Dovetail: Perfection on the UWS
Went to Dovetail last evening and had a flawless dinner. From the amuse bouche (two varieties) to a remarkable salad (brussel sprout leaves, prosciutto, cheese, pear, cauliflower), a rich and flavorful clam chowder and a moist duck with pistachios and truffles--everything dazzled. Angel food cake with mixed fruits was angelic. At the end of the meal, we were served a plate of house-made petit-fours and were given two "do-it-yourself" hot chocolate mixes with rose marshmallows to take home. Terrific wine list. And the service was attentive and polished. With the exception of Jean-Georges, this is the best meal I've ever had on the UWS. Dovetail: Welcome to NYC.
i dunno...i had dinner here on friday night and enjoyed it but had some issues. firstly, the wine list is overpriced by a long shot. i had to settle on a barbara d'alba for $65 since every bottle below $45 was crap.
my food was good but nothing amazed me. in fact, the food sort of is less inventive than they want you to believe and dresses things up in cheese and butter to taste better...such as the gnocchi with 'foie gras butter' which basically is gnocchi with a decent veal ragu and lots of cheese. my duck entree was quite good though...just not too different than any other decent duck breast.
service was hot and cold. took awhile for them to check up with my wine order and ages to get our check but other than that, it was competent. i was seated right on time at 8:30 on a friday. my date and i were surprised at how we were the youngest in the room until 10:00.
for the money...$240 for a bottle of wine, 2 apps, 2 entrees, 1 dessert, i felt ive had more interesting meals at telepan.
Yes... I'd read a lot of Chowhounds' accounts of their hot-then-cold service, so I was kind of on the lookout for this last night. No problems for us at all on a Tuesday night at 9:30. Our waitress and the sommelier were both very gracious, food came promptly, we never once felt neglected.
Re: wine prices, I don't think it's marked up any more than it is at other restaurants of the same caliber. A sad-but-true fact of dining out in NYC. Cocktails, though expensive, are also made with excellent, fresh ingredients -- and they're *strong*. If the space weren't so tight, I'd consider going just for drinks and appetizers.
I ordered very different dishes than you, but I didn't find cheese and butter to be overwhelming or camouflaging. In fact, I didn't get much of either in any of the dishes my dining companion and I tried. (edit: there was cheese in the polenta, but i found the dish well-cheesed rather than over-cheesed. :)
There are a lot of interesting dishes on the menu that I'll becoming back to try. I like it much better than Telepan.
Liked it. Could grow to love it. It's definitely solid.
Amuse: vodka gelee, fried capers, American caviar and ... I think it was halibut sashimi?
Pork Belly porcini mushrooms, kale, hen egg
Frisée and Bitter Lettuce hazelnuts, butternut squash, golden raisins
Braised Striped Bass polenta, peanuts, lime, bacon
Rack and Leg of Lamb indian spices, winter tabouleh, yogurt
Brioche bread pudding
peanut butter granola to take home
The amuse were ok, not great. Fish was barely sashimi grade.
I loved elements of the crispy pork belly appetizer. The pork belly was absolutely lovely, as was the five spice(ish?) sauce, the porcini, kale and other ingredients. My sole complaint was that the poached egg was still cold on the inside. I like a runny yolk, but cold runny yolk is a different matter.
Frisee was solid--about as good as such a simple dish can get. Nicely dressed, not too much salad dressing.
I loved the lamb (perfectly tender, worked nicely with yogurt and tabouleh). I liked the sea bass. Great polenta, nice bacony sauce. The fish was a smidgen overcooked.
Chocolate fondant with frozen yogurt was good, though I'm not sure the sourness of the yogurt worked that well with the chocolate. Individually, each would have been lovey. In combination, it was just good.
The bread pudding really is that good. There's a thin layer of banana over top, and the brioche is perfectly integrated.
All in all a nice meal, though we had to wait 20 minutes past our reservation time for our table.
Service was perfect. And for the record, the white cheddar cornbread is a lovely choice for the bread plate. Its rustic, yet nuanced, flavors work perfectly with the homey style of the full flavored dishes.
Looks like we were there on the same night, cimui, and ordered pretty much the same things too. We were sitting downstairs and I thought everything about it was extraordinary... one of the few places in Manhattan that I would take the time and money to go to over and over. I loved it.
I went there last night and agree 100%. It is absolute perfection. Each dish is so intricate, with wonderful flavor combinations. You get a real sense of caring and attention to detail. The fried lamb tongue appetizer is amazing, and we loved the clam chowder, the duck, and the roast sirloin with beef cheek lasagna. Even the desserts combine numerous flavors and are beautifully presented. The banana bread pudding is the star, but the carrot cake and almond souffle tarte were also outstanding. The wine list is heavy on the high end, but there are also some very well-chosen selections for under $50. Especially considering the short time it has been open, I am extremely impressed.