About this time of year I start craving soups like nobody’s business. Potato, meatball, vegetable, barley, pea oh yeah pea; I can’t get enough. But this winter (I know it’s not technically winter yet but go with me here), I’ve discovered a hankering for a different kind of warming treat, the bowl of bivalves. That’s right: mussels, clams, cockles, etc.. I’m chewing through my bottom lip just thinking about it. Here’s a quick tour of some of the best bowls of shells in town.
Manila Clams at Magpie– The current offering is a ridiculous bowl of goodness featuring chili flakes, seafood broth, garlic, saffron, cherry tomatoes, and tarragon. Served with a couple of crispy spears of bread it’s a winter wonderland of goodness.
Sampan Clams at Frank Fat’s– These suckers can be a little hot, and I mean spicy hot not kitchen hot. Served with a generous wok-fried smattering of jalapenos, these puppies burn in the best possible way. If they’re not on the menu, ask for them by name, they’ll put a delicious fire in your belly.
Mussels at Tuli Bistro– They are a thing of beauty this bowl of mussels. Chock full of chorizo and soaked in a broth heartier than a hearty-shaped hearty of hearty-ness, these tasty shell creatures will put hair on your chest and will warm the cockles of your heart (by the way, anyone know where to get a good bowl of cockles?)with their ridiculous flavor and oh so bread-worthy sopping broth.
Mussels at Plan B– Saving perhaps the best for last, the mussels at Plan B at rather ridiculous affair. You can order them one of a dozen ways — white wine and garlic, coconut milk and chile, broth and herbs de provence, starsky and hutch — and you’ll never be happier than when you pair the bowl of goodness with ‘B’s impeccable pomme frittes. If you’re hankering for mussels done right, you cannot do better than Plan B.