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Amada


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#151 mrbigjas

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Posted 21 August 2006 - 08:20 PM

I'm almost at the end of my pregnancy (a little less than six weeks to go) and I'd like to have dinner at Amada for our last night out pre-baby, probably sometime in the first half of September. I have a couple of friends that have had to wait for their tables despite reservations and I can neither stand for long periods of time nor wait in a bar. What would be the best night/time to go to avoid a wait?

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A Monday or Tuesday evening might be your best bet. There's a non-smoking bar in the back lounge area where you could wait and have a Virgin Mojito or Bloody Shame while you were waiting, if you even had to wait. Like in any busy restaurant, early reservations (7PM or earlier) always get seated on time. The later ones are at the mercy of the folks that won't get the hell out when they're done, and feel the need to nurse their coffee for an extra half hour. :rolleyes:

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or the folks like us who ask for our check, wait 15 minutes to get it and then wait 15 minutes to pay it...

... anyway, best of luck ladydisdain. i can't think of a better place for a final fling--we went last month for similar reasons and had a great time. maybe mention your situation when you make your reservation, too?

#152 KatieLoeb

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 11:38 PM

or the folks like us who ask for our check, wait 15 minutes to get it and then wait 15 minutes to pay it...


Is this a more general statement, or did you have this experience specifically at Amada? If you did, then I suspect TPTB would want me (you) to tell them. If it happened elsewhere, then that still sucks.

In a busy restaurant they want you to un-ass that chair ASAP. There's already someone impatiently waiting for it. I'd be very surprised if it took this long anywhere that really needed to turn over the table.

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#153 mrbigjas

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 08:39 AM

or the folks like us who ask for our check, wait 15 minutes to get it and then wait 15 minutes to pay it...


Is this a more general statement, or did you have this experience specifically at Amada? If you did, then I suspect TPTB would want me (you) to tell them. If it happened elsewhere, then that still sucks.

In a busy restaurant they want you to un-ass that chair ASAP. There's already someone impatiently waiting for it. I'd be very surprised if it took this long anywhere that really needed to turn over the table.

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it's happened to me quite a bit in the last couple years; it definitely happened at amada--this was back in early july. i was surprised because i thought the same thing you just said, that they'd want us out of there. but our res was at 8, and it was probably 1030 before we were done, so the crowd had thinned out.

but either way it was a very minor service glitch in what was a great evening. don't get the wrong impression.

#154 philadining

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 09:02 AM

I'd just like to go on the record as saying that I like the term "un-ass that chair" and I think we should all try to work it into our daily conversations.

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#155 I_call_the_duck

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 10:10 AM

I'm game. Can I paraphrase, and say "honey, un-ass that sofa and take out the garbage?"
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#156 Andrew Fenton

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 10:38 AM

Just gonna jump in here to mention that I tried Amada for the first time, at lunch the other day. Twelve bones for the lunch special is a heckuva deal, especially that outrageously good gazpacho. And the cheese balls, which put the "crack" into "croquette".

I fully intend to re-ass one of those chairs very soon...

#157 davecap

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 07:01 AM

We went to dinner at Amada on Friday and had a nice dinner. The place was full at 6pm so we had to wait a few minutes to pounce on some seats at the bar, but it was worth the wait. My wife started with the sangria tinto, which went down way too easy. I had a San Miquel. We thought about getting a pitcher of the sangria, but with someplace to drive, we thought a little better about it.

We had a limited amount of time to eat, so we did not delve into the chefmenus or some of the larger offerings. The people sitting next to us at the bar were very friendly,and appear to be neighborhood regulars. They suggested the parmesan artichokes. As an aside, this is one of the things that I enjoy about eating at bars in restaurants, or eating in european restaurants. In a restaurant like Amada, I think the dining community is adventurous and everyone is having fun and talking. I think the bar really aids this experience where you can share what you like and don't like. You casn easily look overand see what looks good and ask about it.

So we started with the manchego, granny smith apple and honey. This was a nice light start, and we both love Manchego. We ended up saving the last few pieces for dessert.

