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On one plate ...


Sixth and Main has long been an epicenter of post-adolescent hormonal rage, intermingled with alleged adults who furtively scramble after dismissive youth that flitter by wearing little more than their regrettable tattoos. But an antidote to this Clockwork Orange bacchanalia exists through the doors of Pair. Concrete floors, Persian rugs, Arne Jacobsen-styled chairs, Emeco stools and floor-to-ceiling windows create an environment suitable for a Soho loft.

I repeatedly invited my dear friend and neighbor the neurosurgeon to join me, but he was always busy. His wife confided that he was afraid I'd make fun of him. As it turns out, the neurosurgeon had previously dined at Pair, and offered that, "the food was real good." It's a shame we won't have the further benefit of his brilliance for this review.

Like the neurosurgeon, Pair thinks it can do anything. Unlike the neurosurgeon, Pair succeeds. They serve breakfast, weekend brunch, lunch and dinner. Late night, the scene shifts to their full bar and the feel is much more like a lounge. The atmosphere is what I would characterize as the over-27 veneered crowd-people lunging at any opportunity to smile, exhibiting their expensive, too-perfect teeth before you like a creature from Alien. It can also be fun to simply pull up a barstool and observe the decay of American society unfold outside.

Their BLTA sandwich, to which I am addicted, includes crunchy B, fresh T, crisp L, and avocado, delicately stacked between perfectly toasted eight-grain whole wheat bread so astonishingly good, I bet it would even calm that pesky tremor my neighbor always complains about. Normally I also have their house salad, which is a jumble of mixed greens bombed with sun dried cranberries, toasted walnuts and Gorgonzola, and finished with big Dijon balsamic vinaigrette. If that doesn't appeal to your inner junior leaguer with time for a two-hour lunch, then Pair has nine other salads to choose from. Hit Pair for a great weekend brunch that shrugs off the evening before like a one-night stand.

Pair is marvelous, and it deserves to be as busy as my remarkably skilled and dedicated neurosurgeon neighbor ... actually, Pair is so good it deserves to be as busy as his malpractice attorney.

-Waj Nasser suffers from surgeon envy.