You may have noticed that the temperature in New York is starting to drop, and when that happens, restaurants around town tend to slightly alter their menus to satiate their customers’ need for warmth. This season, there might not be a better (and more delicious) option than the new Thai hot pot at Kittichai.
What: A scalding, spicy tom yum broth, perfect for cooking everything that comes with it: thinly-sliced slabs of marinated pork and hanger steak, salmon, mussels, squid, shrimp, and a variety of Asian veggies. After you’re done cooking, the waiters will bring you a bowl of noodles and douse them in the tom yum broth, which has now been seasoned with all the meat. Where: Kittichai, that sleek, modern Thai resto at Soho’s 60 Thompson, featuring star chef Ty Bellingham. Ideal meal: They start you off with a sweet papaya salad as a kind of calm before the storm. Get the $45 unlimited offering, which is exactly what it sounds like. When you run out of offerings, they will bring you more of whatever you want. End your meal with the aromatic Thai hot chocolate with Mekong whiskey, perfect before confronting the frigid night air. Because: While $45 might seem like a lot, the unlimited option truly ends up being one of the best dining deals in New York. Otherwise, you’ll have to order each item individually and it quickly adds up. The ingredients here are quality. The shrimp is plump, the salmon fresh, and the red meat comes rapped around asparagus spears and broccoli stems. The variety of it all can’t be matched. Tastes like: Whatever you want it to taste like. That’s because they provide you three different dipping sauces, and if you’re the heat-seeking type, they’ll bring you three chili-infused hot sauces for maximum burn. Bottom line: You’ll not only leave feeling gastronomically satisfied, but there’s also a satisfaction with the level of control afforded to you throughout the experience. You cook what you want, when you want, for as long as you want. Few experiences in New York’s culinary world are as satisfying.