graffiti food and wine bar

Carol Song, Opening Ceremony’s Head Buyer, Favorite Spot,

Graffiti, Jehangir Mehta’s East Village cafe, is not wanting for sweetness. Fortunately, it’s the endearing kind, not the sugary overload one might anticipate from a pastry chef-turned-restaurateur. The restaurant serves a short menu of Asian fusion small plates, most with an Indian accent. Some of the dishes hit their marks, like the unlikely combination of pork dumplings and grapefruit confit. But the flops flop hard, like a beef-stuffed sesame pancake sandwich that costs 10 times what one pays for an infinitely better version down at the Dumpling House on Eldridge Street in Chinatown. And the space is comically small, and it feels smaller still because of the plush sea of throw pillows and too many chairs. It’s too bad: Graffiti’s stabs at hospitality would play better on a bigger stage, and Mr. Mehta’s creative cooking could be more fully realized if it were coming from a full kitchen, not a nook the size of a pantry. — Peter Meehan

224 East 10th Street
(First Avenue)
New York, N.Y. 10003
(212) 677-0695