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At the risk of sounding totally lazy, I have been eating around NYC for a few months without a post, but the thought of separating these into additional threads seemed daunting, so I am more or less d

So no surprise, dining at Le Bernardin was both weird and wonderful. The restaurant has invested a huge amount of money in sanitization equipment and the staff uniformly wore masks and gloves (we wore

Posted Images

Some pix from this weekend:

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and while we're on the subject of "comfort food":

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Flaczki -- tripe soup

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Cheese blintzes

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Clockwise from top: blueberry blintzes, sweet cabbage (not really sweet, but to differentiate it from sauerkraut), kielbasa

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Little Poland
200 Second Avenue (East 12th Street)
East Village

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At the risk of sounding totally lazy, I have been eating around NYC for a few months without a post, but the thought of separating these into additional threads seemed daunting, so I am more or less dumping the lot here "“ my apologies.

Peasant (Soho): Probably best in winter "“ very rustic room and wood-fired cuisine. Absolutely incredible octopus appetizer "“ roasted with piquillo peppers. I've stopped in multiple times just for this and a glass of wine at the bar. The room can be loud, but there is a small, well chosen wine list and excellent roast leg of lamb with polenta to make up for it.

American Cut (Tribeca): This place is the most garishly B&T styled restaurant I have been to in a while. No surprise that the second location of this spot is (or was) in Atlantic City. Décor aside, the service is excellent, and the somewhat typical steakhouse fare is better than what you'll find at other financial district or tribeca steak spots, save Dylan Prime. Our server was pleasant and knowledgeable, and brought out a complimentary side of sweet corn when our group was torn between a few different sides to order.

Estancia 460 "“ formerly Sosa Borella (Tribeca): Basic Argentian/ Italian bistro fare. Decent option if you are either in the neighborhood or need delivery. Serviceable chicken Milanese and grilled calamari, but nothing you can't find at any one of 1000 similar establishments in NY.

Artisanal (Murray Hill): Artisanal continues to be a rock-solid bistro. Good food, fair prices, nearly always busy. Not my favorite bistro in NYC (Orsay on the UES is), but if you need a place close-ish to Grand Central (or close-ish to Penn Station for that matter), Artisanal will more than fit the bill. My six year old is a particular fan of the mussels.

Carbone (Soho): Best meal I have had in 2014. Carbone somehow manages to transport you to a 60s-70s NJ Italian-American supper club without having to sacrifice food quality or head to NJ (thank God). Everything I had was a hit, from the complimentary charcuterie to begin, and followed by an excellent and very refined penne ala vodka and scallops francaise. I was stuffed so skipped dessert, but went back a week or so later and had the bass oreganata, which was fantastic. My client ordered the porterhouse "“ our server graciously offered to prepare the filet as a tartare "“ hadn't seen this offered before and the tartare was excellent. All in all a very fun spot "“ the wait staff really has their shtick down pat, and while the restaurant is elegant, I wouldn't call it formal. Can be a tough reservation, but well worth it.

Tocqueville (Union Square): Perhaps the polar opposite of Carbone "“ totally serene dining room, restaurant utterly devoid of hype and still doing an excellent job a couple decades in. I'd describe the restaurant as modern American fine dining, similar in style to the late Chanterelle. I don't know why this style of dining seems so out of fashion these days "“ my meal was exemplary "“ nothing groundbreaking but excellent nonetheless. I started with grilled octopus with some baby potatoes, arugula, and smoked vinaigrette. Lots of grilled octopus available in the city now, but this was an excellent version, as the arugula and vinaigrette playing pretty well with the Octopus, which liberally seasoned with paprika. I followed that up with the seared scallop and foie gras, which seems to be the house speciality. There was a sort of cider vinegar sauce that did an excellent job of cutting through the richness of the foie and the sweetness of the scallops. Very nice wine list, and several excellent by the glass choices. This was a great escape as a solo diner after a hectic day "“ I will be back when in need of some more serenity.

Sant Ambroeus (Soho): The second NYC branch of a long-tenured restaurant in Italy. Fun and lively bar scence, and great people watching, or chatting (ended up sitting next Tim and Nina Zagat "“ nice folks). Veal Milanese was good, as expected. I think that the restaurant may suffer a bit from its proximity to Osteria Morini, which does similar food at a higher level, at least in my opinion.

