---------- FashionFirstLunchLater: Haute Restaurant of the Week: Double Crown

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Haute Restaurant of the Week: Double Crown

The newest addition to the Bowery quarter is a fine fare escapade, celebrating the nineteenth century British presence in countries of the Far East region. Double Crown is another brilliant creation from the AvroKo team who has gained their status designing restaurants such as Quality Meats, Sapa and Stanton Social. The décor and cuisine are inspired by the collision of cultures during Britain's colonization, inferred with a contemporary twist.

Guests are greeted to a visual feast as the Parisian brasserie atmosphere is intertwined with exposed brick walls, scavenger finds from Chelsea flea markets, such as vintage light fixtures and Singapore ceiling fans powered by a single belt. A divine and regal nook within Double Crown is the connecting bar, Madame Geneva, which allows for a libertine approach to eating and drinking, complete with laced panel walls and feminine touches.

Double Crown's impressive cocktail list does not disappoint, one could dabble all evening with Mango and Cardamom sour cocktails, Pimm's cup with gin or vodka and Asian melon rose Martinis all cultivated by Brian McGrory. However, you will sorely miss out if you do not taste the Streaky Ham. This delicacy takes ten days to cure with Lavender and honey before its cold smoked for an hour, roasted and left to marinate for an additional day. Another crown jewel is the Singapore Laska with green tea noodles, crab and bean sprouts served in a decorative china tea cup and saucer.

The executive chef behind the British-Indo-Asian conceptions is Brad Farmerie, who wanted to take a more casual yet imaginative approach to the menus he had created in the past. Among Farmerie's favorites is the braised Short Rib with a Guinness- five spice sauce and roasted parsnips. Finishing off the evening wouldn't be complete without giving into the enticing and luscious passion fruit Marshmallows. The boisterous and bustling scene is the place to people watch as a diverse downtown crowd gathers for a global infusion evening. Who ever thought that colonialism's stigma could be so appetizing?

DOUBLE CROWN, 316 Bowery at Bleecker Street, Hours: Mon-Fri, 6pm-11:45pm; Sat-Sun, 10am-3pm and 6pm-11:45pm. Reservations recommended.