Friday, June 12, 2009


59. Cabrito
50 Carmine between Bleecker & Bedford

Marked by its pink goat that hangs above the doorway, Cabrito has become a popular West Village destination for those seeking out traditional Mexican fare since it opened in 2008. Sneaking in at 6:58, I noticed that happy hour ended at 7:00pm, and the bartender was nice enough to let me sneak in a round of Dos Equis on tap ($3/each) and a chorizo taco ($3 - normally $5) before time expired.

As I waited for my taco to arrive, our party of 3 was seated at an awkwardly positioned table facing the wall. It's a small space and I understand the need to maximize seating, but this table is kind of ridiculous. Alas, we were only there to sample a few things and move on, so we weren't about to cause a scene...

The taco arrived, and sure, it was good, but it was great, and for $3 there are so many other taco places in the city that offer higher quality at a lower price. Even during happy hour, I think I'll pass next time. Scanning through the menu, we opted for the TONY recommended Cabrito dish ($26), made with sour orange, garlic, and slow-roasted chili rubbed goat, served with flour tortillas, and the pork and purslane stew ($19), made with pork and purslane flower in a spicy tomato broth.


Maybe it's because I'm price sensitive that I had a hard time not comparing the two dishes on taste alone, but the discrepancy in value was so distinct that I couldn't help but let that discrepancy spill over into my overall feeling about the two dishes. The cabrito was moist, spicy, fatty, and whether eaten alone or as part of a taco with chopped onions and cilantro was something that I could see myself eating regularly. That is, if it were half the price. It's the same amount of food as 3 or 4 of their regular tacos, so why is it priced like its 5 or 6?


The pork stew offered the better value play, though at the same price, I'd go with the Cabrito. Sizeable portion, spicy broth and tender meat. On a pure happiness per dollar valuation, I'd have to go with the pork stew, though it's still no bargain.

Pork Stew:

Yeah, it's good. But certainly not worth the price or the cramped atmosphere.

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