Bobby Van's "“ Broad Street: Across from the stock exchange, this is a decent place for a quick client lunch if you are downtown "“ you can also eat in the old bank vault downstairs if that's your thing. Good veal chop, excellent creamed spinach "“ overpriced wine list "“ the usual steakhouse. Not worth the trip. Honestly, Reserve Cut is across the street in the Setai and is better (and Glatt Kosher).

Lure New York (Soho): A very neat space "“ set up like the inside of a boat, which does an excellent job masking the restaurant's subterranean location. I had the crispy calamari "“ which was a well-fried and greaseless heap of tentacles and rings with a smoked chili glaze. The chili glaze was vastly more interesting than the usual calamari accompaniment, and I would gladly order it again. My main was a grilled whole Dourade, whose flavor was punched up a bit by agrodolce, and marred by some undercooked baby carrots. Carrots aside, this was a pleasant meal, with some decent (if expensive) wines by the glass. Well worth a trip if you are in Soho.

Marc Forgione (Tribeca): I went to Forgione with some trepidation, fearing similar décor to American Cut. I was pleasantly surprised to see a much more rustic, homey restaurant. I enjoyed the chili lobster on texas toast as an appetizer "“ I am told this is a signature appetizer of sorts. The chili didn't overpower the lobster, but aside from that I wasn't wowed by the dish. I am a sucker for Dover Sole (and would love a good rendition in DC "“ haven't  had a great one since the jockey club was filleting them tableside in, oh 2008 or so), so I was very happy with Forgione's version, which was a bit different than the traditional preparation as it was sauced with a lobster mousse, kaffir lime, and truffle. While the mousse and kaffir lime were excellent, I thought that the truffle (which was an oil) could have easily overpowered the dish were it not used so judiciously. There were also a few brussel sprouts on the plate, which struck me as a bit odd as a garnish, but no matter. The wine list is fairly varied and not horribly priced "“ all in all Forgione was excellent and a reminder not to pre-judge places based on the chef or his or her other restaurants.

Union Square Café (Union Square): I love everything about USC. Wonderful food, excellent wine list, and superior service in a comfortable setting. I'll be so disappointed when they move out and this location becomes a Benneton or whatever "“ they are certainly firing on all cylinders now. Michael Scaffidi is the wine director for Union Sq Hospitality group now "“ if you remember him from Plume, you'll notice that the selection of Maderias has gone up a notch at USC, and all of the staff is well educated on the wine list. This was my birthday dinner and things got a bit hazy, but I can say that the experience was more than the sum of its parts.

Morandi (East Village): The lone Italian restaurant in Keith McNally's empire, Morandi still packs them in. Similar in food and mission to Sant Ambroeus and Osteria Morini.

Grey Lady (Bowery): Hipster seafood restaurant. Large, open room "“ great beer selection. Menu highlighted wood grilled lobster so I gave it a shot "“ bad idea, as it was severely undercooked. Sending it back led to an interesting conversation with the table next to me, which was full of Mainers (I am a summer resident, but am "from away"). We had a great time chatting, checking out the interesting beer list, and toasting a recent real estate transaction that deepens our Maine roots. Second time around the lobster was quite good "“ although I'd stick to the shellfish platters and happy hour next time, and maybe try to grow some facial hair so I fit in better.

Maloney and Porcelli (Midtown East): Some of my clients are very restaurant savvy, and some are more, well, basic, when it comes to food. Guess which type of client had us out at Maloney and Porcelli? This restaurant is a part of the Smith and Wollensky Restaurant Group, and it's menu has a pretty large overlap with S&W. Fun trivia: there used to be a Maloney & Porcelli in DC "“ can anyone guess where it was? This is a serviceable steakhouse on most levels, but it does have a $70 special which includes unlimited wine. You start off with a prosecco, then have a choice of a chardonnay (some cakebread related label, I believe) or a white Bordeaux. For reds there is a village Bordeaux and the Decoy series of wines from Duckhorn. This $70 gets you anything off the menu in addition to the wine, save lobster. I had a scallop starter and a ribeye, which were both fine. Not the best I have had in the city, but not the worst, and with the wine included, passes for a deal here in NY. (The DC Maloney and Porcelli was in the Fiola location. So Maloney & Porcelli > Le Paradou > Fiola)

