood, offering an ash-like contrast to the eating area’s pearl coloring.
The menu is composed of small plates designed for sharing, and it’s split up into six different sections: raw, small, fish, meat, vegetables and sugar (think: coffee and cake, ice cream sandwich). Two standout items are the tea cured salmon with goat cheese, tamarind and seaweed and the Brussels sprouts with pearl onions, the latter of which we have the recipe for below to try at home.
To wash down the food, Pearl & Ash also has an extensive wine list with over one thousand bottles. And if for some reason you can’t find one you like, there’s also a selection of cocktails with Bowery-inspired names, like Murder on the Ebullient Express and The Alley The Icewagon.
Brussels Sprouts with Chinese Five-Spice and Pearl Onions
1/3 lbs brussels — halved
1/8 lbs white pearl onions — skins peeled
1/8 cup buttermilk
2 tsp lemon juice
3 tbs chinese five spice mixture
1/3 cup chicken stock
1/2 tbs salt
Chives — finely chopped
Halve the brussels sprouts and heavy sear on a hot pan until light to dark brown, add a light sprinkle of the five spice mixture and some chicken stock until the brussels have a slight bite to them. Repeat the process with the pearl onions. Season both brussels and pearl onions generously. Dress with buttermilk, lemon juice and chives to finish.
Pearl & Ash is located at 220 Bowery between Prince and Spring Streets
By Claire Stern
Photo credits: Courtesy of Pearl & Ash