TAO Downtown, NYC

It might have been described as "mindblowingly pretentious" by some, but their Glazed Thai BBQ Chicken is heavenly.

For the Sex & the City nut inside me, a visit to a new and cool NYC restaurant is a must. Especially if it's from the new Meatpacking District branch TAO Midtown, the one featured in Sex & the City.
The place is beautiful, big buddha statues everywhere, darkness (btw, sorry for the pictures, it was the best I could do, given the absence of light), loud music, expensive drinks, crowded, suits, models etc... well, I guess it is pretentious, but a little pretentious once in a while doesn't hurt, right?
Anyhow, after having a drink at the bar overlooking the restaurant, we were brought to our table in the middle of the room - I didn't find any bad table in the place - and ordered right away. The service didn't seem as slow as some have described, however, the bar service was terrible, we were having starters when the check for the drinks at the bar came (they couldn't add it to the total?).
But back to the food, as starters we had the Tuna and Yellowtail Tataki and the Chicken gyoza, good but not memorable (in fact, I don't even remember having the gyoza).

We shared 2 main courses, the Shrimp with spicy sauce (I can't seem to find it in the menu anymore), and the heavenly Glazed Thai BBQ Chicken, which I can undoubtedly say it's the best chicken I have ever eaten (I still have to have the $80 chicken from the NoMad): juicy, spicy, flavourful, just perfect. Portions are the right size, not model-sized tiny portions, not hearty homecooked dishes either. We drank some wine in the bar and then I had the Mango Chili Martini, pretty spicy but fresh.
The total was over $120 including drinks, which for a "pretentious" NYC restaurant is not that bad. I would go back just for the chicken!
TAO Downtown
92 Ninth Avenue at 16th Street – New York, NY 10011
Tel. (212) 888.2724
Reservation is compulsory

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