Monday, January 13, 2014

A Fantastic Dinner At Franchia

During my visit to the Big Apple to see my big sister, I ventured to Franchia, a cute Korean restaurant that is very decorative. The menu is vast and not only includes Korean specialties, but also Japanese and Chinese specialties. We had quite the feast since we were famished.

We began the meal with some appetizers. First, we had the Crispy Scallion Pancakes ($9).

These pancakes were indeed crispy and fried to perfection. The scallion flavor was very prominent and gave the pancakes a bitter flavor. The dipping sauce accompanied the dish very well, adding even more saltiness. 

Next, we had the Assorted Dumplings ($13).

These were very interesting. The dumplings were lightly fried and filled with a variety of flavors. The first ones I tried were a variety of vegetables, which were delectable and airy. The next ones were more healthy tasting, being that they were composed of kale and were more chewy. Next, I had the spicy kimchi dumplings, which had a stronger flavor but could have been even spicier. Lastly, I had the "meat" dumplings, which were very savory and the tastiest.

Next, we had the Spicy Vegan Buffalo Wings ($9).

These were decent although pretty forgettable. The texture was a bit off and they were overly chewy. I did like the sauce, however, which gave the dish a meaty flavor and had a nice kick to it. They were also quite filling, despite there only being a few of them.

Next, we had the Spicy Tuna Roll with brown rice ($6.50).

I was never much of a sushi fan, ironically, until I turned vegan. So I always get excited when a restaurant offers a vegan version. Franchia's version was spectacular. The tuna was so realistic. It had a strong fishy flavor and even embodied the mushy consistency of the real thing. The mayo on top was very creamy and had a spicy flavor. 

Lastly, for our entree we got the Vegetarian 'Duck' Stone bowl ($18).  

This dish was superb. The mock dock was very meaty and had a perfect consistency of the right amount of chewiness. The vegetables were well cooked and coated in a lovely seasoning. The Korean spices were savory with a subtle sweet flavor.

Overall, the meal was very good. Everything was tasty and still pretty light and healthy. The vegetables were very fresh tasting and the ingredients were high quality. The only negative part of the dining experience was that they were all out of dessert! I was bummed out about that, since I had raving reviews about their cheesecake. The food was pricy, but considering the restaurant's location, it's not very surprising. Luckily, I was able to use my Green Menu card for a 10% discount, which reduced the price. I cannot wait to dine there again on my next visit to NYC.