Le Perigord (Sutton Place): One of the famous Le/ La restaurants that used to dominate fine dining in NY in my grandparent's day "“ still hanging on, along with La Grenouille. Formal service, with waiters in tuxedos, and a menu preserved in time. I was probably the youngest person eating there by a couple decades, and ended up sitting next to IM Pei, who was likely the oldest by a decade or so. Anyway, there is an excellent wine list if you are into older French wines at somewhat gentle mark-ups. I had the lobster bisque, which was excellent "“ a lighter cream based soup, if that makes any sense, and the dover sole. The sole was prepared about as classically as one could wish for, with the fish filleted and deboned tableside, and the sauce done tableside as well. The fish/ sauce were the stars here "“ it was accompanied by some rather indifferently cooked vegetables and mashed potatoes.  Dessert was served from a large pastry trolley that makes laps around the room "“ I had a lemon tart, but was free to choose anything else in addition to the tart "“ which I thought was a nice touch. The owners of Le Perigord own the building, which likely explains why the restaurant is still open, along with a loyal (if aging) crowd. I went in search of a time-warp in terms of well-prepared old school food, and got that for the most part. I'll be back.

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At the risk of sounding totally lazy, I have been eating around NYC for a few months without a post, but the thought of separating these into additional threads seemed daunting, so I am more or less dumping the lot here "“ my apologies.

Consider yourself forgiven, you lazy trencher!  :lol:

You probably spent over an hour working on that post, and that's something that has not gone overlooked by me (for whatever it's worth).

And I can promise you it will still be here in forty years when you show it to your grandchildren.

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Was in New York last weekend and have some updates to prior posts. Got in on Friday in time for dinner despite a crushing Amtrak delay and headed to

Carbone (181 Thompson St): Carbone remains as good as it was years ago, despite even more press and a Michelin star. Appetizer Standouts included tuna crudo and octopus pizzaiolo. Our group then split a couple orders of pasta - Rigatoni alla Vodka and Lobster Ravioli. Both were excellent - no lack of spice in the vodka sauce often seen in the overly sweet pizza shop versions. Mains included the Veal Parm - pretty much the platonic ideal of a veal parm - and the porterhouse. Porterhouse was served with the filet as tartare and the strip black and blue - fantastic. Some blips with the service as we sat for a while prior to our drink order being taken and after that things seemed a bit rushed overall. I attribute some of this to the Michelin and other general hype that MFG has gotten over the years.

Charlie Bird (6th Ave and King Street): Brunch at Charlie Bird was great, and pretty low key for what can be a tremendously crowded and loud restaurant during lunch hours. Starters were housemade burrata with chile and charred broccoli along with roast octopus/ mint/ ceci bean/ pea/ nduja. The burrata was excellent, but really what burrata isn't? The roast octopus was good, however my favorite octopus dish in NYC is at Peasant. Mains were crispy chicken and cacio e pepe. Both were very good. Combined with some rose it was a very pleasant brunch with an incredible soundtrack. I prefer Charlie Bird at dinner, but brunch was significantly less crowded and very reasonable.

The Grill (Seagram Building): I spent a lot of time in the Seagram building growing up, and ate at the old Four Seasons a slew of times. The guys from MFG have taken over the space and have brought out a menu of old school chophouse classics. The room is mostly the same, and judging from the crowds the place is already a hit. Our group shared a number of appetizers, with one taking advantage of the cold appetizer buffet, which he enjoyed. You could pick from oysters, charcuterie, salmon and other crudite. Kind of an interesting touch for a restaurant with pretty clear aims with respect to stars (Michelin and otherwise), but I bet it makes service much, much easier. Other apps included scallops in snail butter (fantastic), blue crab gumbo and a mushroom omelette prepared tableside. Tableside preparations are central to the restaurant, with one app, two entrees and several desserts all prepared at the table - reinforces the old-school vibe. In fact, since the Jockey Room reboot in 2008 I'm not sure of a place in DC that does much tableside prep anymore, and the same is true of NY. For mains we had the dover sole mueniere (tableside), the prime rib (carved tableside), Guinea Hen Claiborne and the Larded Squab. All were excellent, with the guniea hen and dover sole being my favorites of the bunch. Still crowded on a summer Saturday, the Grill is already coming into its own, and is well-worth a trip back to the old Four Seasons. No room for dessert, but enjoyed several wines and some cocktails. The cocktails were well-made and interesting selections following the mid-century theme. The wine list is extensive.

