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Michael Jordan's-anyone been there?

  • m
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We're going to Michael Jordan's tomorrow night for my
dad's birthday. I know Ruth Reichl gave it two stars,
but I'm looking for reactions, comments,etc. from any
chowhounds who may have tried it. Thanks.

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  1. Order a big, big pot of mashed potatoes. They're GREAT!

    In fact, I'd been meaning to post this to y'all...if you're waiting for a train at Grand Central and the Oyster Bar's closed, Michael Jordan's bar has decent over-priced wine-by-the-glass and beer (Sierra Nevada Pale Ale's best, if I recall correctly). But I recently discovered that you can order sides of mashed potatoes at the bar, and it's an awesome snack that makes your $7 (or something like that) beer go down a whole lot better...though it also skyrockets your bill a lot further.

    In fact, it's worth taking MetroNorth just for the spuds.

    ciao

    5 Replies
    1. re: Jim Leff
      j
      Jennifer Stott

      I've been there once, and am taking an out-of-towner again next Saturday evening. I haven't tried the mashed potatoes (will now), but the french fries are outstanding. The menu is pretty much as you'd expect at a steakhouse, and the portions are huge (for a small gal such as myself). I ordered the smallest filet mignon on the menu, and it was delicious. The shrimp cocktail for starters was just fine. I can't remember dessert. And the location is just magnificent in the restored Grand Central Station. Have fun, and let us know what you think!

      1. re: Jennifer Stott

        i've been there once for lunch. what i like best is
        the room. you'd expect posters of MJ all over the
        place along with his jersey and some autographed
        basketballs but instead what you get is a classy,
        stately room with nice comfy chairs and dark wood
        paneling. And of course you're up above the chaos of
        grand central and have a great view of the new ceiling
        and the wide open space of the station. as for the
        food, i liked the garlic bread and i got a buffalo
        sirloin, which i believe was a special that day. it
        was very good, well cooked, not too salty (can anyone
        say sparks?) and a good size. hope you and your family
        enjoy it.

        1. re: wonki
          c
          chris b.shaw

          Wow! It is simply incredible.Makes me wonder if I went
          to the same restaurant. Starting right from the time I
          made reservations,I found the whole experience a very
          LARGE BUMMER.They required a credit card to reserve the
          table for 6 people,and then when we get there with my
          wife's customers in tow,we are told that we don't have
          a reservation.After finally standing my ground we were
          seated.The meal was another experience all together,our
          cocky waiter,you know the "one" takes our drink orders
          and of course memorizes the order. He went a perfect 6
          for 6 when returning with our drinks. Wrong drinks and
          wrong diners.The meal was down hill from there on.I
          ordered a rare filet,which came out medium well.If we
          weren't with customers it would have gone back.I don't
          know perhaps they don't like people from Joisey.I'll
          give it another go and have some mashed taters.

          1. re: chris b.shaw
            m
            Martha Gehan

            Thanks everyone for all your comments and
            suggestions-we had a good time at Michael Jordan's and
            most of the food was excellent. Jim is absolutely
            right about the mashed potatoes-they're fabulous-creamy
            but not heavy ,with the slightly earthy taste of good
            fresh potatoes. I'd have to try them again but they
            may just supercede Blue Ribbon's spuds as my fave. All
            meat was excellent-sweetly gamy yet delicate rare
            roasted lamb loin(a special) w/yummy sides of broccoli
            rabe and barley with pesto, porterhouse for two,
            intensely beefy and cooked to order, and braised short
            ribs, incredibly tender. Everyone else loved the
            creamed spinach- I thought the sauce was a little
            floury-tasting. The fried onions were AWFUL- leaden
            and so greasy that visible pools of oil had collected
            on the ones at the bottom of the enormous platter.
            Shrimp cocktail was quite good and I liked the crisp
            little cubes of cucumber in the "23" cocktail
            sauce-nice textural contrast. The one teeny bite I had
            of chocolate mud cake (I'd sort of hit the wall by
            then-the portions are QUITE generous) had a nice fudgy
            texture but the flavor didn't blow me away. But my
            sister, a total chocholic, adored it. She scarfed down
            half of it and took the rest home. We also had a
            tasty Chianti, 1994 Badia a Coltibuono, but steep I
            thought (as was the wine list in general) at $58. The
            food, while not cheap, is not exorbitant considering
            how large portions are.
            The location is of course unbeatable and a perfect
            place to take out-of-towners if you'd like them to get
            some decent food along with their dose of atmosphere.
            You get a chance to appreciate at leisure just how
            transformational Grand Central's restoration has been
            and how intelligently the designers have fitted the
            restaurant into this Beaux-Arts confection. The period
            photos of trains are a particularly apt decoration, and
            everything is understated and comfortable. I do wonder
            how they're going to cool the place when it gets
            warmer.
            I though the service was pretty good and
            definitely appreciated the attention they paid to my
            dad, who while he can walk with a cane is disabled and
            has trouble getting around. Everyone-the woman at the
            desk, the maitre d' and the waiter, the bathroom
            attendant-were solicitous without being intrusive which
            is unfortunately not as common as it should be. Patria
            and Union Square Cafe stand out as places that have
            been sensitive and attentive, but the all-time winner
            has to be the very good Galileo in Washington, D.C. My
            dad wanted to order a duck special he liked the sound
            of but worried how he would eat it since one of his
            arms is paralyzed. "If I can carve it for
            Senator Dole,"said the captain,"I can carve it for
            you."

            1. re: Martha Gehan

              have to comment on the Galileo reference....it was a
              lovely gesture and the food is great and the chef
              Roberto Donato gets out of the kitchen and solicits
              feedback...HOWEVER....the waits for tables regardless
              of your reservation are horrendous.
              Sorry...I know this was supposed to be about Michael's
              place.

    2. j
      Josh Mittleman

      An update on Michael Jordan's. We went there Saturday evening with a group of 10 friends to celebrate my birthday. The experience was mixed: The party was great, the food ranged from very good to mediocre, and the service sucked green rocks.

      Appetizers were excellent: good Caesar salad, smoked salmon plate, lobster salad. My wife & I split a porterhouse as our entree. The meat itself was excellent, but it was badly cooked. Their grill was too hot, so that the middle was undercooked while the edges were badly overdone. Under any other circumstances, I would have sent it back. I heard similar complaints from a couple other people at the table.

      Their wine list is extensive. The top-level wines are reasonably prices (e.g $95 for a '95 Amarone di Valpolicella, which was simply superb), but the low-end bottles were ridiculously expensive. Not that it mattered: We couldn't get a second bottle of wine. We ordered one, but it didn't come to the table until we'd finished dinner. So we ordered a dessert wine, which didn't arrive until we'd already started our coffee.

      There were a number of other incidents of slow and inattentive service. Anent the ongoing debate on tipping: I refused to pay the 18% tip they added to the bill. We cut it in half and complained to the manager, who was very polite about it (but did not, for example, offer to comp the wine).

      Aside from the view over Grand Central Station and the convenience of being able to get there from Westchester County without driving, I see nothing to recommend this restaurant.

      But it was a great party.