Restaurant Week 2013 is upon us!
For those of you unfamiliar with Restaurant Week, it’s about 3 weeks starting January 14th, where NYC Restaurants offer 3 course prix fixe lunch and dinner menus for set prices of $25 and $38/person.
It’s mainly an opportunity for the majority of us who couldn’t otherwise afford to eat at these restaurants a chance to get out and experience the best culinary culture that NYC has to offer on a “smaller” budget.
I’m thinking about surprising Neil and getting us lunch reservations, but I’m still trying to decide where to go:
Here are my top few choices (mind you I’m not the food expert in this house):
For 20 years Charlie Palmer and Aureole have set the standard for upscale American dining, establishing a style of innovative, creative American cuisine that continues to be widely imitated. Though Palmer’s empire now extends across the country, Aureole remains a farm-centric, seasonally aware restaurant. The 700-bottle wine list is electronic, so you can scroll instead of turn the page to choose your vintage
First Course: Farmed Baby Greens Salad, Mandarin, Goat Cheese
Second Course: Scottish Salmon, Crushed potatoes, Watercress, Lemon Oil
Dessert: Chocolate Eclair, Poached Pear, Milk Chocolate, Sorbet
2. Fig & Olive- Midtown
Wall of high-end olive oil neatly placed in minimalist shelves? Check. Assorted pots of finely manicured grasses and shrubbery? Check. Edgy and tasty modern Mediterranean flavor combinations? Check. With Fig & Olive’s attention to detail, you are guaranteed a consistently good meal. The jamon Serrano, fresh fig and warm goat cheese appetizer is a fantastic salty-sweet signature dish. Olive oil is, of course, a staple ingredient in most dishes, and when you find one (or a few) that you like, you can pick up a bottle to take home with you from the on-premise shop.
First Course: Provencal Heirloom Carrot & Thyme: heirloom carrot, celery, onion, garlic, thyme, crushed tomato, olive oil crouton
Second Course: Fig & Olive Chicken Tajine: Moroccan spiced free range chicken served with fig, olive, apricot carrot, zucchini, cipollini onion, tomato, toasted almond, couscous with cilantro and harissa
Dessert: Dessert “Crostini”- Amarena cherry, mascarpone, pistachio. Shortbread with mico-basil.
3. Naples 45
An authentic Neapolitan pizzeria situated in the landmark MetLife Building at East 45th Street, Naples 45 offers al fresco dining in the warmer months and tantalizing regional Southern Italian specialties with luxury takeout service and gourmet slices to go. Naples 45 was awarded the coveted certification of “La Vera Pizza Napoletana,” in recognition of serving authentic Neapolitan pizza according to the strict guidelines of the Verace Pizza Napoletana Association based in Naples, Italy — one of only two such awards in New York City.
First Course: Polpettine, meatballs, sweat & sour sauce
Second Course: Stuffed chicken breast, prosciutto, mozzarella, basil, mashed potatoes
Dessert: Seasonal fruit tart
4. Tamarind (I think this is my favorite choice so far!) I actually wrote this place down last weekend when I was out for a walk. They have the Tamarind Tea house next door that looked exquisite!!
This has become one of the most popular Indian restaurants in the City, with high-end food and an elegant, chic setting. The Flatiron restaurant has a menu that’s sure to wow—shrimp moiley, tandoori chicken and keema nan (ground lamb with nan)—and an adjacent tearoom where you can relax after your meal. It’s the perfect place for spice-loving dates or groups of friendly foodies.
First Course: Mango Strawberry Salad: mango, strawberry, cucumber, baby spinach, ricotta cheese and tamarind dressing
Second Course (choice of 2): Tamarind Chicken: boneless strips of chicken marinated in tamarind, yogurt, black pepper and coriander, served with coconut peanut sauce.
Hyderabadi Nizami Ghost: Boneless lamb with coconut, yogurt, cashews and aromatic spices.
Dessert: Passion fruit kulfi (no idea what this is..but I like the sound of it)
Well. I hope you’re all drooling by now. I know that I am!
The better question though is what are your choices?