As the year comes to an end and the idea of creating resolutions become a priority, we thought we could lend a hand in one area – eating. Whether you’re looking to eat healthier, be more balanced in your eating, or try new ethnic cuisines, Cocina Del Sur has you covered!
Owner Ronny Abenhaim used his Columbian roots to create the South American grill located in Manhattan’s Midtown area. Knowing the need to eat healthfully and enjoy some of the best in Latin flavors, his cocina allows diners to customize a salad, bowl, or plate to their specific desires. As eaters who loosely believe in moderation, we tasted a plate that included Grass Fed Hanger Steak, Sweet Plantains, and Grilled Corn & Queso, as well as a bowl that consisted of Coconut Rice, Grilled Corn, Black Beans and Corn Flake Crusted Chicken. We also topped our dishes off with healthy Tomatillo Sauce and Mango Salsa and even tried the Wild Snapper and Fresh Passion Fruit and Guanabana juices. Even though we chose to lean towards the guilty pleasure side of the scale, as opposed to guiltless delights offered, we enjoyed the fresh taste, the spice, and overall warmth and comfort the meal provided.
While there, we realized that happiness is an underlying theme throughout the restaurant. We couldn’t help but dance and smile as we initially moved through the line listening to the sounds of Celia Cruz. We also took in the bright colors, the collage of Latin imagery that graced the walls, and the neon sign that read “Eat What Makes You Happy.” Unlike other popular lunch spots – which may include a patron reaching over the sneeze guard to explain what they want – Cocina Del Sur’s staff kindly guides you through their menu choices and gives you the chance to grab a table or continue dancing a short distance away from the kitchen where the food is prepared. And to our surprise, our need to move continued in our seats while we ate, under the musical guidance of Shakira. It was as if the “sazón” was infused throughout the entire experience.
We think we may have burned a few calories dancing the whole way through, but feel free to try their more conventional healthful offerings like Organic Tofu or Grilled Zucchinis. Even so, no matter what your eating goals may be, all meals are “acompañado con” happiness – free of charge.
Cocina Del Sur is open Monday to Friday 11.00 pm to 8.00pm and is closed Saturday and Sunday. Cocina Del Sur is located at 40 West 38th Street, New York, NY.