ADDRESS: 467 Columbus Avenue
(Between 82nd and 83rd Streets)
New York, NY 10024
WEB SITE: www.bluecaravan.com
TELEPHONE: (212) 595-4300
FAX: (212) 595-4333
HOURS: Breakfast: 8:00 AM – 12:00 Noon, Mon.-Fri.
Lunch: 12:00 Noon – 4:00 PM, Mon.-Fri.
Dinner: 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM, Mon.-Sun.
Bar/Lounge: 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM, Sun.-Thurs.
5:00 PM – 1:00 AM, Fri-Sat.
Brunch: 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM, Sat.-Sun.
Happy Hour: 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM, Mon.-Fri.
CUISINE: Modern Tapas and Global Cuisine
Restaurateur/Chef Mei Chau
CREDIT CARDS: All major cards accepted
PRICE RANGE: Lunch: $ 7 – $20
Dinner: $ 7 – $30
DRESS: Casual Elegant
SEATING CAPACITY: Dining Room: 40
Private Party Room: 30
Outdoor Café: 20
NUMBER OF ROOMS: 3
PARTY FACILITIES: Available upon request
(Private Party Room and Bar/Lounge are
available for customized private parties and
On Monday evenings, from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM, the
Bar/Lounge features live world music.
OUTDOOF CAFÉ: A charming outdoor café on a lively street will seat 20 people.
OWNER/CHEF: Mei Chau
BEVERAGE/WINE DIRECTOR: Jeffrey Palumbo
OPENING DATE: April, 2011
Blue Caravan, is a stylish, spacious Upper West Side eclectic brasserie, featuring modern tapas (small plates) and global cuisine (dinner plates). The restaurant, which opened in April 2011, is owned by Restaurateur/Chef Mei Chau. formally of the award winning Franklin Station Café in Tribeca, which was one of our favorite restaurants in its day.
Blue Caravan is also one of the most exciting restaurants to open on the Upper West Side in years and is an outstanding discovery. The ambiance reveals itself through a 12-foot high ceiling, lacquered wood candlelit tables, rattan and fabric-upholstered chairs and beautiful contemporary photography and artwork adorning the walls of the restaurant by the owner’s husband, Marc Kaczmarek (check out his bio: www.marckaczmarek), an acclaimed professional photographer. There are Brazilian cherry wood floors, stylish chrome mirrors, mood lighting, and an open kitchen to create a handsome setting.
Blue Caravan’s seasonal global menus are sophisticated and creative, yet simple and earthy. Mei Chau’s menu is inspired by the multi-cultural influences of her native Malaysia and its popular small plates. As such, it showcases modern tapas (small plates) and global cuisine (dinner plates), thus allowing Mei the creative freedom to create new dishes regularly so that the menu constantly evolves. It is also an outstanding bargain with appetizers starting at $7 and entrees from $16. A copious dinner of small plates can be enjoyed for a token $20 per person or less. It is prudent to save room for the elegant entrees and to accompany one’s meal with a selection of the excellent wines from a user friendly list on the back of the menu.
Blue Caravan features a fine selection of global wines. The international wine list, created by Mei and Beverage Director Jeffrey Palumbo, changes seasonally and is continually evolving. A variety of wines by the glass are also available. We enjoyed wines a full bodied Pinot Gris, from Bott Freres 2008 for $32 the bottle and a fresh and sprightly Rioja Lan Crianza 2006, also $32. There is also a food friendly Riesling and Pinot Grigio by the glass (glass prices from $7 to $10).
When ordering, note that Ms. Chau’s global dishes and sauces are enhanced by an eclectic selection of fresh, flavorful herbs and spices from all around the world. Her use of fresh fruits, seasonal ingredients as well as a variety of global flavors is the foundation of Blue Caravan’s culinary style.
Recommended small dishes include a succulent Shrimp, with garlic, parsley and white wine; zesty Chicken Wings ginger and soy sauce; a fabulous Jasmine Tea Smoked Mackerel, with seaweed tartar sauce and beetroot crisps.; Kabocha and Potato Gratin with cucumber and dill salad (the best vegetarian dish we’ve tasted in ages; Nyonya Mussels, were mildly curried, delicious and also offered Provencal style); Steamed Clam chorizo, white wine, garlic: light and luscious Braised Oxtail Dumplings In Their Own Broth with thai basil beansprouts and crispy shallots; a terrific Pork Bun filled with slow roasted pork belly, ginger hoisin sauce, shitake mushroom, garlic show pea shoots and two dishes, soon to be on the menu from Malaysia that are worth requesting: Laksa (There are two basic types of laksa: curry laksa and asam laksa. Curry laksa is a coconut curry soup with noodles, while asam laksa is a sour fish soup with noodles. Thick rice noodles also known as laksa noodles are most commonly used). Here, the chef demonstrates a free hand and uses Udon Noodles to great advantage. Steamed Seafood in an ethereal fish mousse is another original creation sourced by Mei’s homeland.
Entrees offer a lovely PAN SEARED RED SNAPPER with Jerusalem artichoke puree, and a terrific ROAST MONKFISH with Sautéed Brussels Sprouts; Eggplant Fan roasted eggplant, zucchini, summer squash and tomato fans, quinoa stuffed artichoke; and a minor miracle: Giant Prawns, perfectly grilled with herbs and spices. and Ginger Red Pepper Sauce. If in doubt, go for the DAILY CHEF’S TASTING PLATE.
We were too full to sample desserts, but the seductive coffee machine emitted a haunting aroma, which we will sample on another occasion, perhaps brunch. Blue Caravan, with its romantic setting, friendly and attentive service, superb kitchen and gentle prices along with a personalized and welcoming proprietorship, offers a unique dining experience for all to enjoy. Absolutely a delight!
Copyright 2011 By Punch In International. All Rights Reserved