Beginning each Friday night and working by way of a lot of the weekend, the Prospect Heights stretch of Vanderbilt Avenue, working from Atlantic Avenue to Park Place, hosts one of many metropolis’s most beloved and busiest block events. Bars and eating places arrange tables on the street final 12 months, internet hosting teams of households and pals for picnics on the median, with stay performances showing out of nowhere—an unbelievable instance of town’s pandemic-era Open Streets program.
Becoming a member of the merriment with its grand opening this weekend is a terrific new Thai restaurant referred to as The Nuaa Desk, situated on the nook of Bergen Road (former residence to the favored Beast). The spot is a sequel of kinds for chef Pitipong Bowornneeranart, who ran the kitchen on the well-regarded Nuaa on the Higher East Facet till that institution closed in 2018, and based mostly on a stunning meal final Sunday on the new Brooklyn spot, it is clear that Bowornneeranart is equally adept at extra bold fare in addition to acquainted Thai crowd-pleasers.
The Nuaa Desk practices the ideas of the Gradual Meals Motion, which (as was defined to me by my pleasant server) principally signifies that there is not any prep cooking concerned; every dish is created from scratch every time, with Bowornneeranart giving his full consideration to every step of the method. This doesn’t suggest the meals was gradual to reach at my desk, although.
All 4 of the dishes I ate right here have been fantastic—I favored the earthy flavors of Bowornneeranart’s Pan Seared Vegetable Dumplings, the pair of thick-skinned inexperienced discs full of butternut squash, mushroom, and “7 varieties vegetable,” a drizzle of spicy soy vinegar on high. Considered one of my Thai restaurant regulars is Spicy and Bitter Lemongrass Soup, and the Nuaa Desk model didn’t disappoint, the tangy, fragrant broth residence to 3 fats shrimp and a complete mess of oyster mushrooms.
The “Road Traditional” part of the menu has a bunch of interesting entree-sized choices, nearly all priced within the mid teenagers, together with two sorts of Rooster Curry (Crimson and Inexperienced), Crispy Purple Eggplant, Shrimp Pad Thai, and, my choice, an excellent Sautéed Spicy Holy Basil with Minced Pork. This mound of meat was alive with Thai basil (“actual Thai basil,” my server assured me, “not the faux stuff”), chili garlic sauce, fiery dried chilis, and a runny egg. It was simply as pleasurable the subsequent night time as a reheated leftover, too.
Better of all, although, was Bowornneeranart’s Crunchy Curried Rice Ball Salad, the lumps of seasoned grains all chewy and crisp, the dish loaded with bits of bitter sausage. A wide range of greens accompanies the pile, to make use of as wraps. Different intriguing objects embrace Gradual Braised Quick Ribs with Massaman Curry, Colossal Crab Curry Noodle, and a Thai Roasted Cornish Hen, a dish that Bowornneeranart appears to have resurrected from his UES days.
The bi-level inside is elegantly designed and appears snug and alluring, but when it isn’t raining you are most likely going to wish to sit at one of many outdoors tables, both on the sidewalk, or on the patch of turf behind the constructing’s iron fencing. But when it is the weekend and so they resolve to affix the occasion, head out to Vanderbilt Avenue. The Nuaa Desk is a pleasant addition to an already vigorous scene right here.
The Nuaa Desk is situated at 638 Bergen Road, on the nook of Vanderbilt Avenue, and is at present open from 5 p.m. to 10 every day (718-623-6395; thenuaatable.com)