Best Franco-Anything Fusion - 2004
The food created by Ian Kleinman at Indigo has been called a lot of things: post-modern, new American, fused, confused, and just plain strange, to name a few. And true, the young chef has done some unusual things here. But what's come out of all the crossover spring rolls, high-end popcorn, Mexi-French and Franco-Asian mixing fusion is a restaurant that straddles the sometimes very wide gap between houses run by chefs for foodies and those that actually want to make some money. There's an element of puckish, FTW arrogance still lingering around the fringes of this menu, but Kleinman and crew have managed to bring a whole lot of the fun back into fusion cuisine -- and that's been sadly lacking of late. And whether you're just dropping by the bar for a martini and some sesame buttered popcorn with wasabe peas and pumpkin seeds, or sitting down for a duck confit cracker-crust pizza with candied apples followed by an ancho-rubbed hanger steak with tomatillo purée, you can be sure that Indigo will deliver two things: a great meal in a great space and a peek in the direction where American cuisine may be heading.