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Aaron T

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  1. Shoot. That is disappointing to hear that they have declined. I'm here in LA for the weekend so I guess I won't be going to Patina. I think I'll splurge for a good sushi meal instead.
  2. I'll be sure to try some of these places. I'm always on the lookout for a good burger so I'll let you know how they were. Thanks for the advice! I believe I have been corralled into a daytrip to Niagra Falls. Is there anywhere to eat there for lunch either on the US or Canadian side?
  3. But not at the flagship Patina.... Is Patina as good as it used to be? I haven't been in about 2 years and I enjoyed it when I was there last...
  4. Also, when else could you consider matzoh with hummus a special delicacy? Hope your Passover went well Macrosan!
  5. I'll be going up to Rochester soon for a few days for a friend's wedding. Do any eGulletteers have any suggestions for places to eat up there? Any suggestions appreciated!
  6. Aaron T


    This cuisine sounds mysterious and intriguing.
  7. Aaron T


    Pan Sorry to hear of your Bouley disaster. It sure contrasts with the dinner I had there a few weeks ago with some other eGulleteers. I know from reading your prior posts that this was a splurge meal and a treat to yourself and it sucks when treats don't go as planned. I hope your next 4 star experience is worthy of the 4 star designation. I ate at JG on Monday night and I thought it was a 4 star experience, but it was the only time I have been to JG. Good luck!
  8. Aaron T


    Suzanne What you saw was indeed the restaurant and not the bar. There actually isn't even a bar in the restaurant, although there are some loungey type chairs when you walk in on the right where you can geta drink while waiting for your table and I assume they have waiter service in that section. The tables are not deluxe, but I was reasonably comfortable in the chairs provided and certainly didn't feel like in I was sitting in any type of cafeteria (either the Jr. High kind or the Conde Nast shnazzy kind). The tables were somewhat translucent, and didn't feel cheap to me. The vibe kind of reminded me of Spoon+ in London.
  9. Aaron T


    I had dinner at 66 last night and I left very impressed. I called and was able to obtain same day reservations, albeit at 6:30 PM. We started with the squab a l'orange - which came in a broth with crystalized tamarind. This was one of the highlights of the meal - it was excellent. I liked the candied tamarind too. We also had the scallion pancakes with a dipping sauce of some sort. They were hot and crispy and good. For mains we had Steamed Cod in a ginger and scallion broth, Crispy Garlic Chicken, and a side of Stir Fried Asian Greens (Bok Choy). The steamed cod was the best thing we ate. The broth/sauce gave it a really nice flavor. The crispy chicken was good, but not as special as the cod. The bok choy was presented nicely on the plate. For dessert we ordered the frozen mandarin orange slices. Based on the menu, we didn't realize that this was orange sorbet cut in the shape of oraneg slices and put on candied orange peels. The only thing I would not order again. So next we tried the small box of cookies. The cookies came in a red and white chinese takeaway box. Cookies were mollasses, peanut butter, and chocolate chip. The unusual aspect of the cookies was that there was salt crystals on the cookies... I've never seen that before. Salty & sweet - it worked, but I still think it is strange. I thought the design of the restaurant from the decor to the teapots and glasses was really cool. Service was also good, especially for a new restaurant. No complaints whatsoever about anything. I will go back for sure, as the food and total experience were great. The tab came to $60 per person including tax & tip (excluding alcohol). On an odd note, at the end of the meal, I asked my waiter if I could keep a copy of the menu as they were printed on paper. He told me no, but that they could fax me one if I called. Today I called and the receptionist told me that they weren't allowed to do that either. Don't know why. The menu is not very descriptive either, so it is not like they would be giving away their secret recipe of 11 original herbs and spices......
  10. Aaron T


    I had a restaurant week dinner ($30.03) at Atelier with two non-Egulleteers on Wednesday night and everything we had was quite good. They also treated us well, despite the fact that we weren't paying full fare. There were two choices for each course Apps: Quail "Praline", Black Truffle Gelee, Herb Salad or Roasted Butternut Squash, Chestnuts and Porcini Mushroom Salad Entrees: Salmon topped with Horseradish Crust or Free-Range Chicken "en Cocotte" Dessert: Pineapple Lemongrass Consomme, Coconut "Ile Flottante" or Warm Chocolate Passionfruit Cake I had the quail, salmon and cake and tried the chicken and soupy dessert. We had a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc (as one of my dining companions had lived in NZ), which matched well with our food. The quail was wrapped in a lettuce or cabbage leaf and was very good. The truffle gelee added nicely to the flavor. The salmon was also cooked nicely and the horseradish crust was a delicious preparation. The desserts were good, but not as delicious as the rest of the meal. They also started us with the trout canape mentioned by a previous poster and then an eel amuse bouche. Service was particularly good - a warm welcome and competent friendly and efficient throughout. I was sufficiently impressed to want to return and explore more of the menu as well as the rice crispy with peanut butter ice cream dessert, which sounds particularly good to me. The only unpleasant surprise was seeing Reverend Al Sharpton entering as we were leaving, as we had been discussing him over tea and petit four just moments before and said comments were not favorable.
  11. Cabby Kitchen 22 is a good value, but I wouldn't want you to think that it is the Aureole experience. I have been to kitchen 22 a couple of times and enjoyed it - a good mid priced option in the flatiron/gramercy neighborhood. I don't think they take reservations, so the wait at peak times can be long, although I didn't seem to have that problem. There are 5 choices for each of three courses - all for $25 - with sugestions for wines by the glass to go with the mains. Unlike NY Mag, I thought that they served a lot of food, especially for $25. The desserts were small & I was glad because I was already msotly full by then. I preferred the seared tuna appetizer to the salmon tartare appetizer (because the tartare came with a lemongrass panna cotta that I found to be unpleasant), athough it has been a few weeks since I was there last, so I do not know if they are still on the menu. I can't recall what I ate for for mains but I remember them being fine. I think it is a nice looking modern space, in which many tables have been fit. I think it meets its ambitions admirably, but I wouldn't want anyone to think they were getting a fine dining experience. Also one of the two times I went it was very loud and hard to hear my friends.
  12. Aaron T


