Chris and I recently started having a Date Night every other Friday. Date Night because, when you’ve been together for a while, it can be easy to get stuck in that rut of always staying in and doing the same ol’ thing. And every other Friday because I’m certain that if we shot for every week, things would come up, we’d miss one here and there, and, because we could never really keep up with the schedule anyway, it would fall by the wayside.
So far it’s been great. We’ve met for movies, had a museum date, and, naturally, have gone out to eat. I do fear, however, that we may be getting into a whole different kind of rut. I’m not complaining. It’s an enjoyable rut. It’s just that, since starting Date Night in January, we have now spent three of them at Angelica Kitchen.
Angelica is an earthy, vegan restaurant with a macrobiotic leaning in the East Village. It has a similar vibe to many other macrobiotic restaurants we’ve visited–cozy, with warm, neutral tones and wooden tables. Much of the food is quite basic (beans, grains, greens), which is to be expected, but there are more than enough interesting appetizers and salads to keep you from making any easy decisions. Not to mention, the daily specials menu always has several delicious options with cheeky names. I most recently ordered the “Wouldn’t it be Rice” special–a kabocha squash risotto with frizzled leeks alongside pesto chickpeas, steamed broccoli, and a couple wedges of sweet potato. In addition to tasting great, everything they offer is wholesome and nourishing.
For gluten-free diners, the daily specials that are GF are clearly marked. The regular menu, with its thorough descriptions of all the dishes, is pretty easy to navigate, however the servers are more than happy to help with questions about what’s gluten-y or not. (Tip: seitan is wheat gluten. If you’re sensitive/intolerant/etc, stay away.)
Whenever we’ve gone, there’s been a wait (the later, the longer), so plan accordingly. Also, a heads-up, Angelica is cash-only. Though clearly neither of these things have kept us from going back, and going back again. It’s a low-key experience, reasonably priced, and we always leave feeling well-fed.
One more thing: Do not–and I mean do not–leave without ordering a large bag of the brittle to go. It has just the right amount of sweetness and is packed with toasty nuts and seeds. It’s the kind of thing that can make you quite content to never leave your rut.
300 East 12th Street
New York, NY