Then we ordered the marinated anchovies and the parmesan artichokes. I told my wife she had to trust me on the anchovies,as she is not one for oily fish. She was very surprised. I thought I would have to eat the entire plate, but she ended up eating half. I loved them. I think they were the best thing we had that night. Then we had the parmesan artichokes, which I thought were good, but not great. The parmesan was not as salty as I would have liked, and the dish needed some spice, white pepper even.

Round two was another glass of sangria tinto and I had the sangria blanco after having read the recipe from Katieloeb on egullet. Again, this stuff was going down way too easy. I guess with two glasses each, we probablycould have had a pitcher, but then I would have felt obligated to finish it if there were more than four glasses in it.

Next up was one of the specials for the evening, a seafood crepe with shrimp and scallops, mushrooms, red peppers over a shrimp seafood sauce. A small frisee salad was on top. This was very good and probably our next favorite dish. The flavors were on and I think they could offer this as a full dinner menu item. Thesauce was not too rich and with a bite from the vinaigrette, was very tasty.

Finally, we had the spicy potatoes, which were nice and smoky with paprika, but not as spicy as I had thought. The potato was cut into a "tater tot" shape and then fried. Nicely crusted on the outside and melting in the center. The only issue I had with these as that one would be mildly crunchy in the center, and then one would be melting in the center.

The bar tender was really informative and nice to talk with about the menu. He was very polite. The bar also seemed to have plenty of people working so that the bartenders could take food orders as well as drink orders. Often times, the bartenders barely keep up with the drink orders.

We had a really nice meal and will be returning as we did see a lot of things we want to try.

I kinda wish we lived in the neighborhood so we could be regulars.

#158 philadining

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 08:16 AM

It must be love....

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#159 percyn

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 08:55 AM

Ohhh...I think this proves that it is...

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#160 shacke

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 09:09 AM

Ohhh...I think this proves that it is...

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This was after a pitcher of Sangria. He thought it was a fox. :biggrin:
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#161 JanMcBaker

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 09:22 AM

Ohhh...I think this proves that it is...

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This was after a pitcher of Sangria. He thought it was a fox. :biggrin:

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I liked what Evan said about it.... "I got you Babe!"..... :laugh:

Wonderful dinner, by the way. Loads of fabulous tapas, then the pork and sides! Diann, thank you so much for getting this together! it was sooo yummy, and I got to meet some more eGullet members!

Eeek! Edited to add-- How could I forget mentioning the sangria! It was wonderfully refreshing and quite tasty. Nice job, Katie! Had a glass of red and one of the white. I'd have a hard time deciding which one I prefer.

Edited by JanMcBaker, 06 September 2006 - 09:31 AM.

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#162 philadining

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 09:28 AM

But first, some foreplay...

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This was entirely too much Tapas, given the huge pile of pork that was to come, but it was well-chosen by our excellent waiter.

The Croquettas de Bacalao seemed like they had a bit more cod than previous versions, which is a good thing... But the winner was the shortrib flatbread, I could have eaten that all night...

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#163 philadining

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 09:39 AM

Then, the main event...

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accompanied by:

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I feel like we barely put a dent in the roast pork that was provided, but then, there are worse things in the world than having leftovers to take home!

You'd think we would have learned after last time, but if I were to do it again, I'd suggest having much less tapas to start, maybe one or two things: a cheese plate or charcuterie sampler or something, so we could concentrate more on the roast pork, which was excellent, by the way....

Big fun, good food, nice seeing/meeting everybody. Thanks for making it happen, Diann!

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#164 shacke

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 09:48 AM

yes, thanks Diann. It was an enormous variety of food in supra-gulleteer amounts. My personal favorites were the short rib flatbread and of course, the star of the show, Pedro's gal.
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#165 I_call_the_duck

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 11:10 AM

Ohhh...I think this proves that it is...
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I think he may even have taken our honored guest home with him. :raz:

Diann, thanks again for arranging this lovely feast. Come on y'all, that wasn't that much food was it? What are we all having for dinner tonight?

edited to add: I think we should make a book of all the Pedro photos.

Edited by I_call_the_duck, 06 September 2006 - 11:12 AM.

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#166 Jeff L

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 11:17 AM

Ohhh...I think this proves that it is...
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I think he may even have taken our honored guest home with him. :raz:

Diann, thanks again for arranging this lovely feast. Come on y'all, that wasn't that much food was it? What are we all having for dinner tonight?

edited to add: I think we should make a book of all the Pedro photos.

