1

10yrresident's Profile

Title Last Reply

Jean Georges or Chanterelle for a Special B-day Dinner?

I have said it before, and I'll say it again--it never ceases to amaze me how people can have such wildly different experiences at the same restaurant. I was at Chanterelle on Sept 29 and we had an absolutely perfect experience. The service was flawless. Everything was timed perfectly, and the food was phenomenal. I, too, had the duck entree (in a "smoky tea jus,") and loved it. My app was an onion consomme with leek and fontina dumplings, and dessert was a fig and huckleberry tart. Eating these 3 dishes in a row was like...well, the phrase I used at the time was "autumn symphony." And yes, we have been to JG as well--but I liked this meal better.

Oct 13, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Esca

I just went to Esca tonight for the second time. It never ceases to amaze me how different people can have such utterly different experiences at the same restaurant. Especially when it comes to service, which can be judged a bit more objectively than food I think. For me personally, each time I went to Esca the service was absolutely perfect--informative, attentive, and genuinely friendly without being obsequious. I am stunned that people have had bad service there. As for the food--the first time I went, I had some sort of corn salad and a sea bass entree--can't remember the details, but both were good enough that I knew I wanted to go back. Tonight, we had the following:

3 crudos--pink snapper (my favorite), hamachi, and salmon. What I would say is that if you are in the mood for this type of preparation, you cannot do much better than this. Someone posted below about ultimately preferring sushi, and I would tend to agree--but this was a refreshing change of pace.

2 pastas: squid-ink spaghetti with cuttlefish in a spicy chili sauce (really rather spicy for my taste, but delicious nonetheless and perfectly prepared) and fettucine with a tuna bolognese sauce (pure comfort! yum.)

branzino for 2, baked in a crust of sea salt. This is what made me want to write about the meal, and not because I have fancy words to describe it. Simply because it was so flavorful and delicious that I hope others will try it! Simple flavors--salt, pepper, olive oil, the lime I squeezed over it--but just unbelievably amazing.

For $60 pp, I was delighted with this meal. My 2 companions were as well. But what can I say? To each their own...

May 27, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Welcome back Ruby et Violette!

Roze, thank you for this post. I moved a block away from this shop last July and was always intrigued by it--it seemed so out of place in my humble 'hood--but as it was under construction for so long, I had forgotten all about it and never would have thought to check it out if you hadn't mentioned it.

So: I went in today and was instantly put off. The woman at the counter was rather obsequious. She made it sound like I was about to check in at the St. Regis. (She did offer me free samples, which I foolishly declined--but more on that later). And then there were the PRICES--$2.50 for one cookie?!? That's not much bigger than a Chips Ahoy?? I get the deal about the imported chocolate, etc etc, but I could not help but be offended.

But, my sweet tooth being what it is, I figured what the hell and settled on 2 cookies. The first one I tried was called the Peach Cobbler. This was made using peach puree, white chocolate chips, and graham crackers.

Well, let me tell you--never in my life have I had such inner confusion while eating a cookie. While my intellect was firmly clinging to the belief that NO cookie in the world is worth $2.50, another part of my brain was slowly awakening to the fact that this was unlike any cookie I have ever tasted in all my years of baking, buying, and eating them. The texture was masterful--soft yet somehow crumbly, moist but not gooey. The combination of flavors was unexpected and amazing. I don't even normally like white chocolate. In sum, the cookie was both "comfort food" and a gourmet experience at the same time--a very difficult balance to achieve.

The second unbelievable cookie was called the Candy Bar. (I'll let you use your imagination on that one.)

In the end, the apartment we moved to last July didn't work out--so we will be moving out of this neighborhood in a few weeks. And Thank God for that--if we didn't, I now know that I would be going broke buying cookies every day at Ruby et Violette for myself, my friends, and my co-workers. Because they are simply the best cookies I have ever had.

May 16, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Da Andrea or Scarpetta?

I would not recommend Da Andrea.

May 14, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Resto? Prune? Thor?

I went to Thor when it first opened. Cool vibe, food wasn't great.

May 13, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Union Square Cafe - What a mixed bag! (long review)

I went there once many years ago and liked it--but for those you who have had a bad experience there, especially with the service: You really should consider complaining to the highest-level person there that you can possibly get in touch with, even if it is after the fact. Danny Meyer's whole marketing angle is "hospitality" (he wrote a whole book crowing about it, in fact), and I have a hunch that a firm but respectful complaint could yield the likes of a free meal or something. I am just speculating here--but if it were me, I would be on the phone to them in a hot second. You have nothing to lose..

May 11, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Israeli Restaurant & Falafel

I would heartily endorse Azuri Cafe--51st St between 9th and 10th Ave.

Apr 26, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Morandi???

I went there or dinner when it first opened, and we both loved our meal. If I remember correctly, I had some sort of chicken liver/crostini app and then pasta with sardines. When I went back the second time maybe 6 months later, though, I did not enjoy it as much. I had a different pasta dish (cannot remember what) that just didn't appeal to me. Both times, we had very good wine (again, cannot remember what). So I have not crossed it off my list, but I am a little wary of recommending it.

