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Manhattan

Mesa Grill et al.

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Restaurants & Bars

Mesa Grill et al.

Kent | Jul 4, 2001 02:15 PM

Went on a one week bender at my bank acct's expense eating at Jean Georges, Mesa Grill and Union Pacific and thought all 3 were excellent if very different dining and taste experiences. Union Pacific's $115 (ouch!) tasting menu was a revelation, particularly amazing were Salmon Gelee, the Spring Garlic Soup with razor clams and lardons and the Veal in fricasse of green onions and paprika and the cheese course. I did the wine tasting course with the meal and they were very well matched. Desert was only OK. The service was fabulous, however. Jean Georges was wonderful as usual with an amazing lobster citrus entree that blew my mind, but Mesa Grill was the real surprise. The place has serious problems--rude phone reservation people, and when I showed up they asked if I had confirmed my rsv and asked if my party had been reduced from 2 to 3 (it had not and I had confirmed the rsv). Its also deafeningly noisy and the service was slow and inattentive. That said, I go much more to eat, than for ambiance or great svc, and the food was very, very good (perhaps I hit a good night as I have heard others here say the food is a crapshoot, but we tried 4 appetizers and 3 main courses and all were excellent). The food wasn't flawless--my wonderful sauce tended to overwhelm the perfectly cooked rabbit, but the flavors of every other dish were subtle and very well balanced. The seafood dishes were memorable. I was very pleasently surpized at the quality of the food, having heard that the place was all hype.

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