First Look: Lowlife Opens on the Lower East Side on Monday

Alums from Blanca and Mas (farmhouse) team up
November 12, 2015
by Kelly Dobkin

Photos by Evan Sung

The gist: Chef Alex Leonard, former chef de cuisine of Blanca, and owner Hugh Crickmore, former partner of Mas (farmhouse), have joined forces to open Lowlife on the Lower East Side this Monday. 

Lamb tartare with shrimp salt and mint

The food: Leonard, whose impressive resume includes stints at Noma, L20, Corton and most recently, Blanca, fuses a seasonal approach with inspiration from Japanese culinary techniques, evident in dishes like the robata-grilled yakitori-style Sasso chicken with charred scallions. Other mains include a squab escabeche with house-pickled fall vegetables and scallops with romanesco and lemongrass (pictured below). Much of the restaurant's produce comes directly from Neversink Organic Farms in the Catskills, which is owned by Crickmore's brother. Breads come from Roberta's in Brooklyn. Check out the full menu below. 

Squab escabeche with house-pickled fall vegetables and scallops with romanesco and lemongrass

The wine: The 150-bottle list offers selections mostly from France and the U.S. with 20 wines available by the glass, some of which are rare vintages Crickmore has collected at auctions. 

Herring and sardine, pine nut and chimichurri

The space: The 70-seat space has a mid-century modern feel with exposed brick walls, Jens Risom chairs, yellow pinewood tables, and a blue vintage aluminum chandelier. A 10-seat bar and a 10-seat chef's counter provide additional seating options; the latter with a view of the action in the kitchen. The walls are lined with sconces and artwork from Angel Otero and Rebecca Chamberlain along with an original Robert Rauschenberg lithograph (Crickmore has art-world connections.)  

Eucalyptus panna cotta with grapes and pears

The details: 178 Stanton Street; 212-257-0509


lower east side