    I took some friends who love Indian food to lunch there on the day after Thanksgiving and we all enjoyed it. We ended up just getting the lunch buffet because there were so many good dishes on it and that way we could try more stuff. I hadn't realized they had a lunch buffet and it was a bargain whatever they charged for it - it was less than $15 per person before tax & tip for the buffet. They brought naan to the table to begin. I can't recall most of what we ate, but it included tandoori chicken, a spicy chicken, rice, several veggie dishes and the rice pudding to finish. I was suprised that they were serving chicken wings on a seperate table, I think I saw this at the Jackson diner too and have wondered about it since as I hadn't realized that chicken wings were a part of Indian cooking. Anyway, I was glad to have another yummy meal at Diwan and it sounds like they are continuing to fire on all cylinders.
  13. Aaron T


    I'll add my thanks to the organizers of the dinner and especially to Suvir for cooking and describing what was in all the dishes, or I never would have had any idea what it was we were eating. Not only were the principal foods tasty, but so were the sides, such as the green rice dish that came with the chops which was so good. For all the tension some felt, I thought there was a lot of laughter, from people who were both intentionally and unintentionally funny. After tasting all those dishes I don't know how I'm going to go back to an ordinary Indian restaurant again .... but then again I am still so full I am not sure when I'll be eating any food again. I am so glad that I was able to make the list at the last minute.
  14. Looking forward to the feast! Thanks for squeezing me in.
  15. I have been meaning to post about my dinner at the Fifth Floor for a few weeks, but am finally getting around to it. I was curious to taste what chef Gras was currently serving as I had previously enjoyed his cooking at Peacock Alley in New York City. I had several dishes. The food was organized by category, rather than appetizers & entrees: Ocean, Field & Forest, Farm. Usually I find this kind of thing too pretentious, but it seemed to work there. I had several dishes paired with suggested wines. I began with "Oh Toro" - described on the menu as "finely sliced raw blue fin tuna belly, lime and Hawaiian salt." (not just any salt will do, apparently.) This was paired with a Nigl Reisling from Austria. The tuna tasted really fresh and I liked the citrus of the lime. Next I had "Hudson Valley Foie Gras" from the farm section. It was served with a Savenniers 1999 Chenin Blanc. The dish is described as "roasted with Indonesian peppercorn, chanterelles, and corn sorbet." Again, I insisted on the Indonesian peppersorn in favor of the more common Argentenian peppercorn, which was just too common for me. This dish was served beautifully. The fois gras was served on top of the chanterelles, which were on top of a corn puree. Then fois gras jus was poured on top of it. In addition an ice-cream sundae style dish was brought out with corn sorbet, lastly, a bowl of popcorn was brought out for texture, where more typically on emight be served a brioche. The popcorn was a nice texture to the velvety fois, which was superb. The peppercorns and the chanterelles gave it a nice flavor. The corn sorbet was interesting, as it tasted like eating corn on the cob - but ice cream. Sweet and strange, but good. I liked the salt of the popcorn as well. I didn't eat many of the mushrooms as they are not my fave. The wine complemented the fois and was not overwhelmed by it. Lastly, I had "Lamb" described as "loin slowly baked with dates, black cumin and endives, couscous." It was delicious. It tasted lammy and the dates and cumin gave it an eastern flavor that went well with the couscous. This dish was served with a syrah, a 1999 St. Joseph Offerus. ( The waiter wrote down the wines for me I can't read all of what he wrote, so my apologies for misspellings as I am not a wine expert.) The wine was rich and a little spicy. I skipped dessert as I was full, but did have some tea, and I am glad I did as this was one of the nicest after dinner tea services I have had. They had an extensive tea list. I had mint melange. The tea was loose tea (not in a bag). They brought out sugar, brown sugar, honey, milk and something else as options to pour in the tea. I added a little honey & sugar and it was great. It was so good I had them bring more hot water and I had some more. It was a great relaxing way to end such a delicious meal. Chef Gras's cooking was similar to what he had been serving in New York, although this menu had a clearer indication of what might be an entree (price). The service was friendly and informative but not overly familiar. Suprisingly for a Thursday night at prime time there were several tables empty. Perhaps it is the economy. I was able to walk in without a reservation and was accomodated without trouble, as my previous plans had changed at the last minute. My meal was roughly $150-$160 all inclusive. I would return, if I am in the Bay Area again soon.
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