And no, we didn’t say “topless.” From Eater:
A few weeks ago, restaurateur Elena Manich and chef Diego Gonzalez opened El Born, a contemporary Spanish restaurant on Manhattan Avenue in Greenpoint. Gonzalez, formerly of Socaratt Paella Bar, has put together a tapas menu that’s heavy on the vegetable dishes, but you’ll also find lamb chops, foie gras with quince, quail with chocolate, and crispy rabbit. El Born is now open for dinner, and the team hopes to kick off lunch and brunch soon.
Greenpointers paid them a visit too:
Taking its name from a hip area of Barcelona, El Born is run by Barcelonian Elena Manich, and has chef Diego Gonzalez (previously of Socarrat Paella Bar) in the kitchen.
The menu is fresh and original, lending classic Spanish ingredients a bold contemporary edge.
Starters include cod fish collars with squid ink ‘allioli’, goat cheese croquettes, and paper thin filet mignon, artichoke and manchego on bread.
Main dishes get inventive and feature stone grilled octopus, Hudson Valley foie gras, chestnut flour crispy rabbit, and quail in spicy chocolate sauce.
There are also some great vegetable plates, such as a fresh and zesty fennel, anchovy and orange salad (delicious) and a ‘coliflor gratinada’, a warm and comforting cauliflower cheese made with manchego.I especially loved the gesture of complimentary fresh toasted bread accompanied by a clove of garlic for rubbing, good olive oil for drizzling and a bowl of fresh tomato pulp for spreading over the top.
The wine list includes a good selection of cava and sherry, whilst the cocktail list features not one but four types of gin and tonic, along with a blissful sounding ‘Spanish hot toddy’: Felipe II brandy, quince syrup and lemon juice.
Tasting table stopped by and enjoyed the “big-city” (right?) flavors:
El Born skews toward the stylized latter. It oozes Catalan chic, from its long marble bar to the not-trying-too-hard-but-ridiculously-attractive staff to the circular neon pink installation-slash-light-source that provides a welcome break from Edison bulb mania. While cozy, it’s a neighborhood restaurant that feels big-city in the outer reaches of Brooklyn.
Classic Spanish flavors are here, but the presentations are a step above your typical tapas joint. Gorgeous grilled baby carrots, radishes and fennel rest on a bed of romesco sauce. Airy goat cheese croquettes ($8) are served on not-too-sweet apple compote; the chocolate-and-spice rub on two tender quail legs ($14) becomes a sort of dressing for frisee tendrils and grapes.