Had a tremendous dinner at Salt in SoHo last night, a space formerly known as Stella for about six months and Sans Souci before that. (58 MacDougal, just south of Houston). The chef is the same as Stella and now is the sole owner, but the space has been remade.
The menu was great. I had a pan-roasted bluefish that was so good and flavorful I begged the recipe out of the owner. It's got a Craft-like menu (order an entree, mix and match 2 sides. Nowhere near Craft's outrageous prices, however). I ordered a tomato salad and roasted corn that were tasty (the cherry tomatos were spectacular, actually.) My wife had snapper served in a broth. The only argument we had all night was whose entree was tastier. Entrees are in the $18-22 range and worth it. Service was great. They're using communal table in part of the restaurant, which I actually enjoy when it works.
My frequent whine about the really expensive icon restaurants in New York is that I've had drmatically better, blow-away meals at half the price or less. Well, when I whine the next time, Salt is one of those places I can cite as an example having far more preferable food than, say, the Four Seasons.
BTW, I saw that Le Deux Gamin on MacDougal is closed. Did they simply overexpand the chain?????