Fantastic a casa Fox
a casa fox, what another great find on Orchard St. After The Orchard, Noodle Bar, Little Giant, and Blue Elm, I thought I had exhausted the grub options that little street on the LES has to offer. But no, on an Opentable-inspired whim, I discovered a casa fox.
This tiny Latin/Spanish restaurant just below Houston literally oozes charm. It is slinky, quiet, and comfortable. One roughly finished room, the perhaps 20-seat glorified hole-in-the-wall has bright bohemian cushions tossed on dark wood benches, handkerchief napkins, and a tattered library with tilting books and tealight candles on a stone/concrete wall. A cozy fireplace on one wall isn’t lit, yet tall pillar candles burn away. Slick electronica tunes from Zero 7 and The Scissor Sisters softly play in the background. The tantalizing smells of spices and grilled meats waft from the open kitchen. a casa fox encapsulates ‘date spot,’ infusing comfortable casual dining with irresistable Latin sensuality.
While the ‘camped out in a stone cottage in a rustic Spanish town’ vibe is the main seduction factor, the food isn’t half-bad either. In fact, the tapas-centric menu offers up some creative twists on classic empanadas, bocaditos, and clay pot dinners. The kitchen sends out small plates bursting with flavor. The empanadas are flaky and doughy with interesting fillings like portabello mushroom and smoked gouda. I just wish there was more of the filling in each empanada – seemed a bit skimpy. The fried risotto balls are delicious – stuffed with slightly crispy risotto and gooey cheese, you just can’t go wrong. The real highlight though was the Spanish take on mozzarella sticks – fried manchego cheese with membrillo. The sharp manchego paired beautifully with the sweet and gelatinous quince. My friend Alex and I loved it so much that we capped off our meal with a second order!
The food isn’t complicated and the vibe is super relaxed; however, a casa fox seduces with foxy music, a charming waitress, and an uber-cool rustic decor. The clientele are private, unpretentious, and mellow, most likely from the surrounding neighborhood. This cozy find is ideal for a romantic date (think: splitting a piping hot clay pot dinner over a pitcher of divine sangria, small candles flickering against unfinished stone…), a laidback dinner with a few friends, or a lazy lingering sangria outing that spans the entire evening.
Note: a casa fox is also available for private or corporate events – they will rent out the entire space and cater the meal.