Esquire and Bon Appetit Magazines as one of the Best New Restaurants for 2011, Ruxbin has obviously gotten a lot of press, as might be expected, for a restaurant run by a chef that has formerly worked at Per Se. The place is pretty small, seating 32 people. The restaurant describes it's design as Steam Punk. With many recycled and repurposed materials spread around the room, I have to agree. There is a lot of copper around with many gears and a lot of wood and the general color scheme is sepia. The room has a high ceiling with what look like old newspapers overlapped like a newspaper collage. The room has three booths with overhead lighting that looks like an old school chair combined with a TV tube. The rest of the seating has tables in front of a bench with seats on the opposite side. The bench has a wooden seat and a back made of vertically laid leather straps. The lighting is overhead, consisting of a light bulb that is silvered on the bottom that lets very little light through. There is a curved copper reflector mounted above the light in order to light the table. Despite the fact that the bench was wood, it was a lot more comfortable than it sounded and it was where I was seated. I was served a bowl of popcorn shortly after I was seated. I am not a huge popcorn fan but I did try this. It had a lot of Butter with Salt, Sugar, Black Sesame, and Seaweed. It had a good flavor with all of the flavors shining through. The seaweed flavor came at the end and added a briny vegetal flavor to everything. While it did taste good and different, it had the typical popcorn texture which I am not exceptionally excited about. I did eat most of it though.
There is a great reason that there is still a lot of buzz about Ruxbin. It is a great restaurant with a very distinct look, friendly staff, and great food. I would be happy to return here and to introduce my friends to this place.