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May 25, 2008 06:39 AM

Half Moon - Mini Review

I went to Half Moon twice in the past week with friends, and am pleased to report that I loved this restaurant.... The service, while still green, is friendly, and helpful. They have a number of servers from Harvest that are helping to open the restaurant.

This restaurant is going to be THE place to try to get into all summer..... The dining room is beautiful, the menu is terrific, and the outdoor dining options are great when they are ready to open outdoor seating. I think there are about 25 large tables outside on the deck they havent opened until the kitchen is ready to handle the volume.

The food and presentations were great. I dont think there was anything we didnt like...

I have two words: CLAM BAKE
I have two other words: SEAFOOD BRUSCHETTA

Clam Bake First... This was phenomenal. We got the large clam bake ($105) and 4 people in our party shared it for our entrees. Loaded with half lobsters, steamed clams, mussels, corn on the cob, roast baby potatoes, crispy shishito peppers, sausage, fried spicy chicken wings on top (unexpected, but tasty). all in delicious broth to dip thick hearty bread in... We couldnt finish everything, but we came close. EXCELLENT. I didnt understand why all the table cloths were covered with brown butcher paper, but after seeing the mess on the table after we devoured all this, we understood.

Seafood Bruschetta... This was delicious also... I wouldn't order this on the same day as the clam bake, because there were similarities, but it was delicious. Large platter of steamed clams mussels, shrimp, and scallops, in a delicious broth, with huge hunks of grilled bread that was to die for..... This was a great appetizer for a group of people to share.

Other highlights:

Spicy tuna on Wontons... loved it. We got this both nights
Duck tacos. 3 great tasting tacos, with salsa and guacamole
Pork Buns These are like little slider burgers made with a small sliced loin of pork instead of a burger. tasty. and only $2.50 each
Caesar Salad: GREAT a chipolte flavored dressing made this spicy and special
Ceviche Sampler Phenomenal. There were three varieties: scallops, shrimp (tomatillo sauce i think) and halibut. All were great and tasted super fresh
Fried Ipswich Clams: OMG Incredible. crispy outside, and explosion of flavor when you bite into the belly....(or whatever you call it)

Mixed La Plancha: This was good and tasty. Thinly sliced (1/2" or so) meat (lamb chop, pork, veal) that maybe needed a little more flavor or spice. but it was good.

Herbed Seared Tuna: This was LOVED by the person who ordered it. I didnt taste it but it looked beautiful, small slices of seared tuna that looked perfectly cooked.


The "Ice cream sandwich" was big enough for 4 to share...... layers of cripsy filo, fruit, ice cream

Strawberry Short Cake with Fresh whipped cream. The short bread was really really good. It was light and delicious. I strongly recommend this.

Cheesecake. very good

Gelato Rich and good

Im not a professional reviewer and dont have a lot of experiences writing reviews, but my overall impression of Half Moon was extremely favorable.

In their first week, i expected there to be kitchen issues that i didnt encounter. The food came out as ordered, entrees were served together, everything was delicious, and absolutely NO complaints. Service needs a bit more training and consistency, but we didnt expect the service to be flawless in week one. Everyone had a good attitude, and that is the most important thing for us.

We didn't have an opportunity to sit at the bar, but it was really nice and long. and looks comfortable and would be a great place to eat... When i go out with just my wife, we love to eat at the bar.

We will definitely be back often!.

PS: Did i mention the INCREDIBLE river views? From the right tables, you can look one way and see the George Washington Bridge, and look the other way, and see the Tappan Zee....

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  1. This place sounds great, where is it?

    2 Replies
    1. re: chefstu

      It's where the old Chart House used to be in Dobbs Ferry. Liz Johnson had photographs and the menu on her blog recently and the renovation look great. I'm looking forward to going once they get past the opening stage.

      Half Moon, 1 High St., Dobbs Ferry. 914-693-4130.

