After Bruni savaged poor Bobby Flay yesterday at Mesa Grill, I had lunch at Bar Americain again. the artisanal ham tasting was good but the portions microscopic. Much better ham selection and value at Momofuku. The hanger steak was great though.
Why "poor" Bobby Flay? It's been ages since we've been to Mesa Grill -- one excellent dinner, one so-so brunch -- and while I don't care much about Bruni's opinions, there have been plenty of reports, including on this board, that the food has gone downhill. Seems to me that while he's been busy expanding (Las Vegas, Atlantic City, etc.) and being a big t.v. star, he's ignored his flagship restaurant.
As for his other NYC restaurants, we had a couple of very good meals at the now closed Bolo, but our one meal at Bar Americain was just plain awful.
Had dinner at Bar Americain last night for the first time and we thought it was great. Had the seafood cocktail to start, which consisted of crab with coconut and mango, lobster with watercress and avocado and shrimp wtih a cilantro/horseradish cocktail sauce. All were very good and refreshing. For mains, we had the butterfish with sour orange glaze and brussels with hazelnuts and pomegrantes - the highlight though was the lamb porterhouse with a spice rub served with a cabernet reduction, and on the side, pearl couscous and roasted vegetables. The lamb was delicious! Tender and flavorful - and the roasted vegetables in the couscous were really earthy and complemented the lamb very well. A very enjoyable meal. We thought the portions were medium sized - left feeling full but not overly stuffed.