Dirt Candy

On Allen Street in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Amanda Cohen opened Dirt Candy, the award-winning vegetable-only restaurant that took Manhattan’s lower scene by pleasant surprise. As both owner and lead chef, Cohen’s operation was also the first vegetarian restaurant in 17 years to receive two stars from the New York Times. It’s been hailed by Gourmet magazine, the Village Voice, and has been recognized in the Michelin Guide five years in a row. As if those accolades weren’t enough, Cohen was also the first vegetarian chef to compete on Iron Chef America, as well as the first North-American author to publish a graphic-novel cookbook.

White faux leather, impressive bedazzled signage, an outdoor bar, and a red banquette give Dirt Candy a young, vibrant feel. Dishes are served tapas style at Dirt Candy, and offered three ways: Snacks & Sides, Vegetables, and To Share. Menu favorites include the Kale Matzoh Ball Soup with a poached egg and okra; a Tomato Cake made with smoked feta and tomato leather; Jalapeño Hush Puppies, served with maple butter; a Mapo Eggplant served with baby bok choi, baby pea shoots, and eggplant sformata; and the Brussels Sprout Tacos, served on a sizzling stone with lettuce wrappers and accompaniments.

Reservations can be made online and are encouraged. Brunch is served on Saturdays and Sundays from 11:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Dinner is served Tuesday through Satruday from 5:30 until 11 p.m.

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