January 8, 2013 | Short Order

My Shocking Short Ribs Obsession


          I was noodling away revisiting images of great dishes I’d eaten in 2012 for my December 17, 2012 BITE. Then was when a frightening insight struck me.  I seem to have a raging appetite for short ribs.  Short ribs at Arlington Club.  Short ribs at The Library in the Public. Short ribs at Morso. And ohmyohmyohmy…the monolithic short rib at Il Buco Alimentari.  I clicked on the picture and I got so warm I had to shed a sweater.


          Of course I realize it’s crowded here in my obsession.  “Plush Short Ribs Replace Stringy Brisket for Passover” was the headline on Melissa Clark’s NYTimes confession and recipe this past March 30.


          For friends and family similarly addicted, here are my short rib highs of 2012.


 Il Buco Alimentari Short Rib


          That brobdingnaguan mammal at Il Buco Alimentari. It’s no challengeto gather  gourmand friends when I hunger for a reprise. I notice it evolves a bit from time to time. Although first loves are the best: the blackened crusty monster wrestled to the platter on  its brontaaurus bone, evoking squeals and moans.  Yes it unimaginably tender, fatty, of course, the celery, fresh horseradish and bright green olives balancing the richness with salt and bitter, plus a scattering of walnuts for no reason I can fathom. By Justin Smillie. 53 Great Jones Street between Bowery and Lafayettte. 212 837 2622


 The Library at The Public Short Rib


          Short rib goulash with caraway sour cream arrived after we’d already immersed ourselves in sticky fennel-glazed St. Louis ribs for a warm-up. But that didn’t dull my enthusiasm. By Andrew Carnellini at The Library at The Public. 425 Lafayette Street  between East 4th Street and Astor Place. 212 539 8777


 Arlington Club Short Ribs


          American Waygu beef short rib under a thatch of greens with lemon confit, and rosemary breadcrumbs. This cut would be fatty enough on its own but since it’s Wagyu, it’s doubly opulent. By Laurent Turondel at Arlington Club. 1032 Lexington Avenue between 73rd and 74th Streets. 212 249 5700


 Barrio 47 Pappardelle with Short Ribs


          Pappardelle with short ribs might better be called short ribs on pappardelle. The beef arrives in a rectangular hulk, juicy and fatter than Elvis, with carrots, parsnip and pearl onions on house made noodles by Franco Barrio at Barrio 47.  47 Eight Avenue between Jane and Horatio at 4th Street. 212 255 3900


 Morso Short Ribs


          Well actually it's Stracotta, “brisket, Florentine Style,” according to the menu. But it’s rich and fatty alongside house-made papparadelle. By Pino Luongo at Morso. 420 East 59th Street between First Avenue and Sutton Place. 212 759 2706


Duck's Eatery Short Ribs 


          First I fell for the lush, fatty, hickory-smoked St. Louis pork ribs. But it was the galloping umami of the short ribs that blew my cool. I felt it in my toes. Sliced like Shanghai pork chop, the platter looked so unassuming.  First comes the unexpected crunch, next the brute attack of meat, then the chili after-kick. I took one bite straight, the next dipped into sweet soy vinegar, then a third bite straight. I absolutely did not say Oh My God, not wanting to be a cliché. By Will Horowitz at Ducks Eatery. By the way, the line forms early for the 6:30 door opening on Duck’s Brisket Tuesday 351 East12 Street between Second and Third Avenues. 212 432 3825


Photographs may not be used without permission from Gael Greene. Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.


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