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Manhattan

Going to town on Town

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Going to town on Town

Porthos | Sep 30, 2001 09:35 PM

We had an entirely amazing experience at Town on Friday night. This is definitely a “must return” type place and I’m thinking it could challenge Gramercy Tavern for best New American in terms of food. The service, while professional and cordial, still needs some improvement.

Amuse: A chilled cabbage soup with little bits of potato, ham, and drizzled with herb oil. Very refreshing and very cute—-served in tiny soup bowls.

Appetizers: Escargot in sweet garlic cream with truffle risotto and Chilled Pea Soup

Again, I went with my friend who I enjoy battling for the best choices on the menu. The highly touted escargot with truffle risotto was the prize of the evening and my friend (who is every bit the truffle fiend that I am ) claimed the dish without batting an eyelash) Decadent and rich, the dish lived up to every bit of our expectations and more. The garlic perfumed escargot was spooned over the truffle kissed risotto at the last moment from a copper pot. The combination sounds enchanting and it was. However, the chilled pea soup did not yield an inch to the heavily favored escargot. The soup, while light, was assertive in flavor—-embodying the spirit and essence of pea. Baby greens were laced throughout which provided great texture and flavor. A dollop of marscapone (I believe) placed in the center of the bowl held up a perfectly rich and smoky slice of prosciutto.

Entrees: Pan roasted Striped Bass and Roasted Skate

The striped bass came in a red wine reduction. This was very good but not on par with everything else that night. The roasted skate was served with 3 purees-—pea/mint, eggplant/hazelnut, apple/miso—-and topped with a mound of watercress dressed with a pistachio vinaigrette. The crust on the skate was excellent and the flavors wonderful. It was a touch less tender than the skate at Veritas though. In short, excellent, but not the best.

Cheese Course:

We ordered the selection of 3 cheeses which included a blue cheese, a triple cream, and one from sheep’s milk. The cheeses were excellent but we missed out on the much talked about accompaniments. Our selections came with red pear, an onion compote of sorts, and a roasted tomato—-nothing interesting like apple strudel and such. At this point, the service faltered a little. They stopped by 3 times to take away our unfinished cheese plate and we had to beat them back with our knives and forks. Like hell we were going to let them take away something so delicious.

Dessert: Chocolate beignets and Nectarine Tart

Again, the heavy favorite was the chocolate beignet was escorted by a frozen dome of ice cream that tasted faintly like orange marmalade. The beignets were, if I may indulge in the cliché, little fluffy pillows which a hot chocolate center that made you want to close your eyes and sigh. And again, the underdog nectarine tart shined like a star. The pastry crust was flaky and perfect and Ms. Kershner appeared to have one upped mother nature by concentrating the sweetness of the nectarines. The tart was topped with 2 pieces of honey comb. A sweet touch indeed.

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