      <a href=';&gt;A Man Has to Eat</a>

      1. re: chefstu

        It's where the old Chart House used to be in Dobbs Ferry. Liz Johnson had photographs and the menu on her blog recently and the renovation look great. I'm looking forward to going once they get past the opening stage.

        Half Moon, 1 High St., Dobbs Ferry. 914-693-4130.


      2. If you plan eating outside on the weekend at Half Moon, please be aware that there is no waiting list for tables as there is at Harvest on Hudson. It is every man for himself. One intrepid bartender, Nick, is all that stands between you and thirst and starvation. He does what he can but he's only human. Management should be offering their clientele a much more pleasant experience. I expected better.

        2 Replies
        1. re: 5678

          So it seems that the place does NOT take reservations, is that correct?

          1. re: menton1

            They take them for indoor seating.

        2. We went there Friday night-we went early(around 6:30 since we went with our 2 year old). The wait was only about 10 minutes for an outside table and our food came pretty quickly. The menu is a lot like Harvest in Montauk. The view is great but a bit dangerous with young kids-very little to protect them from falling in the water! Food is ok-some items we tried were definitely better than others. Duck tacos and lobster roll were our favorites.
          The problem I had most was around 8pm it started to get extremely crowded. I expect it would be at least an hour wait then. I don;t think they could handle it. We ordered desert at 8 pm and I did not get my check until almost 9pm. Our waiter was a little too laid back and I think he forgot about us. Also getting my car from the valet was a total nightmare! It was so disorgazined, they could not find peoples cars/keys. I had to wait about 15 minutes for my car and I was one of the luckiers ones!

          So to sum it up I would go back because its really nice outside dining but would skip desert and get out by 8

          4 Replies
          1. re: mfenimore

            Haven't heard much about this place on the board recently...has anyone been lately? We were thinking about trying this place out this weekend? Read on another site where the reviewers spoke highly, but once again, those reviews were quite dated. Just curious if anyone has been here recently and what their experience was like...?

            1. re: RawTunaFan

              Had a nice dinner at Half Moon tonight. Ipswich Clams and Pork Chops. Nice salads, including Caesar and Calamari salad. They do take reservations for outdoors, and there is a full menu at the northern outdoor area. (This is contrary to previous posts).

              A nice experience, all in all. Has somewhat of a chain restaurant feel, but a bit better. Food was nicely presented and prepared, and best of all was the view, since the weather was clear, low humidity, and in the high 70s. Sit right on the Hudson. Good value. About half the price of Harvest in Hastings (same owners) but just as good IMHO.

              Good Jazz/Island band on the other outdoor area (drinks and appetizers only) with benches to listen while you digest your dinner as you egress.

              1. re: RawTunaFan

                I went recently to celebrate my sister's graduation and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves! We had absolutely no complaints about the food (unlike the first time we tried it soon after it had opened) and especially enjoyed the desserts. Especially now that the weather is getting nicer, I'd give it a shot!

                1. re: i_eat_a_lot_of_ice_cream

                  How exciting....the duck tacos are one of our favorite things at ENE (East Northeast) in Montauk (same owners as this and Harvest). Can't wait to try.........hope they have other ENE faves like the creme brulee sampler...............mmmmmm

            2. My family of 5 ate in the main restaurant last night. This was our first visit. The view did not disappoint but is best appreciated dinning outside.
              The staff were friendly, attentive and numerous. The crowd was a nice mix. A scene of sorts but welcoming to young and old alike.
              So far, so good. The only disappointment was unfortunately the food. The veal Milanese was soggy. The lobster roll was bland and more pink sauce than lobster. The scallops were chewy rather than a
              "al dente" and the goat cheese salad was little more than a bed of arugula.
              My daughter's mac and cheese was excellent.
              The chocolate pudding we shared for dessert was bland.
              In summary: We will go back, sit outside and order a cocktail and eat a burger of a summer day or evening but will definitely not return for a "fine dinning" experience.
              Food 4/10. Atmosphere 8/10. View 10/10. Staff 8/10.