Just came back from Marc Forgione's new place in Tribeca. He now has places in Both Duane and Reade streets (Ok, it sounded more meaningful in my head). Executive chef is Laos born Soulayphet Schwader showcasing perhaps the city's first Laotian inspired cuisine. You can find Lao inventions like green papaya salads in Thai places all over the city but I'm not aware of a Laotian place quite like Khe-yo. But that's enough of me pretending I know anything about Lao cooking. I just came to Tribeca to have a falafel. A least that was the initial plan.
They start you off with a bang here. Sticky rice comes with 2 fantastic condiments and a prolonged explanation on how to best enjoy the sticky rice. Eating with your fingers. Dip it in the Heirloom puree or the addictively sick spicy sauce made with 4 different Thai chilis, cilantro, fish sauce and garlic.
The menu only has 5 apps, 5 entrees, and a few salads. Crunchy Coconut Rice with with Spicy Kafﬁr Lime Sausage was good and original (to me at least). Like delicious sweet rice balls. I just wished there were a bit more sausages. Jurgielewicz Duck salad was even better. Nicely done freshly butchered (24 hour) duck along with lightly fried crunchy duck tongue, lemongrass, nice palm sugar vinegar, and jalapeno skins to balance things out. Nice start
Berkshire Spare Ribs were just ok. A bit fatty for my taste and on the salty side. But I liked the accompanying cold long beans salad. Pork Jowl Red Curry was more like it. Like a super delicious mild pork stew with tasty grilled shiitake mushrooms and baby eggplant on the side.
Dessert menu consists of a coconut rice pudding with sliced peach and cashew bits which was fine, and a pricey native cocktail ($13). A fine meal overall. I would love to come back and explore the rest of the menu, like the whole black bass and the chicken. Marc told me since they opened 2 days ago 15 Lao natives told him how thrilled they were with this place. Check it out