I owe Alobar a debt of sorts. Years ago, when post-college life was as far off as it was abstract, my brother had targeted this very eatery in a bout of exploration. It was during that trip that Long Island City snuggled its way into our hearts and real estate ambitions. Today, I live 10 minutes away; today I make my rounds to pay homage to the pioneers of Long Island City eating.
The space opens, as one would surmise, with its bar. Regretfully, I had come doused with a monstrous serving of antibiotics, and will have nothing to say on the matter. I have no doubt however, that I would have otherwise found this to be the star of the meal. Shuffling past with one last longing look, we are seated in the back dining area, a cozy distance away from the kitchen.
With my sinuses in painful flux, I had ordered the soup to start. The Italian style onion soup had a precious stream of steam, but better yet, had some bread with body. With a more gentle portion of cheese than its French compatriot, this was definitely a good start – but do my dulled taste buds still detect a sodium kick?
For the entrees, there was much excitement for the duck confit sloppy joe. The term confit is fantastically near and dear to my heart, and when it arrived, I had immediately requested my friend part with a bite. Sloppy indeed. And the crispness of the confit definitely suffered in this treatment, but the flavors were there. Again, the salt streak was somewhat alarming. Even though I had pegged the end of my days with the inevitability of kidney failure, this was to a level that made me rethink my timeline.
Turning back to my burger, medium rare with swiss and onions–I was sated for sure. The skin-on fries were decent, and the burger, solidly and sustainably prepared. I’ll mention here that apparently, Alobar is a place to buy buy into the hipster frou-frou Portlandia craze. Be my guest, but however humanely they were treated prior to joining us for dinner, our ingredients definitely enjoyed now a much brinier treatment.
As the anti-salt mayor Bloomberg had famously done during his visit last year to LIC, I turned down dessert. I however, stayed my hand on the tip line–only the mayor can ball at 30%. All in all, the menu is packed with plates to make you salivate, but go forth drink-in-hand–they’re serious about having you thirsty.
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