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Looks like you guys had way too much fun, I'm jealous. It doesn't seem possible, but I think you ordered more food than the first time we went!

Now may be a good time to report that Amada was just voted best new dining spot in Philly by the folks at Zagat.

#167 Andrew Fenton

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 11:29 AM

Yeah, it was great, and thanks to Diann for putting it together. I will say that I'm relieved that the pig head conversation went the way it did, rather than veering off into Lord of the Flies territory.

Too much food? Probably; the tapas were so good that by the time the pork came around I wasn't too interested, I'm afraid. I was too full-up on that terrific short rib flatbread, or flat-rib shortbread, or whatever it was. Yow. Still, my only real regret was that I didn't manage to snag that pig carcass, to lug it home and make some awesome roasted pork stock.

Edited by Andrew Fenton, 06 September 2006 - 11:30 AM.


#168 mrbigjas

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 12:18 PM

man i can't wait till i can go out again. i'm heading back to amada post haste.

#169 percyn

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 05:11 PM

A few more pics from the other end of the table to suppliment Jeff's great shots.
Pardon the slightly large image size, but you can almost taste the food when the images are actual size.

Good job Katie
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Iberico Chorizo
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Hmmm...crispy skin
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#170 KatieLoeb

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 06:24 PM

:blush:

Thanks Percy!

The sangrias (both the red and the white) really are quite photogenic as well as tasty, even if I do say so myself. One of my favorite things is to serve a glass to a customer sitting by the window on a sunny day. It just looks so appealing with the light streaming through it. Many a glass has sold itself to another table that way. :smile:

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#171 g_camper

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Posted 07 September 2006 - 11:16 AM

I had lunch at AMADA today and had the pleasure of Katie's company. The lamb albondigas were excellent as was everything else, including Katie's wine selections. I am only sorry that I missed the event - What a Babe!

#172 percyn

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 08:46 AM

After enjoying the steak flatbread, I decided to try it and home...it was quite easy and delicious:

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Edited by percyn, 09 September 2006 - 09:10 AM.


#173 KatieLoeb

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 09:48 AM

Percy:

We've come to expect nothing short of brilliance from you and you never disappoint us. :wub:

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#174 Andrew Fenton

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 11:24 AM

Yum. What did you do for the flatbread, Percy?

Seems like this would be an ideal use for leftover short ribs. Guess what I have in the freezer? Guess what I'm going to cook, real soon?

#175 percyn

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 02:17 PM

Andrew, I used a store bought Tandoori Naan, which I toasted in the oven. Slather it with some aioli, herbs, grilled flank/skirt steak (or short ribs), caramelized onions and top with scallions, manchego or pecorino romano.

Katie, I thank you for your king words, but can't claim brilliance since I am merely copying this dish from a brilliant chef :rolleyes:

Edited by percyn, 09 September 2006 - 05:47 PM.


#176 dagordon

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 06:14 PM

Well, it is with much regret that I report that our inaugural meal at Amada last night was very disappointing. I'm actually VERY hesitant to post about it, but Vadouvan's latest thread has given me courage. And what the hell, I don't really know any of you personally. :smile:

First, I should say that everyone was very nice. Service was excellent. The design of the restaurant is lovely. The red sangria was delicious (we found the white a bit bland).

We opted for the $65/person tasting, as we figured that this would give the restaurant the opportunity to present its best work.

1. Gaspacho w/ the fried cheese ball on top. This was excellent. It was pretty much the only thing that I had that I would have wanted more of.

2. Serrano ham salad with spinach, blue cheese, figs, and some kind of pimenton encrusted nut. This was a fine salad. But the serrano had no taste, and that's, well, a big component of this sort of dish. This was surprising, as I spotted a couple of Redondo Iglesias 18 month hams (same sold at DiBurno's) hanging in the charcuteria area, and that's a fantastic ham, which we have all the time. This didn't taste like that.

3. Creamy tuna dip w/ flatbreads. This was unobjectionable, but didn't really do much for us.

4. Tortilla Espanola with Saffron Aioli. This was pretty heavy, and a bit dry. The saffron aioli was tasty enough. But a couple of small bites was enough to get the idea.

