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Gramercy? Craft? craftsteak? None of the above?


Jeffo
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I love Tom Collichio's "Think Like a Chef" cookbook and have enjoyed watching him on Top Chef. Seems like a straight shooter (I especially like his most recent blog entry, in which he basically says he thought Dave should have been the one to go). But I digress...

Never having been to one of TC's restaurants, I was thinking an upcoming trip to NYC might be the perfect opportunity. But which one? Or is there a better choice than any of Tom's places? Keep in mind I'm dining solo, which may eliminate Craft, based on what I've read.

Let's hear it, TC fans!

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Like most places, Craftbar is very welcoming of singles dining at the bar, or was when I was there a few years ago.

I assume Craftbar is operating there?

Edited by herbacidal (log)

Herb aka "herbacidal"

Tom is not my friend.

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I'm not sure if Gramercy Tavern is 100 percent completely owned by Tom Colicchio. I think Danny Meyer is the majority owner. Tom is a minority partner.

http://www.ushgnyc.com/

That being said if I had to choose a Colicchio establishment I would chose Craft. I think Gramercy is an excellent restaurant, however, and completely different restaurant concept entirely.

Edited by Jason Perlow (log)

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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My vote goes to Craft, without a doubt. Craftsteak is like Craft, with mostly meat, cooking far below the left of Craft. Ingredients are always top-notch at any Collichio restaurant, though. If you're a huge meat-eater, Craftsteak is an attractive option. Grass-fed, corn-fed, 28 day, 42 day, wagyu, Hawaiian, etc... so much steak, all with varying flavor nuances. It's a fun time, and you're sure to see some celebrities with the restaurant just opening. I dined with Thomas Keller the other night (by dined, I mean, we were in the same restaurant at the same time :) )

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You can't actually go wrong at any of his restaurants - they're all good, but for different things. It almost certainly doesn't make sense to go to Craft as well as Craftsteak, but almost any other combination of choices (including 'wichcraft) would be worthwhile. Also, if you want to try something very similar, but a little easier to get into, you might want to check out Hearth. Marco Canora was the chef at Craft for a long time, and a lot of his dishes are very similar to those served by Colicchio.

I want pancakes! God, do you people understand every language except English? Yo quiero pancakes! Donnez moi pancakes! Click click bloody click pancakes!

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if you're eating solo craftsteak has two bars - the main bar and the raw bar where you could dine - and it has the built-in entertainment of watching the action in the wine vault. and right now it probably makes for better people watching. plus if you want to split your meal up you can start at the lounge at morimoto across the street and then end with the chocolate and rum tasting at the bar at del posto next door while getting an education in contemporary restaurant design while you're at it. otherwise, I'm not a craft fan but the atmosphere is intimate and the quality excellent at hearth.

Edited by adamru (log)
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craft is overpriced.  craftbar just isn't that good (but easy to get a table).

go to gramercy and eat at the bar.  best value, best food, best atmosphere, best cocktails.

We ate at Gramercy in January and it was as good a meal/service/ attention to detail/creative food as I have ever had. As a single you can eat at the bar--we started there for a cocktail while waiting for our table. I made reservations a month in advance.

Cooking is chemistry, baking is alchemy.

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craft is overpriced.  craftbar just isn't that good (but easy to get a table).

go to gramercy and eat at the bar.  best value, best food, best atmosphere, best cocktails.

We ate at Gramercy in January and it was as good a meal/service/ attention to detail/creative food as I have ever had. As a single you can eat at the bar--we started there for a cocktail while waiting for our table. I made reservations a month in advance.

Every meal I've had at Gramercy hit the mark dead on. It is a great restaurant.

That said, if you've been there a few times, particularly if you've had the tasting menu more than once... you start to wonder why there is always the pork belly, the this lamb, or the that. Nonetheless, I have never had anything less than a great meal and have always enjoyed truly outstanding service.

Not to mention that I absolutely love their cheese service. I recently went to Gramercy, Daniel, and Alain Ducasse on successive nights, had cheese at each one, and have to say that the Tavern was by a long shot the best of the lot. Many restaurants seem to only offer cheese as a compulsory side note, but at Gramercy they elevate it to a main event. I can think of few restaurants that deliver equal or better cheese service and I've seen none that did so with the pride and elegance with which it is done at the Tavern.

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I must agree with the eating at the bar angle. If you can't sit at the bar have a cocktail of Jim Meehans' (SP) before you eat.

EDIT to agree with FRESHHERBS.

Edited by Alchemist (log)

A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

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