The buzzy Pan-Asian restaurant is known for their innovative food, tasty cocktails, and cool vibes (music & décor). We love the culinary hotspot for all of these reasons, but one of our favorite things about Talde is that there is no end to Executive Chef Ruby Felix and Assistant Manager and master mixologist Michelle DeSantis' creativity.
The star duo's latest innovations are the new fall dinner and cocktail menus, which Felix describes as "comforting dishes with a touch of elegance," and DeSantis says is comprised of "fresh produce, unique flavors full of Asian influences along with colorful aesthetics." Felix and DeSantis worked together to create a cohesive offering across the board, using fresh autumnal flavors and ingredients. While they were both inspired by seasonal fruits and vegetables that are unique to the area, giving both the food and cocktails maximum freshness and flavor, Felix was also inspired by comfort food. Felix noted, "With the new menu I was able to put more of myself on the plate and express my voice."
Their inspiration and teamwork created incredibly cohesive (and mouth-wateringly delicious) cocktail and food menus. DeSantis remarked that they take the time to use those fruits and vegetables "so whatever our guests choose to order—whether it be a dish from the dinner menu, a tapas or a snack at our bar, or a cocktail—will carry similar or complementing flavor profiles and familiar notes." With this in mind, Felix aims to offer a healthy menu packed with flavor. This seasons' fresh produce has yielded a more vegetarian-friendly menu, which was also inspired by Felix's home town in the Philippines.
The cultural and seasonal influences are very evident in the crispy little bite that is the Korean Fried Chicken (KFC), with it's juicy gochujang glaze. You can also experience the perfectly harmonious flavor profiles in the Autumn 75 (Corgi Earl Grey Gin, cranberry & sage syrup, lemon juice, and Prosecco), which pairs well with Kale Salad (with roasted sweet potato, pickled cranberry, candied hazelnuts, and sherry-roasted vinaigrette) and the Kabocha Squash Dumplings (with shiitake mushrooms, brown butter chili sauce, and sage). And these are just the appetizers…
Getting in to the main courses, you'll find more even more "flavors that correlate with the nostalgia of the season" such as turmeric, ginger, and carrots, and herbs such as rosemary and sage. The What's Up, Doc? is the perfect drink example of these flavors, with Creyente Mezcal, turmeric syrup, carrot juice, smashed ginger, and fresh lemon juice. This is basically an alcoholic version of my personal favorite fresh-pressed juice, and I'm pretty sure it'll keep you healthy all season.
You'll notice that the flavors in the What's Up, Doc?, along with the Seasonal Mule that contains pomegranate/rosemary puree go exceptionally well with the Thai Fried Chicken (with minted grapes), the Pot-au-Pho (with the juiciest fall-off-the-bone short rib and lots of veggies), and the Maitake Mushroom Dan Dan (with roasted hazelnuts).
While you're already in for a real feast with all of these entrees, the larger-than-life sides can't be forgotten about. Most notably, you should try the Harvest Fried Rice (with squash, Halal spice, spicy red sauce, tangy white sauce, and pickled golden raisins), the Delicata Squash (atop a bed of crispy brussels), and the #8 (crispy brussels with lemongrass, kaffir lime, galangal, and crispy shallots).
Felix and DeSantis have truly created such a warm and cozy culinary experience with this menu and with each bite and each sip, you can taste the fresh ingredients and the bursts of Asian-inspired flavors. Definitely be sure to check out some—if not all—of these autumnal items whether for dinner or at one of their many weekly events: Monday Wings & Whiskey, Tapas Tuesday, Wine Wednesday, or industry Happy Hour on Thursdays.
Written by Sasha Kleinman
Born and raised in NJ, Sasha is a recent transplant to Jersey City and has become obsessed with everything the city has to offer. Sasha is a fashion copywriter by day, and die-hard Jane Do enthusiast and (vegetarian) foodie by night. When she's not stuffing her face at one of Chilltown's amazing restaurants, having a couple brewskis at the local brewery Departed Soles, or snuggling with your dog, Sasha is busy traveling the globe with camera (and fork) in hand. Follow her wide array of adventures @thehungrygrowlers!