2007_05_foodGoGo.jpgWe arrived at the Japan Day festivities in Central Park last Sunday afternoon only to find that the food had run out. Nevertheless, we enjoyed an excellent jazz combo, but soon it started to rain. In order to salvage the day, and keep with the Japanese theme, Gothamist headed downtown to give Go!Go! Curry a try.

One of the reasons we waited so long to pay Go!Go! Curry a visit was that it was host to Gromesque lines last month. The garment district eatery is the first U.S. location of a Japanese chain whose name honors Yankees' outfielder Hideki Matsui. Go means five in Japanese, hence the tribute to number 55. Go!Go! Curry is likely to make baseball fans out of Japanese food enthusiasts and vice-versa, thanks to a promotion that offers free toppings the day after Matsui whacks one out of the park. A flat-screen TV plays a compelling loop of Go!Go! Curry promos, ranging from cheerful restaurant workers doing their thing to J-Pop punctuated by shouts of "Go!Go!," to more serene images of rice harvesting.

2007_05_foodGoGoMatsui.jpgThe baseball theme extends to the menu, with portion sizes named walk, single, double and triple. Then there's the calorific grand slam curry, a monster platter that comes with fried chicken, pork sausages and a hard-boiled egg, among other things. Not a bad deal for $12.50. Japanese curry is quite different from the South Asian variety. The thick, sweet sauce has a tiny kick of heat and is served over rice with such toppings as slices of tonkatsu, fried pork cutlet. Curry rice is classic Japanese comfort food, a fact born out by the number of Japanese who joined us in the dining room last week, as well as last month's lines.

2007_05_foodGoGoPlate.jpgIf you're so inclined, you can order your Go!Go! Curry rice without any toppings. It's certainly the cheapest way to go, a walk sans toppings is a mere $5. No doubt the dark, pork-enriched sauce probably makes a nice snack poured over rice. Gothamist went for something a bit more substantial: a walk portion of fried chicken and a single portion of fried pork. As we alternated between bites of crispy pork and chicken bathed in the rich, homey curry, all we could think was: "Go Matsui!"

Go!Go! Curry. 273 West 38 Street, 212-730-5555