Since Sofrito opened on the East Side a couple of years ago, hound reports have been mixed.

But Corsica, a recent visitor, says this kitchen hits the mark with several dishes, most notably carne frita, or crisp-fried marinated pork. The generous portion of meat is juicy and salty, served with lime wedges and a dipping sauce. It’s an $8 appetizer, but Corsica warns: “There was so much meat in this dish that we couldn’t finish it without ruining our appetites for the main course.” Another starter, chicken empanadas, comes out light, flaky, and greaseless, with a Creole-style sauce on the side. Among the entrées, Sofrito’s bistec encebollado is a winner, Corsica says: a tender, flavorful slab of sirloin with onions, served with sweet plantains.

The vibe is festive. During one weeknight dinner, Corsica counted around nine birthday parties, all serenaded by the waiters; “be prepared for an outburst of singing and clapping every few minutes. … However, it didn’t bother me at all -- in fact, I felt it added to the overall experience.”

Sofrito [Midtown East]
400 E. 57th Street (between First Avenue and Sutton Place), Manhattan

Board Link: Sofrito: a review

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