Telepan Local is Chef Bill Telepan’s new more casual Tribeca version of his famous Michelin-starred namesake restaurant Uptown. He is known for using farm fresh ingredients, somewhat before the fad. And, coincidentally, Telepan Local is a tapas style American establishment featuring local ingredients not unlike our last dinner out at Toro NYC. This is more unfortunate news for Toro. Had we eaten this meal on New Year’s Eve, we’d have been quite satisfied. We managed to get to Telepan Local in their first week open. On Monday, January 6, the day it was 3 degrees.
The decor features wavy subway tiles and light wood. There are mirrors at eye level reflecting to infinity. Lighting is quite dim and warm. Chairs are rustic reclaimed wood. Parts make me want to throw some deer heads on the wall, others are modern and clean. Tables are quite tiny with a small mirror in the center topped with a votive. Overall the vibe is cozy. I believe I read somewhere that Bill Telepan calls it ‘Farmer Chic’ and I’d say that’s an appropriate description. The lighting was low so iPhone pictures were not great here and their website isn’t fully built yet. The image below is from the Eater Telepan write up, which highlights the full interior. Click through the link to check it out.
The entire menu is small plates organized from bites to larger share plates. The menu at first glance is not so different from most local ingredient seasonal menus…grilled octopus, fluke crudo, Brussels sprouts, beets, sunchokes, short ribs. But the preparations have a nice twist and it feels fresh. Plus the bonus of seasonal menus is they change regularly. We chose the special of the day, pork belly, which of course is also on every locavore’s menu! But every course was in some way unique and not one passed us by without a wow. Not something that happens often enough anymore.
Shrimp Poppers green chili aioli 9
2 shrimp, breaded and fried on a bed of green chili aioli. It would have been nice if there were 4. It left us wanting more.
Roasted Beets house ricotta & honey 8
Roasted beets, with tiny dollops of fresh homemade whipped ricotta and a drizzle of honey. Simple, perfectly roasted and touched with a kiss of sweetness. Nice.
Fluke Crudo fermented radishes & celery 14
This was a favorite. Raw fluke, topped with these amazing thinly sliced marinated radishes and touches of celery leaves. The ‘fermented’ radishes were the acid flavor without too heavy of a marinade on the fish.
Escargot black pepper chickpeas and mint 14
This was such a welcome and light twist. 6 snails presented in a bowl filled with chickpeas and lightly minted. It was served with a slice of toasted French bread to dip in the sauce. This preparation really highlighted the snails rather than cover them with massive amounts of heavy butter and garlic.
Grilled Octopus red wine & almonds 15
We see grilled octopus on every single menu. Boring! But this was nicely charred and served next to a parsley salad with pickled onions and almonds. That’s what sold us on this one. The fresh herb was the perfect compliment. This is going to be on the repeat list for next time.
Pork Belly 16
We hadn’t ordered quite enough so we added this on at the end. It was served with apple cider fermented cabbage and was on a bed of root veggies. We thought they were turnips or parsnips although it was hard to tell with the amazing flavors of the sweet cabbage. It had been baked to a golden brown and reduced. This rustic presentation was different from most and was the perfect end for our meal on a cold night.
Pecan Cake 10
A dense layered cake from pastry chef Larissa Raphael
We decided this will be a regular local spot for us. The prices are reasonable and it is possible not to over eat. The bar was packed when we left although in light of the weather not too many people were out that night and the dining room was not full. We look forward to lunch opening so we can get some pictures of this fabulous and beautiful food. We saw Bill Telepan himself manning the kitchen. Its nice to see a top chef making sure everything is perfect.
329 Greenwich Street (bet Jay & Duane)