Last year, I was working in-house writing shelf talkers and e-mail blasts for Gnarly Vines in Fort Greene, and one of the best parts of my job was helping to put together wine dinners, where Gnarly would team up with a local eatery, we’d bring the wine, and I’d write something flowery and attractive to make people come. But with iCi, it was wasted words. I couldn’t describe properly the odd but lovely airiness to the step-down, slightly subterranean dining room, or how it felt simultaneously elegant but comfortable, like I’d eaten there a thousand times before. Or like, maybe, it was actually mine (or, you know, the thing I would dream up to be mine — which is funny because the word translates from French to mean “here.”). The food was intensely fresh, vibrating with flavor and adorned just enough to coax out the best of each part. I seem to remember I wound up staying a lot later than I thought I would.
I was really excited to see they were part of Edible’s recent Eat-Drink-Local Week. If you haven’t been, it was a really great opportunity to, well, feel what I felt and taste what I tasted, which was so memorable that a year later I can still tell you about it like I was there last night. A phantom dinner I keep eating over and over again.