Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Casa Review

Casa is a Brazilian restaurant on a quiet, residential corner of the West Village. It is so unassuming that were it not for one of my frequent dining companions wanting to repay me with a recommendation of his own, I may never have discovered it. It was uncrowded (though I'm told that was unusual) and quaint, a perfect setting for downing strong caipirinhas and catching up with friends.

A plate of assorted fried things filled with chicken, shrimp and cheese. The green sauce and the chopped tomato salsa were great on everything.

Beef, shrimp and cheese empanadas. The shrimp was the best one.

Some of the dishes came with the same staples — a large mound of white rice, beans and a scoop of farofa, a crunchy flour mixture. My dining companion liked the Bife Acebolado, a thin pan fried steak with onions, country vinaigrette sauce and fries.

We couldn't come here and not order the feijoada, the brazilian national dish, a casserole of black beans & prime meats also served with sauteed collard greens, vinaigrette sauce, fresh oranges & fresh chili sauce. The meat was a little on the fatty side, but quite tasty.

To mix things up, we also got the fish stew with squid, shrimp and fish in a hearty coconut milk, cilantro, tomato, and "dende" palm oil broth. It came with a side of thick fish and yucca flour puree. It was delicious and seemed bottomless.

There aren't that many Brazilian places in the city, but this one seems to do it well. The portions are huge and the food is well seasoned. You'll definitely leave satisfied.

If you're looking for dessert elsewhere, a good option not too far away is Blue Ribbon Bakery.

You might go for a root beer float or an ice cream soda. One of my dining companions invented her own — a 7-Up float.

We also ordered the famous chocolate chip bread pudding, which was different than most other bread puddings I've had where the dessert doesn't seem to have a hint of the bread in the name. This bread pudding was less soaked — the chunks of baguette still retained a sense of crispness. But the heavy chocolate fudge was good quality chocolate and wonderful with the vanilla ice cream.

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