You Silly Goose
We saw our friends and former CSA provider the other day. I trust them when it comes to food. They grow heirloom organic food, and one of them grew up on a family farm. They know a lot about food, goats and farm dogs. They walk outside and cut the vegetables they will eat for dinner. They go to their chicken house and pick eggs to eat for breakfast. They really like farm fresh food. They mentioned they went to Silly Goose the other day, and really liked it, and thought that we would like it too. I did not want to try the Silly Goose too soon because there was such a buzz about it at all the newspapers and bloggers that I thought it would be a crazy place to eat. So, I waited 6 months after the opening, and was very happy with our meal.
To my surprise Roderick, the chef and owner of Silly Goose, came over to talk to us and welcome us to his restaurant. He is a CIA grad, had worked in some small restaurants in NYC, and he fashioned the Silly Goose after some of the NYC hole in the walls, except his kitchen is a whole lot bigger than NYC. Roderick got a couple G.F. table top grills, a panini press, a home sized ice cream maker, and the industrial juicer that the juice bar left behind, and he called his kitchen complete. It is not uncommon for a small NYC food joint to have a G.F. grill, a portable burner, and toaster oven and provide satisfying food to their customers. Silly Goose really does translate well in that tradition.
Roderick really thought about his menu to include as much local organic foods as he could get. Delvin Farm delivers garden food every week, and Kenny's Cheese and Noble Cheese are fantastic local cheese suppliers and are featured in many dishes. The dishes are plenty of food for dinner. There are couscous dishes, salads, paninis, and wraps. The couscous dish I got is the King Kong, a shrimp, avocado and shrimp based dish with the rooster hot sauce and a coconut cream based curry sauce. It is so good! I love shrimp, I love avocado, I love coconut based curry flavor and I love cashews, which this dish has. It is nutty, but I wanted all those components in a dish, and there it was on the menu, as if it were made just for me. This dish is simply, deceptively simple. M has had various paninis, and just really likes it too. I like that the food is fresh, and there is nothing deep fried. The price point is just great on every dish, everything is less than $10.
Roderick was so engaging, and nice to us. We were having a conversation that even if a restaurant menu isn't that great, it helps to have really nice staff, chef and owner. Nice really takes a restaurant a long way for loyal restaurant followers. Roderick said he lives near a little Asian food restaurant that has had some consistency and deliciousness problems, but he gets takeout from there about once per week. He said that he does it because that food is passable to good, but the owners are super nice people who really made him feel so welcome in their restaurant. I feel that Roderick is really nice, and his food is delicious! As an added bonus to me, all his food has a local organic component to it, and that is my goal is to eat food with at least one local organic component to it.
So, for the our 1st of multiple visits, Roderick was nice to tell us about his restaurant, and as a bonus, he gave up a 3 dish ice cream tasting plate before we left. These ice creams were made in a home counter top ice cream maker. We had vegan coconut lime, beet and cinnamon ice creams. They were all really really good. I am inspired to make ice cream again after this. I may want to get or borrow a larger ice cream maker than the one I have, and make some ice cream.
Roderick, you are right, a nice staff, nice owner and nice chef goes a long way, and you have that part of restaurant owning down to a tee. The bonus is, the food is really good too, and I would forgive the staff greatly if they were not nice to get more of the Silly Goose.