Friday, November 9, 2012

New York Eating - Day One

A few weeks ago, the husband and I hopped on an early morning train bound for New York City. Although sleepy, we were excited for three days of eating, strolling, eating, drinking some good wines, eating...and more eating.

Our trips almost always revolve around dinner reservations, must-eats, wine, sussing out off-the-beaten-path's an understatement to say that our trips are food- and wine-centric.

So we were very excited for this trip. We had lined up the Michelin trifecta - a one-star (Minetta Tavern), two-star (Marea), and a three-star (Le Bernardin). We had also gotten all kinds of recommendations for little bars, bagels, and to-die-for desserts. Too much to eat all in one trip.

Our first meal was at Minetta Tavern. In a word: delicious! This was the husband's second time there and he had RAVED about the black label burger. He was right - it was fantastic. It's quite simply the best burger I've ever had. A delightful, rich combination of dry-aged ribeye, skirt, and brisket. No cheese...just some caramelized onions. Normally I'd want a nice, stinky bleu cheese to go with this, but it just seemed wrong with such a beefy burger. It was the perfect start to the weekend.

That same day, we had dinner reservations at Le Bernardin. I had triumphantly gotten confirmation of our reservations a couple months earlier and went into dinner with some seriously high expectations. In a word: disappointing. The service was impeccable and the food was executed to perfection. But it was lacking the creativity, the excitement, the innovation that we had expected given its stellar reputation and, being honest, its price tag. Everything tasted very good, but I left wanting more.

So beautiful. So sad.

It was disappointing, but I guess we partially brought it on ourselves with insanely high expectations. Next time? Won't go into dinner expecting the moon.

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