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Review: Spice Market

p
Palate Jul 25, 2007 01:21 PM

I wen to Spice Market last night with 3 other people for restaurant week. I should have paid attention to some of the bad reviews on CHowhound, but I didn't. The 4 of us ended up ordering off the real menu b/c the prices weren't too steep and we didn't want dessert. It ended up being 53$ a head, and we all had a cocktail, appetizer and main course. So the prices were better than I thought, and the restaurant itself was gorgeuos--very romantic. The service was mediocre, and the food was...good, but merely good. (the skate was, in fact, bad. overfried) The red curried duck I ordered as a main was prob the best, and it wasn't that amazing. Overall, my friends and I were disappointed by expereince. THe food was somewhat interesting, but not excellently prepared. You can find better for better prices in some "authentic" tiny hole. Honeslty, I din't find the fusion attempt very exciting anyhow. So I guess I can check that one off my list. I just wish I hadn't wasted a RW dinner on it. So be forewarned, if you were ever tempted to go in, just get a drink at the bar and soak up the lovely setting.

  1. j
    jeanki Jul 25, 2007 04:25 PM

    I'd say I had a very similar experience. Very hip and exotic decor, reasonably tasty but ultimately ordinary food. Is it worth the expense and hype? Not at all.

    1. a
      ajgnet Jul 25, 2007 04:57 PM

      You know the first time I went to Spice Market i was really hesitant. I'd read about the cold flaky service and lukewarm flavors. But, I decided to go with my friends to see what this Jean Georges place was about. Contrary to what I'd thought, I regret to say that I was somewhat ... impressed? I thought my food was very flavorful and for the most part, authentic. I know that sounds crazy. Is it worth the expense and hype? Probably not. But, I would certainly say that you can have an excellent meal here in chic decor with very attractive people. This restaurant, other than Stanton Social, may be one of the best combinations of "trendy" and high quality food in New York.

      4 Replies
      1. re: ajgnet
        j
        jsmitty Jul 25, 2007 06:10 PM

        you nailed it.. i am not a fan of blanket condemnation of trendy restaurants because of their social status. if the food is good it needs to be recognized as such. is spice market off the charts good? no. is it worth a visit. absolutely. the room aloneis beautiful and worth seeing. my suggestion would be for someone to go during brunch. it is very civilized for brunch.

        1. re: jsmitty
          u
          UWShound Jul 25, 2007 07:15 PM

          Agree with that. One other point in favor of Spice Market is that the casual small plates concept means that it doesn't have to be an expensive experience, even though each individual item is actually quite expensive. Sit outside, look out on 9th Av on a nice summer evening, have a couple of ginger margaritas and a few of the small plates -- hard to beat for the sheer enjoyment of NY.

          1. re: UWShound
            Angelina Jul 26, 2007 05:14 AM

            Love the ginger margarita's!! I also like the lobster rolls, but I find the staff to be sort of "snooty". From the hostess outside when she clearly looks to see my clothes and my handbag, that is really annoying. The wait staff always sems to be "auditioning for a role in an upcoming movie".

            Maybe its just me, but anytime I go there that is the one thing that bothers me, the service. My sister loves the place so we do go there quite often. Does anyone else feel this way about the staff?

            1. re: Angelina
              m
              mlt9 Jul 26, 2007 08:35 AM

              i loved spice market, even ate there the week it opened and had a wonderful experience, but have not eaten there recently. the original head chef is no longer there, so i'm guessing any decline in food and menu changes have been a result of that... i've wanted to go back and try it, but wasn't sure... i love teh decor and have always have had great service, even just down in the lounge, however, yes, at times have found hosts, etc. to be a bit snooty...

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