Posts Tagged With: Khe-Yo NYC

Khe-Yo – For the Bloggers Who Lunch

Dinner menu envy – Its a real thing.  A first world problem.  So often we salivate over the dinner menu when all we can do is lunch sometimes.  Unlike in other countries (like Italy), lunch plays second fiddle here.  While there are many ethnic plays that offer the same menu all day long, most of the places out there offer lunch menus that aren’t nearly as interesting as dinner.  It all boils down to our busy lifestyle.  Our daily routine means we need something good and quick during the week.  And when finally the weekend comes and we have more time, these guys transform into French Toast factories.

Khe-Yo isn’t really an exception to the rule.  Its an elevated Laotian (the only one in NYC as far as I know), and I wouldnt expect them to offer an all day menu.  But what they do is offer exactly the type of menu you would want from a place like this.  This gang puts a lot of thought into what goes on each dish and just pulls it off.  When they first started offering lunch, your options were Banh-Mi A or Banh-Mi B, to go. Nothing wrong with it, but 4 years later this is a different Khe-Yo.

Its the same kind of small concentrated menu they offer for dinner.  The lone appetizer, excellent chicken wings got that perfect messy balance of sweet, sour and spicy notes.  Its been a while since I had Bahn Mi here but I have full confidence in any of the three options.  The Coconut crusted shrimp sounds appealing even though I’m not the biggest fan of coconut shrimp.  The Pho here, Nong-Khai Style (city in Thailand on the border with Laos) is as top notch as any Pho I’ve had in a NYC.  And last but not least, the Creekstone Farms Skirt Steak is a lesson in skirt perfection.  Marinated with sugar and Hoisin, top quality tender awesomeness that just melts in your fork.  Possibly my favorite overall restaurant in Tribecca, and a solid Z-Lister

Previously on Khe-Yo

Khe-Yo
157 Duane St (Hudson/W Broadway), Tribeca
Rating: Two Z’s (out of 4)
Stars range from Good to Exceptional. Simple as that
Recommended Dishes (lunch): Skirt Steak, Wings, Pho

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Khe-Yo – Steak of the Year and More

Courtesy of Zagat

Courtesy of Zagat

Feels weird writing about steak after the horrific events in Paris.  But life goes on.

Steak to me is like Family Guy.  I enjoy it tremendously, but rarely seek it.  I grill it at home, I order it when I feel like it, but rarely crave and go out of my way for it.  Steakhouses in general are not part of my regular diet, and the vast majority of my steak intakes come from non-traditional steakhouses and elsewhere (Italian, French, American).  But then, about once a year, I get to taste something like this, which makes me question my diet and our overall existence.  I’m well overdue with this post since this particular piece of meat has been on my radar for a few years now.  And for the same reason I dont record new Family Guy episodes, I’ve never actually made it to American Cut to have it.  But I thought this was a post about Khe-Yo Ziggy.  Liar!

American Cut is Marc Forgione’s steakhouse in Tribeca.  Khe-Yo is its exotic, wild half sister.  She sleeps naked, whistles at construction workers, and doesn’t come to company meetings on time.  Khe-Yo is a collaboration of Forgione, another dude, and Laos born Soulayphet Schwader offering Laos inspired dishes (Essentially Thai on Crack).  I’ve been to Khe-Yo before including four days after it opened in 2013, but this time I figured I’ll bring Mrs Ziggy for her first Khe-Yo experiences.  However, things didn’t quite go as planned.  They were better.Khe-Yo Sticky Rice

Before the waitress had a chance to tell us about today’s specials, I already knew that we were having the steak special.  That’s because my sharp steak radar was able to pick up these words from the table nearby “Pastrami, rubbed, rib eye, hmmmm, yes, so good”.  It sounded like what you normally hear at the other end of a sex line (I was told).  The Ribe eye, rubbed with pastrami seasoning is after all, the Amarican Cut classic I keep hearing about.  And it was as magnificent as I imagined.  Expertly cooked, good size steak, that’s easily shareable between two ($56).  The meat cant get much more tender for a rib eye, with perfectly rendered fat.  The peppery pastrami crust is nicely charred and buttery.  Its the perfect steak!

If you want a great steak you should probably go to American Cut.  If you wan to experience the bold flavors of Laos, dont mind to get your hands dirty (or dont mind having your spouse feed you in public), and can handle some heat, than I highly recommend Khe-Yo.  They start you off with a bang, the complimentary sticky rice with fiery “Bang Bang” sauce (lime, chili, fish sauce) that sets the tone for things to come.  You eat that and much of the rest with your fingers.  The smell for the next 10 hours is complimentary as well.  Try the complex Jurgielewicz Duck Salad, the quail, and the crunchy coconut rice balls with sausages.  I wish they would provide more sausages with that rice.  And finish off with the apple crumb with pineapple and rum raisin ice cream.  The whole meal is like Havah Nagila in your mouth!

