A wall mural pays homage to Laos, “land of a million elephants,” at Khe-Yo in New York City.
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Birth Announcements: October 2013

Juliet Glass - October 2013

In July, chef Marc Forgione partnered with longtime colleague chef Soulayphet “Phet” Schwader to open Khe-Yo at 157 Duane Street, where the focus is the Laotian cuisine of Schwader’s background, reimagined with seasonal market ingredients. Exposed brick walls and tables crafted from reclaimed teak give the 74 seat space a warm, sophisticated feel. Khe-Yo means “green” in Laotian, so expect vegetables to have equal footing with proteins on the menu. Apps ($9 to $15): crunchy coconut rice with spicy kaffir lime sausage and baby iceberg; house-made sesame beef jerky with smoked chile sauce and fresh radishes. Mains ($21 to $25): pork jowl red curry with fairytale eggplant and baby shiitake mushrooms; lemongrass Berkshire spare ribs with smashed long beans and heirloom tomatoes.

In August, chef Matthew Kenney opened The Gothic at 108 Main Street. Although best known for his raw, plant-based cuisine, at this intimate 41 seater Kenney integrates local meat and seafood into the modern seasonal menu. The building, constructed in 1878 as a bank, has great bones, with soaring 16-foot tin ceilings and the original moldings, which give the restaurant a quiet sophistication. Executive chef Jason Paul is a graduate of the Matthew Kenney Academy and was recently chef de cuisine at M.A.K.E. (Santa Monica). Apps ($9 to $11): chilled broccoli soup with almonds, radishes, and cashew yogurt; lobster seviche with tomato jam, citrus, and chile. Mains ($16 to $25): line-caught halibut with fingerling potatoes, green beans, and herb puree; cauliflower with polenta, kale, smoked tomatoes, and walnuts. Desserts ($8 to $10): smoked chocolate pudding with walnuts and maple; olive oil cake with citrus marmalade and lavender cream.

The former Overlook Grill in Falls Park, at the base of Liberty Bridge, got a European makeover and was reborn this summer as Passerelle Bistro (601 South Main Street). The locally based Table 301 operates this venue, having recruited Teryi Youngblood, who has been with the company for 13 years, as chef de cuisine. Tiled flooring, yellow walls, and simple wood tables and chairs create a casual continental mood for the 102-seater. Apps ($4 to $12): garlic shrimp with piment d’Espelette, fleur de sel, and crusty bread; salad of baby lettuce, yellow wax beans, hard-cooked eggs, olives, and Sherry vinaigrette. Mains ($15 to $23): summer cassoulet of duck confit, sausage, field peas, pepper coulis, parsley, and wilted Swiss chard; parsley/garlic–crusted mountain trout with carrots, sweet peas, and château potatoes. Desserts ($7): almond galette with brandy cream and raspberries; profiteroles with black raspberry ice cream and chocolate sauce.

In July, chef Rick Moonen of RM Seafood transformed RM Upstairs (at Mandalay Place at Mandalay Bay) into RX Boiler Room, where you will find updated American eats, happily coupled with refashioned classic cocktails by Nathan Greene. The interior seats 180 and evokes the 19th century industrialism of the Victorian era (known in design circles as “steampunk style”), combining reclaimed woods and velvet drapes. The apothecary-inspired bar is filled with gears, cogs, and glass cabinets filled with antique jars and herbs. Executive chef is Johnny Church, recently of View Wine Bar & Kitchen. Apps ($8 to $16): braised oxtail croquettes with lemon aïoli; chicken liver pâté in a jar with Port jelly and toast points. Mains ($14 to $30): charred octopus kebabs with white bean puree, spicy lemon butter, and red pepper coulis; tacos of pork steamed in banana leaves with tomatillo/habañero salsa and citrus-marinated onions. Desserts ($9 to $12): “Rocky Road” dark chocolate pudding with toasted marshmallows and Valrhona brownie bites; trio of granitas (watermelon, almond, and espresso).