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Restaurants & Bars 11


cabrales | Jan 17, 2004 06:15 PM

I had a disappointing lunch at Dumonet, particularly given that my first meal there (dinner several months ago) had been quite good. Even if it's the execution on a Saturday lunch that is contributing to this deterioration in cuisine quality sampled, it's a bit sad.

The only prior time I had been to Dumonet, there had been a mistake on my part that led to believe I had signed a credit card receipt when all I had signed was the initial bill that hotel guests would sign. I had worried about that unfortunate situation, although the restaurant had realized this and all had been rectified. This time, ironically, the restaurant overcharged me on the initial bill by billing me a la carte instead of based on the two-course prix fixe. Rather ironic, that. Equally ironically, even though I was treated very wonderfully and the prior incident was either forgotten or deemed irrelevant, I am not sure I will be motivated to revisit Dumonet any time soon.

No amuses were served. I ordered lobster bisque, with salpicon of lobster. There were obviously little bits of lobster flesh in a soup container, on top of which was poured the bisque from a white jug. The lobster bisque was significantly more salty than it should have been, and the alcohol included was less than it should have been. The temperature of the bisque was also ever-so-slightly less warm than I would have preferred. Overall, average at best.

My entree were langoustines with oysters and a champagne sauce. Even though langoustines from Brittany had been utilized, I've had much more pristine langoustines from that region. Still, Dumonet is one of the few restaurants that, to my knowledge, serve langoustines hailing from Brittany. Alas, the butter-based, champagne-based sauce was mediocre. Little bits of chives would have been fine had the sauce been appropriate. Two bodies of the langoustines had been breaded on one side, and pan-fried. I found the breading generally detracted from the sampling of the langoustines flesh, which was not of ideal quality to begin with. Overall, somewhat disappointing.

A glass of champagne ($18) accompanied the entire meal.
With an expensive single espresso at $7, and the $10 supplement for the langoustines, the total bill was $77 after tax and before tips. The prix fixe (2 courses) was $36. Again, I skipped dessert because of my general disappointment and my not liking dessert as a category. A la carte is also available, but all the a la carte dishes are included in the prix fixe choices (some of which had supplements, like the Dover sole and certain truffled dishes). A 3-course (with dessert) was in the low $40s.

Generally, dining room assistance was appropriate. I estimated that I was among the youngest clients, with a significant portion of the clientele appearing to be at least 60 years old (or accompanying individuals of such age). To be clear, it's great that individuals in such age range are dining out and I hope I would have the inclination and health to do so when I am in that age range. Dumonet, perhaps understandably given its location within The Carlyle, has the largest percentage of less young diners that I have noticed in NY.

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