Thursday, February 27, 2014


Mata cuatro, Cascalote

"Family-run" like "locavore" is one of those designations that tend to get slapped onto a place with very little thought or even evidence. But Cascalote, a Latin bistro in East Harlem, really merits the first. On a recent frigid Saturday, we were served lunch by daughter #1 while dad manned the grill in the kitchen, coming into the dining area periodically to check on our progress through a monster plate of incredibly moist, Peruvian-style roasted chicken. Given the size of the thing, he made an awful lot of trips.

Mind you, this was after our server had brought us complimentary bowls of yogurt and granola. "My dad wants you to have this," she said as she put the plates down. Fine by us!

About halfway into our lunch, a construction crew wandered in. One guy had eaten at Cascalote the day before, served by daughter #2, and raved about it to his buddies. Like us, they got an overstuffed burrito, ours with shrimp, rice, beans, and tomatoes.

Family has been on our minds recently. And, at the risk of being hyperbolic, this lunch stuffed our bellies as well as our souls.

Shrimp burrito, Cascalote

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