The Palomar, modern day Jersusalem cuisine as they call it, in the middle of bustling Soho. The intimate restaurant almost feels out of place among the theaters, Chinatown, and much larger restaurants for the theater crowd. This had been on my to-eat list for some time and despite not being able to snag a solo reservation online, I was determined to make this happen. And happen it did.
One grey, Saturday afternoon, I arrived just as The Palomar opened and thought I could sneak in a seat at the bar. Wrong. I ended up having to wait to see if there were any no-shows. Bubble burst: there were not. By this point I was maybe half an hour into my project and was committed. Had the hostess and barwoman not been so lovely with setting me up with space outside to read and drink prosecco, I would have certainly left, but damnit if they were not wonderful.
So, an hour-ish later, the crowds for the early matinee left The Palomar, which landed me a seat at the bar which overlooks the working kitchen. As you can see here, you are right up close to the action which is always fun when dining solo, though it does encourage you to order more dishes as so many wonderful things fly by in front of your nose.
The waiter recommended 3-4 plates per person. I started with the tzaziki and pita fresh from the oven. Delightful.
I then moved onto a crunchy fattoush salad which sat on a bed of labneh.
Then, of course, I had to try the octopus which was phenomenal.
I would absolutely return to Palomar in the future as a mecca of small plates. However, I would only do so if a reservation could be secured. This particular day, I had nothing but time, but how often does that happen? The restaurant had to turn many people away due to space constraints, but stubborn me was going to eat an octopus and I am pleased that it lived up to its expectation.