Go west, young chef…
La Contenta, the minuscule Lower East Side restaurant that cultivated a following for its cocina del barrio and cocktails made with lesser-known agave spirits, has spawned a sibling in the West Village. Called appropriately La Contenta Oeste, the new location will be more than a clone of the original, offering breakfast, lunch, brunch, and a late-night menu in addition to dinner.
At dinner the more popular dishes from the Norfolk Street store, such as shrimp ceviche ($14) and chicken mole ($21), are carried over, but expect to find some novel creations, some of which speak with a French accent. Consider chicken “Wellington” (quotes theirs) with a huitlacoche duxelles and caramelized cambray onion.
The breakfast menu features shrimp chorizo with poblano pepper and egg and grilled liver with onion confit. There is also an off-menu croque monsieur (in homage to David Bowie, who was an habitué of the location when it was called French Roast).
The cocktail program at Oeste will continue to feature concoctions fashioned with bacanora, raicilla, and sotol, as well as a Jalisco-style sangria made with tequila.
The space itself is open and airy with murals of the Aztec-feathered serpent god Quetzalcoatl gazing down on the crowd.
La Contenta Oeste, 78 West 11th Street, 212-533-2233. Open for breakfast daily, 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.; for lunch Monday through Friday, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; for dinner daily, 5:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.; brunch weekends 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; late night daily, 11:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.