Nearby Subway Stops
A, B, C, D, E, F, M at W. 4th St.-Washington Sq.
- Beer and Wine Only
This venue is closed.
If Potatopia seems like the kind of slickly branded grab-and-go venture you’d expect to find in a shopping center, that’s because it is: The first location opened two years ago at the Menlo Park Mall in Edison, New Jersey. The new Greenwich Village outpost offers a spud-based alternative to neighbors like 99-Cent Fresh Pizza, with a menu, that overwhelms in its abundance of customizable options: eleven potato preparations (seven of them fried); thirteen vegetables (if raw garlic and sprigs of cilantro count); six cheeses (from chunks of blue to a dusting of Parmesan); six proteins (including Italian sweet sausage and shrimp); and sixteen sauces, twelve mayo-based. The easy way out is to do as the menu suggests and “leave it to the potato experts” by ordering a “signature meal.” Of course, by the time they’re fully accessorized, these high-carb “meals” end up tasting oddly similar: The Comatoser, with its base of deep-fried “skin chips” wears the same biting mantle of raw garlic, onion, and scallions as the baked-and-stuffed Veggie Heavy and the deep-fried nuggets in the Smashed Hit. Many of the cheeses overlap as well, and after a while, the aïolis (be they roasted-pepper, chipotle, or chile-pepper) start to blend together too. The deepest flaw, though, is not one of flavor but of execution. In several instances, the star of the show was undercooked (in a crunchy Au Gratin), simultaneously mushy and stiff (the sweet potato “crinkles”), or just plain lukewarm—the bane of this food category, as any French-fry fanatic well knows. Broccoli and corn toppings notwithstanding, Potatopia, like the rest of the new novelty-food start-ups, deals in junk food, and for junk food to succeed, it needs those essential contrasts of hot and cold, gooey and crisp, and salt and spice. It needs to cohere.Recommended Dishes
Smashed Hit with chicken, Mashed Pie with steak, sausage, and curry aïoli.
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