Khe-Yo
157 Duane St
$$$
Recommended Dishes: Jurgielewicz Duck Salad, quail, coconut rice, Rib Eye (if you lucky)Khe-Yo

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Back to Khe-Yo for the Khe-Yosk

Get it?  Khe.. Yosk.  Its a play on… oh never mind.  Its Khe-Yo week on Eating With Ziggy.  Sort of like fashion Week but with less fashion and more eating.  By the way last week I came out of my office and noticed an unusual looking crowd walking on 54th, most likely coming out of pier 94.  And I realized right away that its Fashion Week.  Thank god I was wearing my fashionable 10 year old red Calvin Klein shirt that day.  It has a few small holes here and there but they are not that evident.

photo (48)Anyway, a few days ago I told you about Khe-Yo and today I met Hummus Whisperer for lunch in the brand new Khe-Yosk offering delicious Banh Mi sandwiches for lunch only.  Banh Mi is the Vietnamese version of the Po’boy.  Essentially an airy baguette with some sort of meat and veggies.  Here you got 2 kinds.  Beer Lao Braised Berkshire Pork Belly with pickled carrots and other veggies was a delicious combination.  Although I was wishing for a bit more pork belly (duh!) this one had plenty of flavor.  The Jurgielewicz Duck salad in Khe-Yo is quickly becoming their best dish for dinner.  For lunch same duck is featured as a Confit with baby arugula, red and yellow peppers and something called bang bang sauce.  I didnt know the Vietnamese were big Tarantino fans.  The meat was more evident here and all the ingredients worked beautifully together.  The baguettes here are top notch and the counter guy didnt want to disclose the source.  He probably didnt know.  Both sandwiches had pleasant, mild lingering, heat.

photo (50) photo (49)

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Khe-Yo – Your Laotian Fix

Khe-YoDear Readers, it is official.  Tribeca is now a culinary hotspot.  A few Years ago I wouldnt touch the area with a 10 foot pole (mainly because of the difficulties involved) but now I found the area refreshing.  I can now have a great Falafel in Nish Nush, amazing Korean in Jungsik, and now Khe-Yo.  Just like Jungsik, the first modern Korean to hit NYC, Khe-Yo is the first place purely devoted to Lao cuisine.  But Lao cooking has been around here for a while now.  In my best Troy McClure voice…

“Hi, I’m Troy McClure!  You may remember this Laos dish from movies such as Yum Yum, An Officer and a Thai Dish, Yum Yum 3, Eat Drink Man Woman Tranny”

What I’m trying to say is Lao dishes like Larb and the spicy papaya salad can be found in many Thai restaurants all over town.  But in Marc Forgione’s Khe-Yo things get a bit more inventive. I visited Khe-Yo about a month a ago, 2 days after it opened and since then Khe-Yo has gained a lot of media attention.  Marc now has places in both Duane and Reade streets! Ok, it sounded much more meaningful in my head.  Executive chef is Laos born Soulayphet Schwader (AKA better call Saul!)who will occasionally come out to serve the main course himself

They start you off with a bang here. Sticky rice comes with 2 fantastic condiments and a prolonged explanation on how to best enjoy the sticky rice.  Eating with your fingers.  Dip it in the Heirloom puree or the addictively sick spicy Jeow made with 4 different Thai chili, cilantro, fish sauce and garlic.  I was dipping everything in that thing including car keys

I love small menus.  This one only has 5 apps, 5 entrees, and a few salads.  Crunchy coconut rice with spicy kaffir lime Sausage was good and original.  I just wished there was a bit more sausage.  Jurgielewicz Duck salad was even better.  Nicely done, freshly butchered (24 hour) duck along with lightly fried crunchy duck tongue, lemongrass, nice palm sugar vinegar, and jalapeno skins to balance things out.  Nice start

Berkshire Spare Ribs were just ok.  A bit fatty for my taste and on the salty side.  But I liked the accompanied cold long beans salad.  Pork Jowl Red Curry was more like it.  Like a super delicious mild pork stew with tasty grilled shiitake mushrooms and baby eggplant on the side.

Dessert menu consists of coconut rice pudding with sliced peach and cashew bits which was fine, and a pricey but promising native cocktail ($13).  A fine meal overall.  I would love to come back and explore the rest of the menu, like the whole black bass and the chicken.  Marc Forgione told me since they opened 2 days ago 15 Lao natives told him how thrilled they were with this place.  They also recently opened “Khe-Yosk” for lunch.  Get it?  Khe..yosk.  Its a Banh Mi Sandwich takeout place, and I hope to to try it next week

Khe-Yo Sticky Rice Khe-Yo Coconut Rice Khe-Yo Duck Salad Khe-Yo ribs Khe-Yo Pork Jowl Khe-Yo shiitake Khe-Yo Pudding

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