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Má Pèche - Family Style Meals on W. 56th and 5th, Midtown West - Chef Jorge Olarte in the Chambers Hotel - Closed Jun 13, 2018


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Just a brief lunch at Má Pèche, so no major conclusions to draw.  It's essentially a big, white, shoebox sunk into the midtown topsoil, cement walls softened by white canvas hanging like massive Elsworth Kelly works on three sides with a bar on the fourth.  Cool music -- some old, some new -- hip servers in t-shirts and stubble, wooden tables.  Very minimalist.

I just had two dishes.  The raw striped bass with soy, angelica, seaweed was strangely compelling, as though the angelica-spiked soy sauce favored the impeccable fish with some umami-laden sorcery. More minimalism, but with an aftertaste of extraordinary half-life.

The Nieman Ranch hangar steak with rice and egg was pretty OK.  I sent the first version back when it turned grey and the second stayed appropriately pink.  By this time, the waiter -- who was initially gruff and maybe hungover, as it was a Monday lunch shift -- had warmed up and acted as my carnivorous advocate in this matter, in addition to pointing out some decent red by the glass in a proper Queens accent.

For dessert, I grabbed tasty a slice of Candy Bar Pie -- toffee, nougat, a chocolate cookie crust and mini-pretzels -- at the Milk Bar in the hotel lobby.

Hardly enough to make judgments, but it I had a bunch of rowdy friends who appreciated good food and Modest Mouse, I might be tempted to head back to the basement, knock back a few bottles and work my way back and forth through the menu.  It might be a pretty good time.

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On 7/7/2015 at 11:35 AM, Genevieve said:

Has anyone been here lately, or been for dinner?

It's been almost a year, but I had dinner there with my toddler (on the early side), and quite enjoyed it.  We were staying in the hotel in which it's located, and they were perfectly happy hosting us for an early dinner...really, no one batted an eye, which impressed me.

It's a bit too long ago for me to remember specifics, other than my kid liked the look of the caviar cart and demanded we order some.  (It was good.)  We also ordered some dry-aged meatballs that were a special featured by one of the cooks that night.  Apparently each night, one special is featured after having been presented to and voted on by the rest of the kitchen staff...at least it was like that then.  I do remember being very pleased with everything we ate, and with the fact that we shared the dining room with Marisa Tomei, with whom my son shamelessly flirted with for most of dinner.

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Has anyone been here lately, or been for dinner?

I was there about a month ago, and am late in replying to this - apologies. We really, really enjoyed the habanero fried chicken and the lobster and sticky rice (from the dim sum cart). The atmosphere isn't much - as the restaurant is basically a subterranean box, painted white. Can get loud in there as well.

Betony is also close by, and is a good spot for a meal at the bar.

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