Photos by Liz Clayman
The gist: The folks behind Midtown steak emporium Quality Meats are dropping the "M" (and the fancy ambiance) to bring you Quality Eats, opening tonight in the former Whitehall space on Greenwich Avenue. The first downtown outpost for Michael Stillman's restaurant group who also owns Quality Italian and Maloney & Porcelli, the vibe here is "casual, meat-centric neighborhood restaurant."
The food: Chef Ryan Bartlow (Frankie's, Alinea) melds some Italian and Mediterranean influences into what's basically a playful steakhouse menu with starters like roasted beet tabbouleh with kambocha squash hummus; sausage and pepper toast and mains like grilled octopus; and branzino with artichoke sauce vierge. In the meat department, six beef options including a bavette cut, hanger, grilled skirt and the Don Ameche: Filet mignon with mustard-peppercorn sauce. Note: the priciest steak on the menu is $29 so this concept is meant to be more everyday and less special occasion than its competition. And of course, there's a burger which in this case is a classic patty melt on sourdough toast. Sides get creative too: scalloped sunchokes (instead of potatoes); creamed-spinach hush puppies; and cacio e pepe orzo.
The drinks: Head Barman Bryan Schneider (Clover Club, Monkey Bar) mixes up libations including a rotating drink on tap and a Quality Mule (vodka + ginger beer). Signatures include the Smokin’ Grass (scotch, lemongrass, ginger and honey: and the Adios: 110 Proof Tequila, tarragon, lime, and habanero ice cubes. In the wine department, a creative new invention called a "wine stack" allows guests to sample wines from different bottles to create their own custom "bottle" using 12 house-curated options (see photo in slide two below).
The space: Designed by Reunion Goods and Services, white-washed exposed brick walls in the back room contrast with brown wood Vintage Dutch school chairs and graphic art throughout. Fabric-lined electrical cords lines the ceilings and walls connecting the opal light pendants.
The details: 19 Greenwich Avenue; 212-337-9988
Back dining room photo wall
Long-bone short rib steak
Butternut brioche bread pudding