Sunday, April 25, 2010

Hech En Dumbo

Marion's restaurant on the Bowery was my friend Jays favorite place. I could never really understand it, but I always liked walking by and seeing people enjoying drinks in the campy 1950's themed room.

It was a bit of a shock when I realized it had closed and some new comer was renovating the space at 354 Bowery. It had been Marion's for my entire life in New York ( 24 years now). Part of me was convinced that it was just the Marion's people doing something new. Indeed it is new people doing something new - well sort of new - as the name may suggest they started to do it first in DUMBO (down under Manhattan overpass in Brooklyn) and have moved their wonderful restaurant to the Bowery.

I've eaten here about 4 times and am amazed every time. Chef Danny Mena has a commitment to quality ingredients and to "homemade" that makes this very authentic Mexican restaurant a thrill to eat in. Even the bar squeezes fresh all their juices and makes such exotic elixirs as hibiscus juice (a sour and bloody red unsweetened bar mix for exotic cocktails) and tamarind juice which they make by boiling tamarind pods in water for 5 hours.

All the food I've had is wonderful and it makes me very happy to see an emphasis put on organic and local. I love mole and the two dishes I loved the most were a quail dish and a duck confit dish which both featured this seductive chocolate based sauce.

Hech en Dumbo was instantly a hit and is so packed in the evening my advice is go for lunch when you can relax, drink one of the four Brooklyn brewed beers (Tiger IPA yum!) and leisurely enjoy a selection of fine food (and an awesome 10 buck prix fix lunch deal) in this rustic, sleek industrial room.

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