224 West 4th Street
New York, New York 10014
Contact | 212.929.0266
My matcha binge finally brought me to Chalait one August Saturday, but what took mom, Kim and me by surprised were the tartines they had to offer.
But first thing’s first. The iced matcha latte. It’s the best I’ve had in New York City. There’s only a very subtle hint of sweetness, really all you need to accompany that natural leafy flavor. Those green tea lattes at Starbucks are all sugar, while some of the new hip matcha-import shops around town don’t do enough to counter the natural bitterness. Chalait offers the perfect compromise.
Anyway, the tartines are made with the same skillful subtleness. Avocado toasts are all the rage these days, but this one actually fills you up. The chimichurri drizzle is the kicker and all that’s needed to complement the egg, avocado and arugula.
Same goes for the miso butter spread that gives the simple egg-on-toast a serious pop. We tried making this the next day at home and it’s amazing how a flavor profile as straightforward and delicious as this isn’t seen more often. Miso should seriously rival peanut butter as a spread.
The heartiest of our orders was the salmon and ricotta cheese tartine. Again, it had this lovely muted flavor that’s ideal for brunch. The poppy seed vinaigrette was light, the ricotta airy and smoked salmon without a trace of fishiness.
The space that Chalait calls home is a real reflection of its food. Seating is capped at a few bar stools and a couple small tables, and all of it drenched in sunlight. It’s pristine, simple, without anything superfluous, just like its menu.