Butcher Bay in September’s Nylon Guys:
David Kaufman and NYCGo have included Butcher Bay in roundup of NYC seafood joints. Kaufman write:
Set on a quiet East Village side street, Butcher Bay is the latest culinary expedition for young, tattooed chef Eric Simpson, formerly of Perry Street in the West Village and Tailor in SoHo. At its heart, Butcher Bay is a neighborhood kind of joint, luring in East Village hipsters who enjoy the joint’s grown-up dishes. Simpson is wise to keep the restaurant’s menu focused, with mouthwatering mac and cheese, fish tacos with rice and beans, and a warm salad of squid and escarole. Butcher Bay even has a raw bar with fresh oysters. There’s so much seafood here, it’s hard to believe the intimate space once housed a burger joint.
Photo by Ian Ference
As a part of his new bar menu, chef Eric Simpson proves that fried chicken is equally yummy chilled. He takes organic birds and slow poaches them in a brine of salt, sugar and water. Once they’re almost cooked, he cools them, soaks them in buttermilk, dunks them in eggs and rolls them in a flour and cornstarch mix twice. (The double breading that keeps them extra crispy.) The meat is fried for a couple of minutes and then chilled up to 24 hours in advance before it’s topped with onion cole slaw ($7).
The second is a round-up of Chef Eric Simpson’s favorite songs to listen to while on the job, cooking up all the delicious food.
Go East, GrandLife NYC proclaims in their East Village roundup. And we heartily agree. Especially because they included both Butcher Bay and Tonda in the article:
There is a feel for the New England coastline at four-month old Butcher Bay. With its cheery red façade and intimate, honey colored wood dining room, you’ll swear you’re at a high-end clam shack on the Cape. The artfully tattooed Chef Eric Simpson (formerly of Jean George Vongerichten’s Perry St presides over an open kitchen that churns out a limited but well-executed menu that includes lobster rolls, fish and chips and even a barbecued tofu option. The staff is more than eager to help pair your oysters or lobster B.L.T. with one of their artisanal beers on tap. Unfortunately, zoning regulations keeps the large backyard off limits to patrons
One of Butcher Bay’s partners, restaurateur and filmmaker Bob Giraldi, has slung his dough into the pizzeria ring and opened up Tonda a block away in the large space that once held E.U. The restaurant’s outdoor patio makes it the perfect spot to people watch while enjoying the crusty yet chewy Neapolitan-style pizza. Inside, a wood fired oven has a rotating stone so that each side of the pie gets equal exposure to the fire emanating from the center of the 900-degree plus oven.
Photos by Alia Mansoori
Go pick up the latest issue of Nylon Guys Magazine , the August edition, for a great biographical interview with our chef, Eric Simpson. He answers questions about his time at Tailor and Butcher Bay, and even posed for a picture with photog Erin Barry. The article, “Two If By Sea”, gives a little background on Eric’s new ceviche, too: “raw fish with a white soy marinade, sake-cured trout roe, pineapple, and basil,” he says, “I didn’t think it was going to sell, but it’s been selling out every day.”
Serious Eats is one of our favorite food blogs on the net, so we were quite pleased when foodie Kathy YL Chan singled out our french toast for inclusion on the blog:
The French toast dessert at Butcher Bay in the East Village is one fine example. Four single-bite triangles of French toast (buttery crisp, the sort of texture that only brioche could dream to achieve) is paired with a smooth quenelle of housemade maple ice cream—bold, with an in-your-face maple punch. To finish, there’s roasted peanut caramel and bacon crumble. You just can’t argue with that.
Photo courtesy of Kathy YL Chan and Serious Eats.
BlackBook Magazine and writer Ethan Wolff get some words of advice from Chef Eric Simpson from Butcher Bay on how to make the best clambake. And no, it’s not as hard as it looks. “This is a New York City kitchen-friendly dish because it’s one pot and that’s the whole idea,” Eric says, “That’s how I cook at home. If I need more than one pan to cook my meal, that’s too much work. I don’t want to do dishes on my day off.
“Working at Tailor, it was this amazing million-dollar kitchen with guys covered in tattoos and blasting metal,” Simpson says. “It had a huge effect on the way I like to run this place, just that whole idea of a comfortable vibe, it’s an approachable East Village restaurant, but then trying to capitalize on surprising people. Because it’s fun when you realize you’re getting more than you expected.”
Photos courtesy of BlackBook Magazine and Ethan Wolff.