251 West 50th Street
New York City

Toloache Restaurant

One of the smartest, most eloquent, and fun people we've ever run across here at Times Square has been CHRIS GILMAN -- for his years as Palm West's GM and now, as one of the partners of the just oh-so fabulous TOLOACHE (toh-lo-AH-tchay) on 50th street (two-story, 104-seats) ... ironically enough, diagonally across from his old haunt. While we won't and can't get into specifics on why Gilman left his old spot last year (as there are still some outstanding issues pending), let's say that he left there as one of the most important resources in the restaurant business. To have his Rolodex and celebrity contacts, certain folks out there would literally kill for! We've been lucky enough to share with him many, many fantastic nights at the old spot with the likes of PATTI LaBELLE, JOYCE RANDOLPH, MICKY DOLENZ, DEBORAH GIBSON, CINDY ADAMS, ROBERT FUNARO, DAVID SALIDOR, GILBERT GOTTFRIED, MAX WEINBERG, STEVE SCHIRRIPA, STEVE WALTER, KEITH GIRARD, MARK BEGO, and, many, many more. We've hung with the best of Broadway there as well and at many charitable events like Gilman's fantastic 'Celebrity Server', where the likes of LESLIE CROCKER SNYDER, RANDY JONES, and BILL McCUDDY, served as celebrity waiters. He has a unique knack for knowing what works ... and, what he knows works very well indeed. Partnered with owner/chef JULIAN MEDINA, at Toloache, they have prepared literally the finest Mexican delights we've ever had. Medina immediately dazzled us with his originality and his knowledge of each-and-every- dish. Hailing from Mexico City, he began his career at Hacienda de los Morales and he earned his culinary stripes ay NYC's French Culinary Institute where he received the 'Best Final Project' award. He is also a veteran of Sushi Samba, in both New York and Miami. He also worked at Zocalo ... one of the city's timeless Mexican eateries. He is, without a doubt, a force of nature. Deceptively clever and rather low key ... he lets his work speak for him ... and, it speaks volumes.One of the most innovative and freshest talents we've ever seen.We started with the Ceasar Toloache which immediately rated as one of the best ever dishes like that we've had; then moved onto to the Trio de Empanadas (spinach; chipotle shrimp; and, beef picadillo, all steeped in a fiesty salsa verde sauce). We then moved on to the Enchiladas de Pollo dipped in a series of fabulous cheeses and the always wonderful Chile Relleno. The food was just fantastic ... the full bar downstairs features a variety of tequilas that looked ever so fascinating ... but, we'll save that for another time.Do yourself a favor and check this spot out. Their sister spot at 23 Avenue A in Lower Manhattan is open and packed each and every night ... just ask SUE SIMMONS or CINDY ADAMS. And Chris ... welcome back ... you're were missed! BTW: Cinco de Mayo is this Tuesday, May 5 ... come down and celebrate!