Perhaps opening weekend is not the best time to try a place out, but I couldn't resist the Opentable offering. Predictably enough, Saturday night's meal lasted close to three hours, but the friendly staff and comfortable room made it more than bearable.
I can't comment on all the wonderful-sounding cuts of beef on the menu linked below (via Eater on curbed.com); don't gots the cash! That said, the hangar steak had plenty of flavor and came perfectly medium-rare. A generous slab of beef short ribs was fork-tender, served in a cast-iron dish. The seafood tasting (only one type available that night) was three clams, three oysters, three large shrimp, a small dish of seaweed salad and half a lobster cooked in a seasoned boil for $54.
Our server was very gracious when I asked why the lobster bisque was $18; 4 ounces of hard-shell meat (different from that in the tasting) are in the bowl before the soup is poured in from an enormous pot. Salads (cukes, lettuces; no romaine "Caesar" that night) and sides (Jerusalem artichokes, onion rings, snap peas) were expertly prepped but also, as listed, quite pricey.
We had no complaints with the desserts (square donuts with blueberry compote, chocolate tart with liquid center) but they weren't quite up to Karen DeMasco's work at Craft (and the old Craftbar). Tea comes in large, heavy square pots good for 3 to 4 cups a person.
6 beers on tap (including microbrews - Smuttynose IPA from New Hampshire: yum!); list of wines by the glass seemed very close to Craftbar's.
2 amuses: calamari crostini; mini moon-pies with strawberry and kumquat jellies.
Overall, a worthy Vegas export to Manhattan's version of The Strip. I'll wait for more reviews before I shell out for the more expensive cuts.
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