I only get to NYC a few times a year, as sadly I spend most of the time in the culinary wasteland of Los Angeles. Ok, its a wasteland in most other respects, but that's not the point. Anyhaps, here are some thoughts as I (sadly) conclude my visit here:
1. What happened to Union Square? The service is still impeccable but the food seems to have become an overpriced joke. I had a dish of tagliatelle pasta with white truffles and the tuflles were mere specks lost in the starch. The weren't even shaved, they appeared to be diced. A gnochhi apetizer had about 4 little dumplings in it.
2. Bathazaar remains at the top of its game despite the fact that the whole neighborhood has become a giant tourist magnet. (I'm not a tourist, I still keep an apartment in Manhattan, so there.) Perfectly turned out food--love the brandade, lobster risotto, steak tartare, and pot de creme to nmae a few, and an attentive well trained staff as opposed to:
3. Lure. Maybe a restaurant shouldn't open until it's figured out how the little details like getting the food from the kitchen to the table. Unfortunate cramped seating unless you score a booth and horrible acoustics. The food is uninspired and overpriced except for the clam chowder which is the best I've ever had.
4. BLT steak has somehow gotten better. The dover sole I had was memorable and oh those popovers. Can't wait until his seafood joint opens.
5. Pietros. Never gets any ink but its the last of the old time, non chain steak joints. Always a pleasure.
6. Its getting harder and harder to find a good slice. Can we put classic slice pizza on the endangered species list and hope it returns like the bald eagle. I still miss my beloved Candido on 83rd and 1st. R.I.P.
7. I admire the democratic, no res seating policy at Blue Ribbon, but because of it I can only get in about one of every four trips.
8. God I miss it here.