It’s too soon to declare tater tots a trend, but we’ve noticed them surfacing on menus all over town. It makes sense with all the fried chicken, biscuits, and bacon. Maybe some chefs were getting bored of french fries, or they wandered through the freezer aisle and got inspired to reinvent this frozen finger food.
Tater tots are really just bite-sized hash browns, or as the Australians say, “potato pom-poms.” We found some creative, low and highbrow spins on this comfort food classic, like pork belly studded tots at Dylan Prime or jalapeno-bacon at Heartland Brewery, or a classic tot at Crif Dogs.
113 St. Marks Place
Crif Dogs’ annex — the not-so-secret PDT [Please Don’t Tell]
cocktail lounge — hogs most of the attention for their cocktails and deep-fried dogs. But the tater tots on Crif Dog’s menu are phenomenal. Served in a tinfoil wrapper, they look just like they came out
of your mom’s oven. Hands down, these are the crispiest tot we’ve tasted yet.
62 Laight St.
Tribeca stalwart prides itself on its contemporary take on the steakhouse, so
it’s not surprising they’ve gotten creative with the tater tot. Chef
Christopher Cipollone fries his potatoes with bits of pork belly and serves
them in a apple cideer and veal reduction. The result is a sweet, salty,
nearly opulent tot.
44 Bedford St.
Most come to this West Village spot for a martini and a burgers, but the their mastery of fried
potatos is well-known among neighborhood regulars. Their flaky and defiantly non-greasy rendition are accompanied by a Tabasco-spiked ketchup.
111 E. 22nd St.
The tater at this Gramercy steakhouse is an unexpected cross between two classic sides — hashbrowns and an iceberg wedge with blue cheese. This croquette-shaped version oozes wtih a warm blue cheese center that lends it a unusually tangy flavor.
Heartland Brewery Burger
127 W. 43rd St.
The Times Square burger joint — a spinoff of Heartland
Brewery — is better known for its burgers, but the real find is the spicy jalapeño-bacon tater tots. The exterior is crunchy well-battered
exterior, while the inside has the unique texture of a double-stuffed potato. It’s a little like a mashed potato bon bon.
Gus & Gabriel Gastropub
222 W. 79th St.
Comfort food’s the only thing on the menu at Michael Psilakis’s latest venture. (Think Greek diner on steroids.) These oversized tater tots are stuffed with a mix of pulled pork, cheddar, and
jalapeño. Instead of the traditional ketchup side kick, these come with both a spicy barbeque and cheese fondue dipping sauce.