Black Tap skyrocketed in popularity recently with their extravagant desserts and picture-perfect burgers, and interestingly enough, the restaurant has only been open for less than a year! Once I saw all the Instagram posts about this hot spot, I knew that it was crucial to check it out ASAP.
I hit the place with two great high school friends right in the heart of SoHo. The place was substantially smaller than expected, especially since Black Tap’s sister in the Meatpacking District looked much bigger (at least from the outside). The place is bar seating only, so seating is tight and limited. Regardless, we had about a ten minute wait, and then had the honor of entering the world of Black Tap.
The second you sit down and settle, you realize how cool the vibe is. The waiters and staff are the right combination of down-to-earth and professional, and they were super friendly. The staff got a huge kick out of photobombing our pictures.
The decor is spot-on. The atmosphere is rugged and raw, with stacks of beer cans, loose cook books, mason jar glasses, and vintage posters. It’s messy, and yet it feels clean. The music was precisely to my liking, and fit the atmosphere tremendously well. I applaud their hip-hop throwbacks and strong beats, and I’ll always favor a place that plays Roses by Outkast.
But anyways, on to the point — the FOOD. After some exploration via the Internet and Instagram, I came to see that their Kobe truffle burger looked dapper. I raised an eyebrow at the fact that it wasn’t even on the menu, but when I ordered it, the waitstaff gave me a sharp grin of approval. They also suggest you order dessert at the same time as your entree, since it takes time to build their extravagant sugar concoctions.
There are three milkshakes — sweet and salty, cookie, and cotton candy. All three of them look divine, but given that we knew us three girls wouldn’t be able to handle burgers and three shakes, we made the careful decision to only order two. We ordered the sweet and salty milkshake, and the cookie milkshake.
Now, first, the burger. I honestly do not remember the last time I had such a perfect burger. It was simple. Good bun, GREAT wagyu beef, arugula, truffles, cheese, and whatever else they throw into it secretly. Perfection. The burger was tender, cooked just right at medium, and you could really taste that truffles all over. Very satisfying. The fries were ordinary, but they probably seemed even less so since the burger was such a masterpiece. With a burger that good, it was impossible to be disappointed by some fries.
Although they said that it takes time to make the milkshakes, which I’m sure it did, the staff essentially brought out the milkshakes at the same time as our entrees, rather than bring them out later as dessert. Now, this seemed a touch problematic, since whilst we enjoyed these perfect burgers, our milkshakes seemed to melt and drip before our very own eyes. We found ourselves chasing our burgers with milkshake, almost to clean the palate, and then comically returning to our burgers. Perhaps this was intentional by Black Tap, but it nevertheless did make eating everything in a timely manner more challenging.
However, let’s not forget the very fact that the milkshakes look nothing short of astounding. Sugar upon sugar, with cookies and candy and pretzels, frosty coatings, and two black straws stuck right through. Beautiful. Taking a picture of such art is almost a requirement, as one could see by observing neighbors in awe by their own dessert monstrosities.
As far as taste, it tastes the way it looks. It’s sugar, and a lot of it. I will say that it’s good, but in all honesty, the dessert is more for show than for flavor. The milkshake itself was not extraordinary, but the sheer beauty of such a milkshake convinced you that it may have been.
It’s funny that I initially believed that the milkshake would easily overpower the burger, but it appeared to be the contrary. The burger was spectacular, and the milkshakes were aesthetically magnificent, but flavor was average.
Overall, Black Tap proved to be restaurant worth visiting, and the atmosphere alone easily won me over. I would hands down come back for a Kobe truffle burger, and would even potentially order the dessert again just to appreciate how epic it looks. Glad to say I tapped that.