112 East 23rd Street
New York, NY 10010
(212) 673-6666

Every time I'm on 23rd Street, I walk past Stix, an upscale kabob restaurant. I see it filled with post-work white collar folks having a glass of wine, noshing on meat sticks. I like wine. I like meat on a stick. Why aren't I in there? This ridiculousness had to end. Long story short, Shrink, my mom, was at home. I called her. "Mom, let's get dinner at Stix." And so we did.

Stix was not particularly crowded this rainy evening, which was odd. It's large inside and, having arrived early, I grabbed a table in the middle. When Shrink showed up we ordered some wine, some appetizers, and a platter and everything came out all at once. Apparently, that's just the way it's done here. So the table was slightly full.

Our meal started - in that I ate this first - with the Meat Stixball. Two skewers of beef meatballs with onion and a tzatziki sauce. Very good and not as filling as you might think. These are far from the Italian style meatballs you might be thinking about. They're highly seasoned with herbs and spices. Then I scooped myself a few spoonfuls of the Lentil Salad. If you don't enjoy legumes, I'd advise against this, but if you do enjoy them, then this salad, with honeyed apples, lime, and red pepper was a delightful side dish.

I was more than a little surprised when our waitress recommended the Steak Stix Platter over the lamb one. Mediterranean cultures, and the restaurants that represent them, love their lamb. "I don't like lamb" she said. "So I'm a little biased." Well, that was that. The steak it was. Finally the meal got heavy. A half dozen skewers of steak cubes, cooked to medium, a side of french fries, a little bowl of tzatziki sauce, and some whole wheat pita bread. We probably didn't need the appetizers after all. The meat was grilled perfectly and the pesto it came rubbed with gave it a nice zing. After filling ourselves to bursting there was one stick left. "Let's split it." I said. Shrink refused and rolled her eyes at the thought of eating anything more. I wasn't going to take home a doggy bag with one meat skewer in it so I paused, breathed deeply for a few minutes, and, like a man, had more beef.

Stix is a relaxing, fun place that I'd absolutely go back to. It wasn't too loud, the service was very good, and the food was tasty. It was upscale enough to not feel like one is eating at a wannabe chain restaurant (even though that is exactly what it is) but still casual enough that I didn't feel under-dressed in my jeans. The awning is a little tacky for my taste, but the fact is, Stix isn't fine dining. If you want something more than what you see in these photos, then there are a lot of options that will wow you. Stix will not wow you. But you'll enjoy yourself.

I lost my receipt and I used a Groupon to knock the cost down some, but the total cost for the appetizer, salad, platter for two, and two glasses of wine would have been around $100 before tip and Groupon.

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