Had an outstanding birthday dinner last night at the Grocery. We had reservations for 9pm and were seated immediately.
Started off with a complimentary tiny cup of butternut squash soup with pumpkinseed oil that offset the crammed seating conditions and Upper East side crowd at the place. Then had the shrimp app., it came with feta and peppers. The feta was fresh, the peppers were tasty, and the shrimp was soft and succulent. For my main course, I had the special, which was braised short rib. So tender! The veggies were fine, nothing too special. My girlfriend had the duck breast, which came out a little cold (but fortunately she likes it that way). I tasted it and it was very excellent. I like ducks as animals, they're my favorite animal other than dogs, so I'm not an expert in eating them, but it was cut so nicely, tasted like juicy pieces of pork with a nice crispy outside. I thought it was outstanding. The side of bread before dinner was OK, a little hard, but just fine.
The service was excellent. They were so nice, and every waiter in the place came to our table at least once.
I thought the dessert was excellent too. We both are chocolate freaks, so we both got the chocolate fig cake. The plate came with the cake, a chocolate dipping sauce, homemade coconut ice cream, two orange slices with pomegranate and a lemon sorbet.
I really enjoyed myself. Based on all of the hype, we went in with sort of low expectations, but I feel like it lived up to the hype.
+'s: Great food, good service
-'s: Manhattan crowd, bland decor, cramped seating