Chef Amanda Cohen Discusses Her Newest Restaurant in Newark Airport

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Amanda Cohen opened Thyme, a vegetarian restaurant inside Newark Airport, at the end of 2016

Cohen is best-known for her vegetable-centric Dirt Candy on the Lower East Side.

Chef Amanda Cohen — the “veggie queen,” and chef and owner of Dirt Candy in New York City’s Lower East Side — just opened up a brand-new venture inside Newark Liberty International Airport. Thyme is a vegetarian eatery (of course) and is part of a movement to bring talented chefs like Alex Guarnaschelli and Dale Talde to Newark, New Jersey, to transform traditionally boring airport food.

“There will be lots of salads, sandwiches, and main courses based around vegetables,” Cohen told The Daily Meal. “Everyone, not just vegetarians, will be happy eating there. When you have a meal at an airport, you don’t necessarily wont something heavy. This food is luxurious and light but filling.”

Expect dishes like (Cohen’s favorite) mushroom tacos made with a variety of mushrooms and Mexican toppings with bold flavors, as well as Purple Yam Fried “Rice” with kimchi and sunchoke ratatouille. There is also an extensive cocktail menu.

Thyme is also retrofitted with iPads, allowing customers to pull up the menu, order food, and even order magazines that can be delivered to their table while they wait for a flight.

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“We don’t want to create usual airport restaurants,” said Eric Brinker, vice president of experience at OTG Management, the company behind Newark Airport’s culinary reinvention. “A lot of people use the airport use the excuse of not being able to have fresh food or full menus. We want to operate great restaurants that happen to be in airports.”