Eatin’ in New York 4

November 28, 2013 at 9:59 PM Leave a comment

Never a problem, Jeff found himself in New York again and guess what, he tried a bunch of new places, each one better than the next.

The Gramercy Tavern has been around since 1994, but we have never eaten here. They serve a contemporary American cuisine in two distinct dining rooms. Jeff was looking for a late lunch/early dinner, so he jumped into the more casual “tavern” side and fully enjoyed the experience. The roasted sweetbread was served with pears, kohlrabi and walnuts. The delightful gland was perfectly prepared and brought a smile to Jeff’s face. Even though Michele was not present, Jeff thought the Monkfish sounded interesting, blended with cauliflower, raisins and curry. It was and he is glad he dipped into the fish side of the menu, usually dominated by Michele. Dessert was Lemon Icebox with curd and hazelnut crumbs. So good, he considered stopping by for dinner in the much more formal Dining Room. He didn’t, but with food this well prepared, it is on the list for the next trip!

This time, Jeff stayed at a hotel substantially farther East than normal, so he decided to try a new “late night” dinner option. Il Postino is located between 1st and 2nd Avenue and convenient to the Lexington Avenue hotels clustered nearby. The real star was the fava bean salad with pecorino. The fava were nutty and flavorful, punctuated by the snappy pecorino. This may be Jeff’s favorite salad in a long time. The veal ravioli with wild mushroom sauce was equally good, as was the vanilla bean crème Brule, but he still remembers the salad!

Jeff has tried to get into ABC Kitchen on a number of trips. Reservations are always booked solid. He tried again this time and while they indicated that no reservation were available, a few seats were left “unreserved” for walk-ins. As he was expecting to take a VERY late lunch, Jeff took a chance and was seated in a virtually empty restaurant. Full indeed! Regardless, the meal was scrumptious and inventive. He started with the roasted carrot and avocado salad. Accented with a collection of middle-eastern spices and extra crunchy (too crunchy?) croutons this was a perfect and unique start. Jeff chose the handmade Bowtie granola pasta with a rich meat sauce and veal meatballs. Both the pasta and sauce were different, creative and extremely flavorful. How often does a grape dessert appear on menus? We have been eating out for MANY years and can’t remember once, so of course Jeff had to try the grape tart and it was flawless. The center was a creamy mousse consistency, the crust was flaky, the top was sprinkled with large grain brown sugar and a collection of frozen concord grapes. This was simply perfect.

ABC Kitchen is located in the ABC Home building in a previously abandoned lower level corner. If you’ve never been to ABC, overeat with no regret and then work it off with a stroll around the six stories of eclectic home furnishings and “must-have, but don’t need” tchotchkes. This is a place that must be seen.

Because of Jeff’s work schedule, late lunches worked best for most of the trip. The last day was no different. Tertulia is a Spanish place that serves primarily tapas, but the menu was wide and intriguing. Because it was a brisk day, the daily lentil soup special sounded perfect and it was. With a bit of chorizo and some “heat” it warmed Jeff up quickly. The Huevo Diablo were deviled eggs also with a touch of “heat” and some pickled shallots. It was gone in an instant! The Nuestras Patatas were perfectly roasted spice-topped potatoes with pimentos and the Jamon Croquetas featured cubes of Iberico ham (yum!) tucked inside the croquet. This was a pretty good place on a blustery cold day walking the city.

Jeff met his niece for the only “dinner” of the trip. After a number of failed options due to last minute planning, they decided on Annisa in Greenwich Village. Walking to the restaurant, Jeff thought the area was familiar and then passed One, if by Land, Two, if by Sea, a classic New York restaurant is a historic building. We dined there a number of years ago, prior to a theater engagement. After a single meal at Annisa, it would not be a stretch to assume classic status, in the very near future, just like its neighbor.

Jeff started with the Soup Dumpling. Topped with foie gras, this was a real treat. The staff reminded patrons how to eat classic Chinese dumplings with a bite off the end to sip out the flavorful broth inside and then noodle and seared foie gras are gobbled up in a flash. Excellent. Jeff’s niece enjoyed the Steak Tartare formed into a rectangle with bulgar wheat and cinnamon. Followed by rich Lobster and Sea Urchin she fully enjoyed her “Surf-n-Turf.” Jeff’s entrée was a stuffed, rolled rabbit loin and it was very good and beautifully tender. Meyer’s Lemon Curd dessert and Pecan & Salted Butterscotch Beignets finished a perfect meal, perfectly. Food doesn’t get much better than this.

Around ever corner, New York has a great little eatery. Some are famous and have stood the test of time. Some will last a few months and vanish, to be replaced with another Chef’s dream. As long as we continue to travel to this vibrantly city, we’ll continue to sample these interesting culinary visions. 42 East 20th Street New York, NY 10003 212-477-0777 337 East 49th Street New York, NY 10017 212-688-0033 35 East 18th Street New York, NY 10003 212-475-5829 359 6th Avenue New York, NY 10014 646-559-9909 Barrow Street New York, NY 10014 212-741-6699

Entry filed under: Eatin' Out of Town. Tags: , , , , , .

Eatin’ in the Heartland El Arepazo y Pupuseria

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