Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
Dec 14, 1998 11:21 AM

Mercer Kitchen

  • m

Five of us are going to Mercer Kitchen tomorrow night.
Two are very interested in wine, particularly big reds
at fair prices. We're not looking for bargains so much
as very good value for the money spent. Love champagne
and other sparklers as well. All of us love to eat and
three will try almost anything listed on any menu(the
fifth is a friend's mom visting from Kentucky-she's a
great cook and an adventurous eater). Anyone who's
been there have suggestions? Some of our party went on
one of the preview nights (not me), but I hear the
menu's changed since then.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I was there for the first time on Sat. I wasn't really
    blown away. I had the red snapper from the oven. The
    desset I had was outrageous---panne cotte with
    pineapple sorbet and grilled pineapple---fabulous. But
    sorry, I'm not in a big hurry to go back. Hope
    YOU have a good time. (There was no toilet paper in
    one of the stalls in the ladies room!)

    1 Reply
    1. re: corndog

      blows away that place across the street that begins
      with a z. tuna pizza is amazing. well done...

    2. sorry to break the news to you, but JG's latest
      downtown attempt just isn't up the the uptown
      standards. While the room is exceptionally
      comfortable (considering that is is in a basement) and
      the service is typically unobtrusive, the food does
      not stand out. Wines are a decent value when you
      consider the surroundings, but the meals just feel as
      though they were half-thought out. I had a skate dish
      that tasted a bit off (too vinegary) and a lobster app
      that was rather bland. My partner had the tuna pizza
      (the highlight of the evening) which has a riccota-
      wasabi base and sashimi slices of tuna accented by
      whole fresh shiso leaves. It was different but
      acceptable. The entree of short ribs and hanger steak
      was cooked to the correct temperature, but the sauce
      had absolutely nothing going for it.
      I must say that I was personally disappointed as I
      have been previously employed by Jean Georges @JoJo.
      and I have always enjoyed my meals, without exception
      at his other locales. Maybe the kitchen is still
      finding its groove, because I felt the rest of the
      dining experience was pleasant.
      I would not go back unless I was assured the food had
      been reworked, although the space is so exciting,
      maybe just ordering from the raw bar (always many
      choices)and having cocktails is the way to go.

      1 Reply
      1. re: seth

        Seth, I read your message after I'd been to Mercer
        Kitchen but your comments pretty much reflect my
        experience. We were disappointed in the wine list,
        thought it was a little blah and plopped for the house
        champagne (Nicolas Feuillate Brut) which we thought
        represented the best value (the pinot noir and cabernet
        prices were high). We liked appetizers and desserts
        better than the main courses (my very tender and
        delicious venison was absolutely drowned in a highly
        salty and overly intense red wine reduction), with the
        tuna tartare a particular high point. It was
        imaginatively spiced and beautifully presented in a
        hollowed Meyer lemon. And one could actually taste the
        Meyer lemon juice in the tartare. But generally I, as
        a great fan of Jean-Georges' other ventures , was a bit
        disappointed. I would like to go back for drinks- it
        has a lively atmosphere and the interior is attractive-
        and perhaps try that pizza you touted. But I wouldn't
        go tearing back for dinner at $90 a head.