I have a new favorite restaurant in Manhattan in Lower East Side called Fat Radish. I have been going to this restaurant every few weeks since they opened on Orchard Street about a year ago. The space is tight but attractive in cool combination of artfully rundown urban loft and rustic barn. The clientele is mostly young creative types even though I have been noticing more and more destination diners recently. Accordingly, the price, though not cheap, would not break your bank and a good value for the quality of the food.
The menu changes seasonally with the emphasis on the “farm to table” eating with a certain British influences. I especially appreciate this restaurant for its extensive vegetable dishes, which makes this one of the nicest places to go out with my many vegetarian friends. My absolute favorite is their vegetable pot pies that change seasonally: in the spring, Spring Pea Pot Pie, and in the winter, Celery Root Pot Pie ($15), which are listed in the appetizer section, but it certainly is big enough for me as an entree. My typical meal there starts with Scotch Egg ($11, soft-boiled egg covered in delicious fried cheesy crust) or Deviled Brussels Sprouts ($8, bacon wrapped skewers of roasted Brussels sprouts) accompanied by a carafe of house red ($20, usually a decent fruity Côte du Rhône). The entrees here are good, especially scallop and pork chop, but I usually end up ordering a whole bunch of vegetable appetizers including the pot pie and another favorite, Beet Root Crumble ($14, a seemingly strange mix of baked beets, goat cheese and swiss chard topped with hazelnut and oats). Go with friends and enjoy before it really becomes overrun.