Two new restaurants are pointing a spotlight on the inconspicuous East Village half-street known as Extra Place. Both share a door, a kitchen crew headed by Michael Han, formerly of Ciano, and an owner, Amadeus Bogner, formerly of Hung Ry — but they are two very different siblings.
Extra Place, named for the alleyway itself, is an unfussy Mediterranean restaurant with a street food twist. Specializing in German-Turkish döner, their elevated, organic version — made on four rotisseries in an open kitchen — features heritage Long Island Crescent duck, Berkshire pork belly or Maine lobster, nestled into warm pita made in-house with organic Champlain Valley flour.
A number of entrees, including a whole Bo Bo chicken from upstate New York, rack of lamb served with farrotto, roasted baby eggplant and cucumber mint coulis, are served in two-person portions. We think of döner as a late-night food, and Extra Place agrees: You can sip aperitif cocktails, wine and beer (some for just $3.50!) inside the 50-seat restaurant or at outdoor tables until two in the morning.
The only thing better than 2:00am döner is 2:00am fondue, served up next door at sister restaurant Heidi. Boasting an open kitchen full of copper pots and a wall replete with taxidermy, the tiny 20-seat eatery (it also has outdoor seating) brings a touch of après-ski to the Bowery. Gyalsten Ethenpa of Blaue Gans is Michael Han’s chef de cuisine, and together they’ve helped interpret Bogner’s Swiss roots with a menu that highlights cheeses, sausages and cured meats.
The distinctive beer and imported, partially-organic wine list is a perfect complement to the hearty, rustic cuisine. Start with the chicken lollipops, duck rillettes or a carpaccio of sliced brisket. Don’t miss a grilled white Quality Meats veal sausage, served alongside traditional rösti and sweet onion confit. The piece de resistance is a fondue for two, accented with garlic, dry white wine and a three-cheese medley of Gruyère, tangy cow’s milk Appenzell and creamy Vacherin Fribourgeois, served in a deep cauldron with a sourdough baguette.
Both of these European-influenced restaurants have all the elements of a perfect Manhattan meal: traditional cuisine made with quality local ingredients, including hormone- and antibiotic-free meats, served in an intimate, secretive location — for now. Let’s keep this between us, shall we?
6 Extra Place
New York, NY 10003
8 Extra Place
New York, NY 10003
“On Our Radar” features restaurants that might meet Clean Plates standards, but haven’t been fully vetted and reviewed yet. For a directory of reviewed restaurants, see our Restaurant Finder.
Images courtesy of Heidi and Extra Place.