Apr 26, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Stanton Social

I would not describe it as comfortable. Each time I have been there, the whole upstairs area has been absolutely jammed. I would hold out for a res in the dining room--personally we have never had much trouble getting one...

Apr 26, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Recs for places around lower Central Park

I would do Rue 57. 57th Street at 6th Ave.

Apr 26, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

The Park Restaurant..need reviews or reccs please!

I am glad you are reconsidering the Park as the service there is dreadful and the food barely passable. (Have fond memories of a party held there before it had opened to the public, but thankfully no food was involved.) If you are looking for Italian in that immediate area at a smiliar price, I would go to either Vento or Bottino.

Apr 24, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

legit Italian - not crazy $

I would suggest Otto. 5th Ave at 8th Street. This is the "cheap" Mario Batali place. I am not crazy about the pizzas, but the pastas, vegetables, sides, etc. are very good.

Apr 22, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Col Legno closure

This was an old standby of mine as well (I favored the vegetable lasagna) but I cannot say I am surprised. The last time I went there was around 8:00 on a Friday or Saturday night, and it was almost empty. A shame...

Apr 05, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Madangsui -- Korean BBQ

This place is indeed a good addition to the area. I do not do the BBQ thing so much at Korean places anymore, so I had a beef mandoo soup and some marinated short ribs. The soup was excellent. The downside with the short ribs: too fatty. The upside: delicious flavor. I also agree that the banchan was a cut above! I would definitely go back when in the area.

Apr 05, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

East Side Brunch (50's-80's) - Alternatives to Sarabeth's?

Annie's is quite delicious...79th and 3rd.

Mar 25, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Romantic, dark, semiformal, French restaurant

I would recommend Le Refuge on the UES. I think it would be exactly what you are looking for. If they do not have a table for you, or if you really cannot do the UES, my second choice would be Jubilee in Midtown East. It is not quite as dark and romantic as Le Refuge but the food is just as good and the setting is still rather intimate.

Mar 24, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Best Cheese Shops?

I like Ideal Cheese on 1st Ave around 52nd st.

Mar 22, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Merkato 55 - long

Met Samuelsson once at Aquavit--truly a delightful person. Glad to hear the good reviews as I plan to go within the next month.

Mar 17, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

are H&H bagels still the best??

H & H definitely has my vote...

Mar 15, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Please Update Me on Curry Hill South Indian Options

I, too, went back to Chennai Garden early this week and had a great meal. Pongal--last went 2 years ago, totally mediocre.

Mar 13, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Sushi around Union Square

Yama is on 17th St. and Irving--tasty and a good value. However since I do not live in the area, I cannot verify if they deliver. I would definitely give it a try if they do...

Mar 12, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

French Culinary Institute

I had lunch at L'Ecole once and it was great. I cannot remember exactly what my first 2 courses were--I want to say it was some sort of salad and an omelette--but I'll never forget the dessert--a chocolate and coconut tart. I saw God after just one bite. (After 2 bites, I BECAME God.)

Mar 11, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

I need help Quick

For Italian, I would send them to Serafina, which is on 49th between 8th and Broadway. The menu has something for everyone. I would recommend their pastas over their pizzas. For a very slightly more old-school vibe, they could do Bricco--56th betw. 8th and 9th. Both are affordable with pleasant service. Can't help you in the steak department.

Mar 10, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Planning Visit to NYC - March. Need Rec's...Aureole worth a visit?

I was last at Aureole about a year ago and was not particularly impressed. I think that at this point it caters mainly to tourists and the expense account crowd. If you are going to spend that kind of money, I think you could do better.

Mar 10, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Good Mexican in NY

I would second the vote for Pampano...

Mar 06, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

E.6th street Indian food

Point taken...I mean pretty cheap on the grander spectrum...comparing it to Tamarind, Dawat, etc. I also mean that it is pretty cheap relative to the quality and freshness of the meats/seafood.

Mar 03, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Hungry on 57th and 10th Ave

I live right nearby, and I heart Boston Market. Don't be scared of it if you've never tried it.

Mar 02, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

E.6th street Indian food

I love Indian food and have eaten in just about every fancy and un-fancy Indian restaurant I have come across in NYC and London--and I can honestly tell you that Banjara is really really good, especially considering that it is pretty cheap. At this point my husband and I have tried almost everything on the menu and haven't had a bad meal yet--although some nights the Chicken Tikka Masala is better than others, I don't know why. There is nothing unusual about the assortment of dishes on offer--they're just really really good. And they definitely do not use the same spice packs as all the other places on 6th St, which are indeed mostly awful.

Mar 02, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

22nd and park ave south-lunch question

I would second Via Emilia and L'Express, and I would also add Kitchen 22. None are very expensive.

Feb 24, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan

Destination for my favorite Korean dishes?

First of all, hi to everyone out there--this is my first post. Anyway, I would recommend the Jap Chae at Bonjoo. This is by far my favorite Korean place in the city.

Feb 24, 2008
10yrresident in Manhattan