Trip report - Le Bernardin & Sleep no more
We enjoyed a great short break during Easter weekend. As usual I had planned out most of the meals and there never seem to be enough time to go to all the places I want to go to.
Day 1 Friday - lunch
We went to the Breslin. Got there around noon and was seated within 10 mins with our bags against a wall nearby. It wasn't very busy when we got there though by the time we left it was pretty much full.
We had the lamb burger and the day's special roast beef sandwich with a dip. Both were fabulous, meat tender and rich but within the limits of decency and the cumin flavored mayo (I think) with the lamb burger was great with both the burger and the triple fried chips. Nothing green graced our plate, but it was start of our holiday. Other food that we saw coming out of the kitchen including a salad looked a gargantuan proportion.
Le Bernardin experience was everything I would have expected. The food was great - we went with the Chef's tasting menu. The highlight was the tuna starter and the dessert. TT and I are not dessert people but this was by far the best dessert we had ever had. The waiter though told us that he finds it too rich!
The wine pairing was perfect mostly though I wasn't too keen on the quince sweet wine. Service was perfect, making us feel pampered without being overbearing or snobby. Overall a great experience.
Day 2 Saturday - brunch
We went to the National for brunch. Somewhat humorless service but our beef hash and huevos rancheros were flavorful and filling. I found it quite hard to find a good place for breakfast in midtown / Murray Hill area we were staying in (other than the Breslin) so any advice for the future would be welcome!
We went to Sleep No More for the dinner experience. At 55 dollars per head I wasn't expecting much, but it was actually much better than what I thought it would be.
If you don't want details of the dinner please don't read any more....
We went in about 10 mins past 6, where we were directed to the bar and got a couple of glasses of red wine. TT went to talk to the pianist but apparently he wasn't supposed to be there, contrary to the rest of the performance after dinner. Everyone is seated at large tables all joined together. There are two starters, two main and a dessert, and they are all served family style. Hurry though and eat because they serve quickly and take away the plates quickly too as they are trying to finish dinner before performance. The first starter - cold salad - was great but while we were being polite it was whisked away by the waiter to everyone's shame. All the courses were very well done, and wine was topped throughout the meal. During the meal there are some random things happened, and at dessert a performance.
After dinner we were whisked away in random groups into separate tables with a bottle of port and glasses - so most likely you'll get separated from the rest of your group which is what they want you to do anyway. It felts like a long time to wait to enter the performance as you get taken down the elevator in groups of 8.
I enjoyed Sleep No More quite a lot. It was a little crowded and I missed out some of the cast (Hecate for example which I was a bit miffed about) but I liked the elaborate and large set and the ability to explore. TT however hated the mask and the dark so bailed after an hour or so.
Day 3 - Easter Sunday brunch
We ended up in Artisanal, which was quite a pleasant experience. We ordered the cheese and ham plate with jamon iberico added - which I have to say didn't look like it was cut properly (with the fat greased over the ham, mmmm.) The cheese selection was however fabulous and we didn't really have room for our next course of octopus and pumpkin gnocchi. I found them a little salty but it might be because I was also quite stuffed. If you are a chocoholic, should also try the French hot chocolate which was thick and wonderful.
Above was my eating trip to Manhattan. So few days and so many restaurants...