Olana - great alternative to Danny Meyer-ville.
I've been a fan of the Danny Meyer restaurants for years, but two recent dinners at Union Square and Tabla were kind of lackluster. So last night, I met a friend at Olana on Madison & 28th and what a lovely place. The decor is elegant, yet comfortable. The menu is really appealing and the food is just superb. Had something called Monkfish Osso Buco which was delicious, great salad, fabulous dessert of date pudding. The service is low key, but expert. It's one of those places that is just right, if you know what I mean. Nice size, nice scale, owner on the premises. Wonderful addition to Madison Park area.
I was there last night as well and agree 100% w/your assessment. We stuck to the price fixed, but had an amazing butternut squash soup and the homemade pasta and sausage app, and the brook trout w/tiny scallops, artichokes and greens. The desserts were the best part, we shared the sticky date pudding as well (yummy!) and pear tart in pastry (also great). Then they gave us a mini chocolate fondue, fantastic. The service was profession and friendly (save our actual waiter who seemed to lose interest the moment my friend mentioned we'd be sticking to the $35 pf). We each had 2 different wines by the glass and they had a very generous pour each time. And the decor is gorgeous. I will definetey return for a special occasion.
We went to Olana for dinner last night and also had an excellent experience. Olana is a place to stop in for a drink and nosh or enjoy dinner. The menu has changed (not the same as on their website), they still have the prix fixe though our group opted to order ala carte. Most of us had the tagliatellini with seafood for our entree. Others had the tagliatelle with pork shoulder. For apps I had the octopus with blood orange and orzo - delicious. I also had the crespelle with mushrooms. Very good. One of our friends arrived late (we had finished our apps) and our server managed to get her entree out quickly and unobtrusively. We all had March birthdays and our chocolate sundae dessert came out on 3 plates with "Happy Birthday" written in chocolate, sliced into bite size pieces with candles on top. The owner was in the house and stopped by our table. A lovely evening. Can't wait to go back.