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A few limited-time things:

- Tonight is Chef Sono's last night at Kyo Ya. *sadface*

- 5-7 April, Cedric Grolet will be at Dominique Ansel (original Soho store). "Dominique Ansel invites Cédric Grolet to New York" More details from their IG

- Paul Liebrandt (of Corton fame) is the latest chef-in-residence at Chefs Club NYC. His most recent gig was a similar popup/residency at Racines wine bar.

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Last weekend  we visited NY.

Craft-I posted in Craft's thread

Boqueria 260 W40th.  In my hotel this was very convenient and I am a faan of this chain.  Always a great meal, prices are reasonable and quality good.  Not fine dining but fun dining.

Union Square Cafe-Ate Brunch here Sunday. Excellent.  Composed plates ranging from eggs to lunch dishes.. I had Chick Milanese which was an excellent cutlet served with a great salad.  And I ate too many homemade potato chips, my Kryptonite.  This place was rocking on all cylinders but it is large and multi level so that it was also quiet enough for use to have a great conversation with relatives we see yearly.

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25,000 Yelp reviews confirm what I suspect most people on this forum already knew. In Manhattan, street restaurants are, on average,  "better" than avenue ones.
One thing that puzzled me, with so many fewer avenue restaurants, (1,500 v. 18,000) they appear to be racking up reviews at many times the rate of the street restaurants, or am I missing something? Even allowing that the avenues are busier.....
Full disclosure, I have never used Yelp, to find or rate. 
 
 
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25 minutes ago, Count Bobulescu said:
25,000 Yelp reviews confirm what I suspect most people on this forum already knew. In Manhattan, street restaurants are, on average,  "better" than avenue ones.
One thing that puzzled me, with so many fewer avenue restaurants, (1,500 v. 18,000) they appear to be racking up reviews at many times the rate of the street restaurants, or am I missing something? Even allowing that the avenues are busier.....
Full disclosure, I have never used Yelp, to find or rate. 
 
 

That article left me cold and unconvinced.  Additionally the difference between those two averaged ratings seems insignificant to me, if not to the statisticians.  OTOH, while in NY City a couple of weekends ago we ate at a street restaurant and an avenue restaurant (not that the characterization would ever have struck me as being significant).  The "street restaurant" was far better than the "avenue restaurant".  I'd rate the difference as being significant.

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6 hours ago, DaveO said:

That article left me cold and unconvinced.  Additionally the difference between those two averaged ratings seems insignificant to me, if not to the statisticians.  OTOH, while in NY City a couple of weekends ago we ate at a street restaurant and an avenue restaurant (not that the characterization would ever have struck me as being significant).  The "street restaurant" was far better than the "avenue restaurant".  I'd rate the difference as being significant.

I too take it cum grano salis.
One possible explanation for the review number discrepancy might be that the avenues have more (or a higher percentage) of corporate (if not chain) outlets, that have a bigger footprint, and more walk in foot traffic, that results in many more daily covers. 
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45 minutes ago, Count Bobulescu said:
I too take it cum grano salis.
One possible explanation for the review number discrepancy might be that the avenues have more (or a higher percentage) of corporate (if not chain) outlets, that have a bigger footprint, and more walk in foot traffic, that results in many more daily covers. 

I suspect the above is completely on target for the review # discrepancy.  The Avenue restaurant at which we dined was large w/window lines on an avenue and street and beaucoup seats w/ lots of bar seating.  The street restaurant was mid block and dramatically smaller.

