Tag: Stone Creek

I’ll have what she’s having

Friday, April 4th, 2008 | All Things, Eats

After wiling away happy hour (and then some) at Stone Creek‘s anniversary party — thanks to owner and Cowboys sympathizer Jon Pirozzi for the invitation — we’d had our fill of bar food and semi-stilted small talk with suited strangers.

The area around 28th and Lex is known for ethnic eats: Indian and Pakistani mostly, plus the occasional Afghani restaurant. I was in the mood for something different, though… or rather: something not so different. And for straightforward comfort food, one of my favorite spots in this neighborhood is the eminently homey Penelope on the corner of 30th Street and Lexington Avenue.

The low-key restaurant, with its shabby country-chic decor (striped awning, mismatched tables, wooden plank flooring, turquoise wainscoting), first opened in 2003. The menu features homespun favorites, freshly prepared — exactly what one would expect from a place named for owner Jennifer Potenza’s turtle. Popular for brunch and home-baked goods, which are displayed on pedestals under glass. As noted by one recent Yelp reviewer, Penelope seems to draw an overwhelmingly female crowd (“Guys… THE ENTIRE CLIENTELE WAS FEMALE. I’m not joking. Really not joking“) … a fact my two male dining companions this evening can happily confirm.

I’m often drawn to Penelope’s warm artichoke and spinach dip, but in slight acknowledgment of our surroundings, l ordered the “Curried Chicken Salad”: grilled chicken, golden raisins, green apple, and peppers in a sweet and spicy curry dressing, garnished with toasted coconut. (I make a similar version at home, using Fairway’s roasted chicken and chopped mangoes.)

I’ve enjoyed just about all the salads here, actually… particularly the “When Veggie Met Sally” (chopped greens with red onion, grilled veggie burger, and green apple tossed with goat cheese in a roasted garlic balsamic vinaigrette) — a tribute to that quintessential New York film, which MC would refer to consistently and mistakenly as “When Harry Met Salad.” Which actually would have made for a better play on the movie title, don’t you think?

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