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Week of December 30, 2002
Having made a Pan-Asian success of his cramped Café Asean with a weathered-barnwood aesthetic and gentle prices, chef-co-owner Simpson Wong desperately needed room to grow (not to mention build a bar). He found it two doors down, where he’s converted the old Homer’s coffee shop into Jefferson (named for Jefferson Market, the courthouse-turned-library across the street). The poured-concrete floor, pleated acoustical-tile ceiling, and recessed light boxes are sleek and modern, as much a departure from Asean’s hominess as the upscale New American menu is from satay and spring rolls. But the random Asian accent is still detectable among dishes like rouget with caramelized persimmon, oxtail raviolo with seared monkfish, and Mission-fig-stuffed quail with clementine-plum wine sauce ($12 to $25).
121 West 10th Street

· Cuisine: New American, Asian

This shiny new Thai canteen has landed in Soho like a long, narrow spaceship, outfitted with a reflective metal ceiling and pink-rubber-webbed barstools. The open kitchen puts an inventive spin on a familiar roster of curries and stir-fries with dishes like shrimp-semolina fritters, pappardelle with lemongrass-beef ragu, and something called “deconstructed hung-lea blackened strip loin.
177 Prince Street

· Cuisine: Thai

Openings Archive

Week of December 16
Gobo, Perbacco
Week of December 9
Sugarcane, Acqua Pazza, Bella Via
Week of December 2
Sen, Mama's Food Shop

and more ...

Photos: Patrik Rytikangas and Bruce Katz

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