Chow report (LONG) - Baltimorian in Manhattan. How did I do?
- toro head Aug 8, 2006 09:13 PM
The wife and I took a trip up to NYC on the train last weekend. Praise or bash our selections accordingly.
Lunch Friday - Blue Smoke - 27th and Park. We were looking for something a little more 'ethnic', but we were starving and this place was right around the corner from our hotel. Excellent yellow gazpacho soup (prob the best I've ever had). Wife had the mac n' cheese which was good but sat like a rock in the stomach. I had the pulled pork sandwich. Meat was flavorful and smoky but a little fatty. I can get better down here. However, the pretzel type roll was awesome and made the sandwich.
Dinner Friday - Babbo - You know where it is. We did not have reservations but got seated at the bar within 10 minutes (9PM). I had the marinated sardine appetizer while the wife had the marinated bean salad. Both were very good, but the sardine portion was pretty small. Entrees included beef cheek ravioli and the pumpkin lune. Both pasta dishes were fantastic and a great sampling of Mario's talents. The bartender Ken couldn't have been nicer and was very paitent with us since we asked him like 15 questions about the menu. Wine recommendations were right on the money. We were thinking of the pasta tasting menu, but since we were at the bar we decide to skip. Definitely will do next time. No desert, we had people to meet.
Lunch Saturday - Serafina Fabulous Pizza - 79th and Madison - Nice space om 2nd floor. We shared a goat cheese salad and each had personal pizzas. Food was excellent and the pizzas were huge. Great sangria too! Bill was $75 (sting) with tip for one salad, 2 pizzas, 2 iced teas and 2 sangrias.
Dinner Saturday - Jewel Bako - 5th and 3rd - Strange atmosphere for a Japanese/Sushi place. My appetizer of Japanese mushroom in parchment paper sucked (tasted like warm average mushrooms) , but my wifes miso was supurb. Ordered a nice assortment of nigiri sushi and 2 rolls. The fish was exteremely fresh and the rice was cooked perfectly. Excellent, excellent sushi (but still not the best I've ever had). Server was very helpful with selections. There's didn't seem to be a lot of odd choices here, but rather 5 different typs of tuna and 5 different type of yellowtail etc. I'm sure there are some 'off the menu' type items if you ask. Desert was great and comped to us (maybe because we were the 2nd to last table still there). Sake suggestions were perfect. Bill was $240. OUCH! Will go to Yasuda next time, we just couldn't make it up there this late in the evening.
Lunch Sunday - Madris Mahal - 27th and Lexington - Vegetarian Indian place in Curry Hill that was within walking distance of our hotel. Shared the samosas first, and they were really flavorful with a hella hot sauce on the side. My wife had an eggplant dish and I had a vegetable curry spread with nan. It was pretty good, but nothing to write home about. Service was extremely slow, but they did have a birthday party in there at the time with about 15 people. We'll try another Indian place next time.
PS- Babbo was excellent, but I think I enjoyed Lupa from our previous visit a little more. Had free breakfast at the hotel both mornings, and Spamalot was freakin' funny as hell.
Good summing up. We appreciate the feedback--and we learn from others' experiences--visitors as well as locals. Thanks.
Former Baltimoron here ... you did well, and you're right to mourn the missed pasta tasting menu. But don't be afraid to skip a nice meal and go for some cheap eats next time. A burger, Chinatown, etc.
Thanks for the writeup. Sounds like you had a good time. Come back again for the aforementioned cheap eats!
not much worth discussing since i was unable to take any of you up on your suggestions. by time game was over saturday and we checked into hotel, it was getting late. and my son was blinded by the bright lights of harborplace. so we ended up at j pauls just for convenience and a kind hostess snuck us in at borderline bar table. i know i don't need to report on that meal.
sunday by the time we finished at the aquarium, we water taxied over to fells point, and based on late hour, just ended up at that brick oven pizza place right near the dock since we had to return quickly and get on the road.
i have to go back for business in next month or so - and will make 'hound amends while solo!