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Wednesday, January 29, 2014


When I say I'm going to eat downtown, I usually mean East Village, Lower East Side, SoHo, or West Village.  Rarely does "downtown" mean anything lower than that.  But when two of your friends live basically at the bottom tip of the city, you may have to travel a bit.  This time, a dinner date with Andrew and Lee took us to the relatively unexplored area of TriBeCa.  We met at Macao, a dark restaurant with a mysterious vibe that brings together Chinese and Portuguese cuisine (Macao is a former Portuguese colony in China).  Dark and mysterious also manifests itself in the artwork.  If you happen to eat downstairs, pay attention to the artwork lining the wall and in the curio - it's all Chinese people having sex.  If that doesn't get you excited for supper, I don't know what will.

I recommend appetizers as your meal here - whether it's done tapas style for the group or just as a two apps instead of an entrée for your dinner thing.  The only dish that didn't get a thumbs up for the evening was, indeed, an entrée - the hake, to be exact.  We started by sharing the squid salad, the lamb meatballs, and the shrimp mozambique.  The shrimp was the table favorite because the sauce was great for bread sopping.  It had a strong black pepper flavor without being spicy.  I wasn't too hungry so I just ordered the red kale salad for my entrée.  It had very thinly sliced crispy potatoes instead of croutons, sheep's milk cheese, and a paprika vinaigrette.  It was actually very satisfying since kale requires lots of chewing.  I also had quite a few bites of Albert's bacon and shrimp fried rice.  It was great.  It came with an over easy egg on top which added lots of flavor.  Considering it's only $9 as a side, this gives you the most bang for your buck.  Just because the restaurant lists it on the bottom of the page as a side dish, don't overlook it.  They may consider it an afterthought, but you shouldn't....kinda like traveling downtown for dinner.

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