There is a phenomenon at some restaurants when you find a dish that is just so good that you must go back for that dish and no matter what other enticements the menu offers, you stick with that one dish over and over again. And each time you leave somewhat guilty and rueful that you didn’t try something new. I’ve only been to Gotan twice, but I recognize that I’m in a one-dish-groove at the sleek coffee shop and then some café in the heart of Tribeca—one of its three locations. And my go-to at Gotan is the scrambled cheddar biscuit ($8.00).
The appearance and texture of the eggs is something wondrous to behold. It’s not an omelet. It’s not scrambled eggs as its name would lead you to believe. These eggs are something truly other, a kind of wobbly orb of egg beautifully striped with amber waves of cheddar. The thing is notably not airy like a souffle, but glorious, gooey, substantial, all topped with a handful of chives. The biscuit, I might add, is sturdy enough to convey the cheesy eggs to your mouth but not stolid, a worthy specimen. And the bottom half has a flavorful smear of tomato tapenade, which, along with a few drops of hot sauce from the cutest mini bottle you’ve ever seen, add a zesty touch.
So, there are other alluring dishes on the quite reasonable slightly Mideastern slanted menu. If I ever stray from my go-to at Gotan, then these items do tempt: Whitefish bialy ($8.50) in the breakfast column, fattoush with feta salad ($11.50) and the haloumi and roasted pepper ($11), the beet, hard boiled egg ($10.50) and the eggplant & egg flatbread ($11) sandwiches. And all these temptations aside, the atmosphere and decore is sleek, unfussy, and judging by the number of open laptops, Gotan is a nice place to nosh as you work.
130 Franklin Street (near Varick)