Business dinner - financial core, relatively quiet, expense account
- grandgourmand Apr 14, 2009 06:22 AM
Any suggestions? A list is all I need to pick from. Things that pop into my head right off the bat:
Far Niente (sucks)
That list is boring. Although if I had to pick, it'd be Bymark.
Cost not really an issue, but not going to Harbour 60 or Splendido either.
I second Vertical. Location is perfect, food is very good, service is friendly and professional, and it's possible to discuss business in this attractive and comfortable restaurant. The night I was there it was extremely early, so the restaurant was nearly empty. I'm not sure how noisy it might get when full, but no more so than anywhere else. Other suggestions might be Colborne Lane or Nota Bene, or, a little beyond the financial district is Starfish.
I know, it's hard to keep recycling through the same ones. But for your description of financial district, quiet, etc. I'd say Canoe as a first choice. No matter how many times I go for business (or for pleasure), I can at least be assured that there will be something interesting on the menu. And the service is usually tops. Close second would be Bymark, although I find it noisier than Canoe, but food & most times service is also very good. Hy's, eh, it's OK, more of an old-boys school still for me, so I rarely go unless I'm taken.
Far Niente? Don't get me started. Glorified Jack Astors. And not even a good one. Far Niente was good when it first did their reno a couple years back. Seemed like they were pulling themselves out of a years-long slumber. The place looked great, the servers were on their toes, and even the food was exciting again as it was when it first opened! And then.....they slid back down to the bottom. Yuck.
Although again Note Bene is a bit livlier than the rest, excellent food and service.
I don't think the list is that boring; I like Canoe and Bymark. Bymark tends to get noisy on the busier nights of the week, so it depends when you're planning on going. Canoe is more quiet. I've had good and bad experiences at Vertical, but ymmv.
Vertical - many lack luster experiences there, same with Far Niente - I would stay away from both. I would go with Bymark, Bardi's, Starfish or Colborne Lane.
If you want unctuous old-world service with very decent food and a great wine list, I would suggest Biagio. Not as current in terms of menu, but always well-executed in a room that's well set up for business dinners.
So I ended up going to Vertical. I'll do a quick review because I'm busy.
First of all, the dining room was empty. I wanted quiet, but this was a bit depressing.
I had the grilled sardine app, which was good. I don't normally order sardines, so not a huge frame of reference. But these weren't very plump. Tasty, just a bit scrawny. I have to say that the green grape, pine nut and mint salad that came with the fish was really good.
For main, I had the duck breast and duck leg. good dish, meat was tender and flavourful. but I really shouldn't have ordered it. Not a very good choice, considering my table mates all ordered grilled whole fish, which looked very good. Anyhow, my duck dish was good, nothing mind blowing. However, the potatoes served alongside the duck were blackened and way too overcooked.
For dessert, a caramel flan.
Service was good. Prices are reasonable, considering the location. It was stupid of me not to order a whole fish, because its seems to be a specialty of the restaurant. My dining companions enjoyed their meals.
Would I pick it over Canoe or Bymark? Probably not.