Steampunk Meets Cuisine at Chef David Rotter’s Boulton & Watt

A(n industrial) revolution has hit Alphabet City: the team behind Ella and the Blind Barber bring revolutionary dishes to the table at Boulton & Watt. “Like our namesake, we’re refining and re-creating an already much loved product,” said former 983 and Norwood chef David Rotter. “It’s a revised take on rustic American comfort food, rich and hearty and satisfying during the cold months.”

This means you can find dishes like gouda and white cheddar macaroni and cheese, a chicken pot pie topped with light puff pastry, and a bunch of indulgent small snacks including wild mushroom duxelles and his rich short rib with bone marrow toast.

Boulton & Watt have opened in the former Nice Guy Eddie’s, and now, the prime spot has a steampunk twist with salvaged windows, an antique steam engine used to power the restaurants fan system, and a spattering of repurposed furniture.

“We knew that by taking away Nice Guy Eddie’s we had to create something worthwhile, especially on such a prominent corner,” said Rotter. “Our ethos is simple; we want to bring people together over great food, great drinks, in a welcoming, inviting atmosphere.”

The name comes from Boulton & Watt, who made stationary steam engines in England. While the original company revolutionized machinery, the restaurant in Alphabet City comes at a time when many things have been changing around the area, including numerous green spaces popping up along Houston, and the opening of Union Market.

“The corner of Houston and Avenue A has always been a gateway to something special,” said Rotter. “With the changes this neighborhood has gone through over the last few years, we felt the time was right to give something back to a neighborhood that has given us so much love and joy over the years.”

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