FEB 14,2011 - MAR 08,2011 (23 DAYS)
French lunch in NY
After 3 weeks in Manhattan I finally found out that I hadn't been to any French restaurant yet. I'm still not sure how I let this catastrophe happen, but on my last day in NY I was determined to fix it.
I had 2 hours to spend at -5 °Celsius before lunch time. The choice was easy, I went to Dean and Deluka at my neighborhood to buy some interesting ingredients as sauces, chutneys, spices, etc…
When lunch time finally arrived, I went to Jean Georges, hungry and yet again with no reservation. The restaurant was full but I was lucky to find a seat by the bar with an empty chair next to me (for my lovely new camera).
At Jean Georges a lunch prix fixe of 28$ is offered, including a choice of appetizer, entrée and dessert. I ordered a nice American Pino Noir (15$) and waited for my appetizer - Tuna Tartar avocado with spicy radish on top of it.
The bar tender had poured the ginger marinade onto my plate, just in front of me. What a great vision. The Tuna tartar was fabulous, and all flavors were just precise, which seems to be difficult to achieve when ginger is one of your players.
As for my entrée, I ordered grilled striploin of beef, broccoli, chili and garlic, another great dish with wonderful meat.
At this phase of the meal, 2 guys sitting next to me just got their appetizers, they were very excited about it and told me that they were also going to take pictures of their meal although their camera is not as sophisticated as mine. I allowed them to take the pictures…
As for my desert, I asked the bar tender in advance what he recommends me to take. He said that if I hadn’t been there before I should definitely take the Jean-Georges' warm chocolate cake with vanilla bean ice cream. In this case there was no huge surprise, it was as good as just warm liquid chocolate cake can be – splendid!
5 hours later I was on my way to the airport, still smiling…
Restaurant web site: http://www.jean-georges.com/
About a Great Italian lunch in Manhattan
After having eaten so much street food I decided that I should visit a place where I could feel at home, comfortable and where I could understand the language - an Italian restaurant.
I spent the morning in many art galleries in Chelsea and just when the art started to seem too bizarre I decided to stop for a lunch at Del Posto, an Italian restaurant nearby, that I heard about from a friend at work. I hadn't made any reservation but it was late enough and they managed to arrange a table for me although the restaurant was crowded.
I must admit that although I can enjoy the great food on the streets, I just love the manners in fancy restaurants. I really like it when my coat is taken from me. I like seeing the waiters treating the food so seriously and with such respect. I like it when they clean the bread crumbs from my table between the different dishes. And in this specific restaurant I was also enjoying the piano music which was being played there…
Del Posto offers a Prix-Fix lunch (29$) that includes three course with a choice of Antipasto, Primo OR Secondo, and Dolce. I got myself a glass of PINOT NERO Abbazia di Novacella 2009 (14$) and was ready to start my lunch.
Lunch had begun with a beautiful plate arriving to my table and on top of it 3 appetizers were laid down. An excellent Stracciatella (soup with chicken broth, eggs and parmesan cheese), that had this unique blend of traditional chicken soup flavor with a touch of parmesan. A Saffron rice ball (crunchy ball made of risotto covered with gold dust) which was mainly beautiful to look at, however it just tasted good, nothing extraordinary. And the last appetizer -Mortadella in Pastella (meat-filled mousse), with a great texture that just melted in my mouth.
I also got a basket with 4 different types of bread including Focaccia and Olive Bread, accompanied with butter and whipped lardo, of which I had to try each and every one, as expected they were all very good.
For antipasto I ordered Roasted Winter VEGETABLES with Robiola Sformato & Truffled Hazelnuts. The plate looked like a painting and it was one of the finest art exhibits that I saw that morning. There was a wide range of different grilled vegetables on the plates, as cauliflower, carrot, zucchini, pears, beet and so many others. The plate was beautiful but also extremely delicious.
Since I was in an Italian restaurant I really wanted to try one of the pasta dishes, but the waiter highly recommended on the lamb, therefore I was convinced to take it and thanked him later for his good advice. The slow baked LAMB alla Puttanesca & Garlic Tatsoi was simply fabulous, the lamb was soft and delightful, the garlic tatsoi was a bit spicy but excellent as well. Although the dish was a success I couldn't finish it.
But I was more than ready for all my deserts, I ordered Butterscotch SEMIFREDDO Melon Agrumata, Crumbled Sbrisolona & Milk Jam, a perfect combination of sweet and sour flavors.
In addition to this I also was presented a beautiful cheese box filled with surprises, on top of the box there were: Dark Chocolate Olive Oil Gelato with Toasted Breadcrumbs and Warm Bomboloni with Lemon-Vanilla Cream. Inside the box there were Champagne Vinegar Caramel (the wrap itself was eatable, it was made of rice), Dried Cherries and a dark chocolate truffle.
That was one of my best meals in NY and it worth every dollar I paid.
Restaurant web site: http://www.delposto.com/home.htm