So, my dad was in town this weekend and relied on me for some foodie advice... we spent the weekend wandering around town and making up for the calories burned by doing some SERIOUS eating...
1) Dinner at Tatany52. Pretty good dinner; average-to-good food at an average price. We split a Kirin Ichiban, cucumber with vinegar dressing, ebi tempura, a spider (soft shelled crab) roll, and some unagi pieces. Finished with some very intense green tea ice cream (just the way I like it) with red bean paste on the side. The unagi sushi were particularly delicious; everything else I could take or leave next time. However, I do like this place for its price point, sheer size of menu, and proximity to my apt. Reliable food in the neighborhood.
2) Lunch at Katz's. Went to the counter, tipped a buck and had them make us a pastrami and mustard sandwich on rye with lots of extra pickles on the side. Split the sandwich, pickles and Dr Browns soda for a nice $15 lunch after a morning of walking around.
3) Dinner at Public. I had read about this place all over the NY press and from time to time on this board so I had wanted to check it out. The decor (apparently award-winning) was OK - uber-industrial with terrible acoustics. It was great for its purpose, as dad is no New Yorker and this is the type of place only available in NY. The food, however, was superb. We both ordered 3-course meals and split everything. Began with the passionfruit caiparinha and strawberry/cucumer mojito (both excellent and terribly alcoholic) and some fresh bread (some sort of foccaccia and a fennel roll- also good). For apps we split the kangaroo on felafel and the grilled scallops with creme fraiche. For entrees, the venison and the tasmanian sea trout. For dessert, the hokey pokey ice cream with gingersnap, and the chocolate mousse cake with sweet corn ice cream.. everything was amazing. The kangaroo meat was particularly tender and I adored the trout. Can't say enough good things about the food. I wasn't such a fan of the maple-glazed carrots with the venison, but I've never been a carrot fan. Desserts were decadent. The menu (on menupages.com as well as the website www.public-nyc.com) is fun - they take a crazy ingredient and pair it with 3 or 4 other crazy ingredients; the combos sound overwhelming but are acutally spot-on. Service was good, unobtrusive - although sometimes we had to seek out the waiter.
4) Mary's dairy. Had a passionfruit sorbet ($3). Pretty good but perhaps overly sweet. The place is neat, though, and the other flavors looked interesting - I didn't try anything else.
5) Dinner at Balthazar. Had to take him here for another quintessential NY experience. We split a bottle of chablis (waiter's rec, and a good one), the goat cheese tart, and Le Grand - the $55 shellfish platter. Dad was impressed, as is everyone who's never seen this thing before. Too much food... couldn't finish all the oysters. Finished off dinner with the strawberry financier and the warm chocolate cake with white choco ice cream. 'nuf said.
NOW, time to diet.