Formerly an intimate, small-bites bar in one corner of chef-owner Kevin Fink’s downtown restaurant Hestia, Kalimotxo (pronounced “Kali-mocho”) has morphed into an enormously appealing casual dining spot with a Basque-inflected menu. (Meanwhile, its big sister is serving an elevated multi-course tasting menu in-house only.) Order this to go: The well-marbled eight-ounce Wagyu sirloin came perfectly medium-rare with a side of nicely browned pavé potatoes and a cheeky hazelnut chimichurri sauce. The wood-roasted chicken—about half a bird—had a luxuriously caramelized skin and moist interior and rode atop orzo set off by a tart toss of preserved-lemon butter. For a great appetizer, check out the blistered shishito chiles with aioli; they go nicely with one of the cocktails in a pouch (the Bad Rabbit blends carrot juice, tequila, and ginger). If you don’t have pastry chef Tavel Bristol-Joseph’s insanely fluffy Basque cheesecake for dessert, you will regret it for the rest of your life. Pro tip: There’s usually room to pull up right in front.
Note: Review reflects COVID-19 protocols in place at the time of visit.