>Baraonda: 1429 Second Ave, NY NY

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My friend- a fellow foodie, chose this restaurant for us to meet up for lunch on a rainy Sunday. It was pretty empty except for 2 other tables, probably because of the weather, and we really didn’t need the reservation I’d made.
The atmosphere is awesome: bright, cheery, bold primary colors, paper lanterns hang from the ceiling and Picasso style art decorates the walls. The walls of glass doors were all open, allowing us to enjoy the sound and sight of rain falling without getting at all wet. On a nice day, the outdoor eating area is quite large, and makes for great people watching. Even on a not-so-nice day, the awning over the outdoor section offers enough shelter to sit there, though we opted for inside since it was really coming down.
The restaurant is in the same group as Per Lei, which I reviewed a few weeks ago, and judging by these two, I have a lot of respect for their endeavors. I’ll have to plan to visit the other two soon.

I ordered an iced cappuccino- delicious and rather pretty, and the Insalata Baraonda: chopped mesclun salad with heart of palm, avocado, peppers, radish, celery & corn. What a perfect summer meal! The dressing was creamy but light, and the flavors of the garden-fresh ingredients complemented each other beautifully. With a side of bread and a sun-dried tomato spread, my lunch totally hit the spot without filling me up too much.
Our waiter was charming and attentive (and definitely took a liking to my friend, even feeding her a bit of her salad at one point, much to my amusement) and didn’t seem at all annoyed that we stayed and chatted for hours.
Overall, I was pleased with another gem in the neighborhood and would be interested in going back to try other dishes.

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