5. Garrotxa w/ garlic dulce de leche. The cheese was good, the garlic dulce de leche was, of course, extremely sweet, and detracted from the cheese, imho.

6. Beef shortribs flatbread. The flabread was very large. And it was very heavy, as cheesy short rib is bound to be. Didn't care for this. A couple of bites was enough.

7. Gambas al ajillo. These were good (how can shrimp in garlic and oil not be?) But I do remember the gambas al ajillo that we had in Spain being more overwhelmingly in your face flavorful.

8. Lamb chops stuffed w/ goat cheese in romesco sauce. We really needed a respite at this point, something light. Some simply prepared fish would have been wonderful. Lamb chops would have been wonderful too, again simply prepared. The goat cheese stuffing here was very unpleasant. I couldn't eat this. The combo just didn't work for me. My g/f managed to cut and scrape off the cheesy part and salvage some lamb.

9. Tenderloin w/ cabrales and foie gras. The tenderloin wasn't particularly tender. The foie was, I think, quite overcooked. The cabrales was a bit unwelcome in this context; yet more cheesy meat (see 2, 6, and 8), and, unfortunately, cabrales essence had leeched into the otherwise ok red wine sauce.

9. Blue foot and another kind of mushroom, in garlic and oil. This would have been fine in another context, but in this context, the mushrooms didn't have enough flavor to prevent the dish from seeming like just more heaviness, what w/ the oil.

10. Lobster a la plancha. Texture of the lobster was good; lobster itself didn't have any taste. The dish seemed to me like yet more garlic and oil. My g/f found it refreshing, but still not tasty.

I think a big problem was heaviness, cheesy meat on the one hand and garlicy oil on the other. I like these things just fine in moderation; this was too much, particularly the both of them in the same meal. Even apart from the issue of these dishes in combination, though, I don't think that, with the exceptoin of the gazpacho, anything individually was particularly, well, delicious.

So, there it is. Clearly a lot of folks love the food here. It goes without saying that this is merely the report of two people's experiences, with their particular tastes, over the course of merely one dinner. But perhaps it will serve as a warning to those thinking about the tasting menu who might, at the very least, find the above too heavy.

(You must understand that I am not a wimpy eater. Can't remember ever complaining about a meal being too heavy.)

now, we've spent a grand total of only 2 weeks in spain. but we absolutely loved the tapas that we had there, and that we've had in the us. perhaps what we had here was simply a certain style of tapas, which just isn't our cup of tea.

Oh, I opted for the wine pairings, which were, I think, quite good (and quite a good value), considering that each (there were 3 in total) had to be paired with several dishes. An albarino, a rioja, and a third that escapes me.

#177 ladydisdain

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Posted 19 September 2006 - 08:52 PM

On the 5th we had dinner at Amada for our last big meal pre-baby. I'm so glad we chose it, because we were both thrilled with the whole experience. The server was friendly and knowledgeable and answered stupid questions like "what's a croquette again?" without looking at us like we were morons. It was a fantastic meal; the only false note we found was in the gratis tuna dip with flatbreads that was brought to the table. It was free, so I feel a little odd complaining about it, but it really stood out as not so great. Tuna with too much mayo and some capers - it was about as unremarkable as deli tuna salad could possibly be. It seemed an odd choice.

Anyway, a little photo essay of what we ate. I kept forgetting to take pictures until we'd already started certain dishes, so that's why the presentation doesn't look so hot in a number of them:

First, three kinds of cheese - the manchego, the goat cheese, and a Spanish bleu - all delicious:
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The apparently ubiquitous (and delicious) spicy potatoes:
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Absolutely unbelievable seared scallops in crab cream over white asparagus - they looked prettier before I started to inhale them:
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Goat cheese stuffed lamb chops. I didn't try these as I don't eat lamb, but my lamb-loving husband devoured them in about 3.4 seconds:
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Possibly my favorite part of the entire meal - the utterly dreamy duck flatbread:
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One of two fantastic nonalcoholic drinks I enjoyed, both of which were all fancied up like real cocktails which went a long way toward soothing my wine-missing self - this one's a mango colada, and the other was a nonalcoholic mojito:
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We forewent dessert in order to split a chocolate mint sundae at the Franklin Fountain, because we'd never been, but we agreed we need to return to Amada just to try the chocolate five ways. It's the only thing we regret about the night (although the sundae was awesome).
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#178 Joe Gerard

