After overloading on meat at Blue Smoke, you may want to try some lighter gluten free fare. Gobo is a vegetarian restaurant on the Upper East Side and the West Village with a pretty substantial gluten free offering. (They are not part of GFRAP, so double check ingredients and preparation techniques with your server.)
Gobo touts itself as “food for the five senses.” I love the ambiance and the attitude towards food that they cultivate in their restaurant. On this visit with my friend Molly, we ordered together. She eschewed the dinner rolls and requested a gluten free menu so that I could enjoy it all without fear of “contamination.” Molly has particular empathy for the difficulty of eating gluten free. She was instructed by a doctor to try a gluten free diet for a few months when they suspected she might have Celiac. Luckily she doesn’t, but she is so kind in helping me feel included. I baked these gluten-free orange vanilla dreams for her cookie party.
We were starving when we arrived at Gobo, having just finished a yoga class. Unfortunately the service was quite slow. The server did apologize for the delays and gave us dessert on the house. It’s amazing how much better this made us feel.Our first course was the Cappuccino French Lentil Truffle Soup. While the name is fancy, it’s a basic Lentil Soup. The Cappuccino refers to a froth that normally tops the soup, but that had “collapsed” before reaching our table. After seeing a special on lentils on the Food Network, I haven’t been able to get enough. I would definitely order this again.
The Curried Cauliflower Salad with pine nuts and red currants was unlike anything I had ever eaten. Part of the cauliflower is shaved down to an almost couscous consistency with small cauliflower florets curried and mixed with the pine nuts and currants. It’s a cold salad and quite light and tasty. While I really enjoyed the flavors, I would add some cardamom if I were to try to make it at home.
The Eggplant stuffed with herbed tofu cheese was perfect. It is similar to eggplant parmesan without a heavy or greasy feel. I didn’t know what to expect from “herbed tofu cheese,” but it tasted just like a regular dairy cheese when served with the eggplant and tomato basil sauce.
While I wasn’t able to get a good photo of the Creamed Spinach Gratin and Prunes with Cognac, it was our last dish. It’s relatively small and the spinach is unremarkable, but the Prunes were amazing. I don’t remember the last time I even ate a prune before this meal, but the way they were cooked highlighted the sweet and savory flavors in a totally unexpected way. I now feel the need to figure out a way to incorporate prunes into a homemade dish. Any ideas?
We decided to indulge in dessert even before we knew it would be on the house. My favorite dish of the night – Warm pineapple in rum caramel topped with Soy Ice Cream and Toasted Coconut. Need I say more? Molly and I were in heaven, savoring every last morsel.
I will without a doubt be back at Gobo again soon. With two locations, they make gluten free dining even more convenient.
Gobo Uptown: 1426 3rd Ave, New York 10028 Btwn 80th & 81st St Phone: 212-288-5099
Gobo Downtown: 401 6th Ave, New York 10014 Btwn Waverly Pl & 8th St Phone: 212-255-3242
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