Things to Do in NYC: Dinner at Toro
Last night, we were lucky enough to score a table at a new restaurant in Manhattan that practically everyone’s buzzing about — TORO.
Toro is a Barcelona-style tapas restaurant, serving a mix of traditional and modern Spanish food made with the finest and freshest ingredients. The original restaurant is located in Boston’s South End and, apparently, it’s a pretty big deal. So big, in fact, that chefs Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette decided to up the ante and open their second branch right here in NYC.
Thank God they did, because this meal was freakin’ fantastic.
I’m going to be honest with you — I’m not much of a food critic. I refuse to eat anything adventurous, including (but not limited to) duck, rabbit, liver, octopus, snail, tongue… the list goes on. That being said, my naive taste buds loved EVERY SINGLE THING I put into my mouth last night.* (Get your mind out of the gutter.) You definitely don’t have to be a “foodie” to enjoy your meal here.
I’m going to let you in on the three most important things you need to know about dining at Toro.
1. ORDER THE CORN.
I know what you’re thinking… CORN? Who eats corn, let alone orders it at an upscale Spanish restaurant when there are EMPANADAS AND GARLIC SHRIMP on the menu? Quite frankly, I tend to stay away from corn. Not only do I find it flavorless and generally unexciting, I also spent all four years of high school sporting a full set of braces. In terms of food getting stuck in your braces, corn was always the worst offender.
Guys, just trust me on this one. Order the corn.
Oh. My. Cotija cheese. Wouldja look at that? I don’t think any further words need to be said. Let’s just say that I had a religious experience with a cob of corn last night. (There’s a sentence I never thought I’d say.)
2. ORDER A PORRON OF CAVA.
Or a porron of anything, really. The drink menu is your oyster. Or something like that.
Be warned! Porrons don’t come with drinking glasses. Be prepared for a lot of confused onlookers asking you what the Hell you are doing. (And, when they ask if you are drinking straight tequila, always tell them yes.)
Also, it should be noted that Cava makes you do crazy things — like ordering the plate of black truffle Paella (cough FRANK cough) and then having to chase down your waitress in embarrassment to have it cancelled once realizing it is $90.
(Sorry, chefs. I’m sure it’s delicious but I am poor.)
3. EXIT THROUGH THE SECRET DOOR BY THE BATHROOMS.
Okay, so I’m pretty sure that you’re not supposed to do this. Actually, I know you’re not supposed to do this
because we got stopped and yelled at by a cop wearing a CIA t-shirt who told us we were on private government property and had to leave immediately. But, look how cool this hallway was!
I felt like I was a character in Charlie the Chocolate Factory. Only there was no chocolate. Or candy. So actually maybe I was just drunk.
Great food. Great experience. Great friends. Toro gets two thumbs up from me.
85 10th Avenue
Enter on 15th Street at 11th Avenue
New York, NY 10011
*At one point Dino tried to convince me that I had just eaten Bull testicles and I almost threw up on the table.