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Posted 03 October 2006 - 06:55 AM

My wife and I enjoyed a very nice meal at Amada this past Sunday. Spanish cuisine is so poorly represented in New York - and sadly, the rest of the U.S. - that it was nice to be reminded of how good it can be. The evening was made even more pleasant by our server, who not only made accurate suggestions as to the number and type of dishes to order, but was extremely knowledgeable about the wine list and seemed genuinely excited to make suggestions and find out what we thought of them.

After two clunkers in both food and service the previous nights, Amada helped restore our faith in the Philly restaurant scene.

#179 chowfun

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Posted 07 October 2006 - 12:43 PM

We went to Amada for the first time last night to celebrate both our 15th wedding anniversary and my husband's birthday. We brought our 7 and 11 year old boys who love good food and are adventerous eaters generally. One surprise is that we were able to get a reservation for a table for 4 at 5:30 on the same day we called, and it was a first Friday. Maybe the weather made it easier for us to do this.

We were welcomed into the restaurant by three friendly greeters (none of the hipper than thou attitude that we have encountered numerous times at other restaurants). Our server was very knowlegable about the food and the wine. The service was excellent, seamless, very efficient. The restaurant was noisy but not so loud that you could not hear the people at your table. It worked for us, because our kids can talk loudly at times.

The food was perfect. We thought about the chef's tasting menu, but we decided to order off the menu. We had a three cheese sampler; manchego with truffle honey (I loved that honey!), fresh goat cheese with strawberries in balsalmic, a soft aromatic cheese served with chocolate hazelnut spread (an odd combination that worked). We had some serrano ham (it's proscuitto! exclaimed my 7 yr old as he tried to take his fourth serving). The sauteed artichoke hearts were good. We had an amazing salt cod dish that tasted like a cross between fish chowder and white fish salad and a souffle, garnished with caviar. We had the calamari, lobster and lamb chops ala plancha, all great, the lamb chops were especially good, cooked perfectly, great quality. The scallops with wild mushroom cannolloni was great, the homemade pasta was as good as we have eaten anywhere. We had the green salad (a tart and crispy foil to the rest of the food) and the potato torta with aioli very good. We were given a complimentary dish of chicken in a truffle sauce with a fried egg on top that may have been the best overall dish we had. I'm not sure that they meant to serve it to us, but once they did our server told us it was a complimentary dish to us. It was a very nice gesture and a great dish.

My wine was very good and our server was able to help me choose something that suits my taste in red wine (fruity, not sweet, no tannins). My husband had 2 lychee mojitos.

We skipped dessert because we were quite full at the end of dinner. The bill before tip was 198 dollars for four people (my kids ate as much as we did), four drinks from the bar and a bottle of mineral water. This is a very fair price for food, drink and service at this high quality level. Amada deserves it's rave reviews.

#180 Vadouvan

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Posted 07 October 2006 - 03:01 PM

Well, it is with much regret that I report that our inaugural meal at Amada last night was very disappointing. I'm actually VERY hesitant to post about it, but Vadouvan's latest thread has given me courage. And what the hell, I don't really know any of you personally.



:smile: ........Dude, I will walk you to the cliff but I aint jumping with you.
Dont use me as justification for less than stellar reviews........Jeez...... :laugh:



My wife and I enjoyed a very nice meal at Amada this past Sunday. Spanish cuisine is so poorly represented in New York - and sadly, the rest of the U.S. - that it was nice to be reminded of how good it can be.




Um......Joe...Amada is a very good restaurant, Spanish cuisine isnt poorly represented in New York, You should try Urena's, Tia Pol, Boqueria and Casa Mono/Bar Jamon...................In fact while I love Amada, I can comfortably say without hesitation Casa mono does everything they do much better and Cheaper.....especially the a-la plancha items.
The razor clams, bacalao balls and sweetbreads at CMono are the reference standard of flavor.

Edited by Vadouvan, 07 October 2006 - 03:05 PM.