Saturday, January 24, 2009

Day 2 - Friday, January 23, 2009

Lunch - Gotham Bar & Grill - 12 East 12th Street/cross street 5th Avenue

Picked this restaurant because of the many positive recommendations from a couple of friends. Wonderful decor, draped fabric lamps, lemon walls, high ceilings and fresh flowers everywhere. Jeffrey our waiter was fun and engaging.

Braised Cauliflower Salad (golden raisins, capers, pine nuts and goat cheese, white verjus vinaigrette) - perfectly dressed and balanced mixture of flavors & textures

Mezze Rigatoni w/ Braised Duck (garlic butter & parmagiano reggiano tomato white wine broth) pasta al dente & duck ragu light but flavorful with herbal essence
Gotham Chocolate Cake (flourless dark chocolate cake with banana gelato) rich creamy velvety chocolate cake w/ gelato made with real apple bananas - great mixture - could not eat the whole serving

Food - 3.5 Great flavors, perfectly prepared, light & fresh tasting.
Service - 3.5 Jeffrey was very personable and funny
Ambiance - 4 Easy on the eyes, clean & crisp with architectural details

Rating - 3.75 (out of 5) I would love to try their dinner menu.

Snack - Vosages Boutique - Prince St/Soho
Hot Aztec Chocolate Drink - frothly hot milk w/ dark chocolate shaving, poblano & ancho chilies & cinnamon - perfect tempurature and balanced spiced flavors

Rating - 4 (out of 5)

Dinner - Mercer Kitchen - 99 Prince St/corner of Prince & Mercer/Soho

I could never get a reservation on my past visits to NYC and was so excited to finally eat here. Neighborhood/atmosphere - awesome exposed brick walls, basement feel, classy - but the food needs some attention. A real disappointment.

Pineapple, mozzarella & prosuitto, w/ basil, pomegranites & a light pineapple vinaigrette
Roasted Lemon Grilled Chicken Breast w/ smashed potatoes and haricot verts (tender moist chicken breasts, but no distinct memorable flavors
Almond Tart w/ vanilla ice cream - was okay, but not good

Food - 2 - I would not recommend it to anyone
Service - 3 - Fast, accommodating and timely
Ambiance - 4 - Very NYC, classy & raw, great feel

Rating - 3 (out of 5)

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