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Went to a Brooklyn place last night that will go nameless.  Nice corner with outdoor seating on both sides.  Tables spaced apart, waitstaff friendly and wearing masks.  Good food menu & a nice selection of wines by the glass, with good pours & prices from $11-15.   Large retactable glass doors open with a good jazz band (Miles Davis/Coltrane type stuff) playing inside for the diners outside.  A Spanish chef who they said worked in some very nice places & who uses good ingredients with tasty results.  So, we’re drinking wine (they even had a decent Txakoli that I liked) and the waitress takes our food order.  The menu has “small plates”, “large plates” & “sides”.  We decide on a tuna tartare from the small plates & fried eggplant sticks from the sides to start, then short ribs w/polenta & a scallops dish from the large category.  After taking our order the waitress says that it’s “sort of a tapas place” and the chef puts out dishes as they’re ready.  Okay, we sort of chuckle, saying “if possible the smalls before the bigs, not all together”.  “Can’t promise that” was the response.  Okay.  We’ve survived this before.  

Well, every one of the 4 dishes was excellent but (& you think you know what’s coming, huh?)....  Nope, not all together.  First comes a single large plate of the short ribs.  Huh?  We shared it and, just as we finished it, out come the scallops.  Really?  As we finished it, laughing, here comes the eggplant sticks and, yep, the tuna tartare last.  As I said, all was really well prepared and tasty, but WTF!!  Although this was exactly where we’d like to spend some time reasonably often, as it was delightful in all other ways, we’ll never go back.  I mean, what can we possibly say to them that they shouldn’t already know?  Its a strange new world we live in.

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Headed to Le Bernardin for (re) opening night on Wednesday. Will be interesting to see what’s changed.

Pleased to see that outdoor dining is set to become permanent - maybe DeBlasio isn’t out to completely destroy NYC and it’s restaurant culture.

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On 9/26/2020 at 5:48 PM, Keithstg said:

Headed to Le Bernardin for (re) opening night on Wednesday. Will be interesting to see what’s changed.

Pleased to see that outdoor dining is set to become permanent - maybe DeBlasio isn’t out to completely destroy NYC and it’s restaurant culture.

So no surprise, dining at Le Bernardin was both weird and wonderful. The restaurant has invested a huge amount of money in sanitization equipment and the staff uniformly wore masks and gloves (we wore masks while not eating/ drinking), and whenever a server approached our table. There are some pictures and stories floating around from "re" opening night, but I didn't take any. All in all, the food was phenomenal and the wines fantastic - further cementing Le Bernardin as my favorite of the NYT 4*. Nothing remotely like it in DC, for sure.

We had the chef's tasting - Menu below:

Layers of Thinly Pounded Yellowfin Tuna; Foie Gras, Toasted Baguette, Chives, Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Warm Sea Trout "Sashimi"; Osetra Caviar, Light Marinière Sauce

Seared Yellowtail Hamachi; Pickled Cucumber-Mango Salad, Lemon-Tandoori Olive Oil

Grilled Lobster "Mi-Cuit"; Charred Scallions, Sea Urchin Sauce Américaine

Sautéed Dover Sole; Almonds, Chanterelles, Soy-Lime Emulsion

Poached Halibut; Artichoke Medley, Black Truffle Butter

"The Egg"

Milk Chocolate Pot de Crème, Caramel Foam, Maple Syrup, Grain of Salt

Tropical Fruit "Pavlova," Coconut Sorbet, Lemongrass-Kefir Lime Sauce

 

Standout dishes were the Dover Sole, hamachi, and lobster, though everything was very good, albeit reminiscent of past menus.

All in all, a great trip. That said, quick reminder for anyone voting in the coming month. Regardless of party affiliation, PLEASE vote for the person you feel has the work ethic and stick-to-itiveness that is best for your municipality/ state/ nation. DeBlasio has managed to unite an entire city in opposition to him, regardless of party lines through laziness, incompetence, and indifference to businesses large and small, as well as first responders. He will leave the city in dire straits. If your travels take you through NYC you may eat or drink safely (such as safe is now) and be served by dedicated professionals who want to work and pursue their craft – but are leaving (as so many others) at a breakneck pace.

 
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