Restaurants & Bars

Manhattan

craftbar: a report (long)

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Restaurants & Bars 3

craftbar: a report (long)

shortstop | Jul 28, 2002 09:49 AM

Our original destination on the night was Via Emilia. Not a table to be had there at 6:30, we asked to put our name on a waiting list. The maitre d' says that they don't take names for tables, they have had too much trouble with it. We asked him how he knew who was next in line for a table. He said people just wait outside. Huh? There was no formal line outside, just people milling about. We said, "forget this" and I'm glad we did, as we headed around the corner to find craftbar half empty but lively enough on a summer Friday night.

I asked the waitress what her favorite thing on the menu was and the only thing she mentioned was the Halibut. (not surprisingly this is one of the more expensive dishes on this menu.) My dining companion, who was hungry, ordered the halibut, dressed with a sauté of tiny new potatoes and cherry tomatoes. After having the scrumptious risotto balls with gooey pecorino cheese in the middle, and the famous fried sage leaves stuffed with sausage (which lived up to their billing - delicious) it is hard to imagine how the halibut could be someone's favorite dish at this restaurant. Adequate, yes, but did not compare to the two apps.

However, this waitress, who was nice as could be by the way, redeemed herself mightily with her dessert recommendation. Deciding between the Almond cake and the Ricotta fritters (and leaning towards the former...) she practically insisted we order the ricotta fritters. Somehow I expected something along the lines of tempura battered ice-cream. Wrong! These round pillows of cinnamon sugared dough, were stuffed with a slightly sweetened ricotta cheese, like a large "jelly doughnut hole" with ricotta standing in for the jelly, and were out of this world. Too bad there were only two on the plate - we had it with vanilla ice cream instead of the strawberry as listed on the menu - we could have eaten many more of these.

I had been wanting to try craftbar and was not disappointed. Now to get to Craft.

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