NYC – 2/5/17 – Fowler and Wells

I thought that Super Bowl Sunday was the perfect day to get into an otherwise perpetually crowded restaurant.  But after criss crossing the city from White Gold and Flora, both of which were closed, I realized we would have to resort to a hotel restaurant.  [Side note that if you are randomly closing post it on your website or social media!]  So we headed downtown for drinks in the beautiful lobby of the Beekman and dinner at Fowler and Wells.  It was absolutely delicious and an easy choice over Augustine next door for future visits to this area.

marinated fluke with radishes and finger limes

chestnut agnolotti with celery root and black truffles

Embarrassingly I cannot remember entree descriptions!

Lamb

NYC – 2/2/17 – Upland

After having a terrible service experience at Upland soon after it opened I vowed not to visit again.  But needing something in the area with last minute availability I gave it a second chance.  The second time was a charm and it couldn’t have been better.


hamachi crudo, radish, yuzu kosho vinaigrette & red sorrel

beef tartare, black trumpet mushroom, puffed farro, anchovy & egg yolk

sausage & kale pizza

little gem salad, avocado, cucumber, ricotta salata & walnut vinaigrette

Chicago – 1/29/17 – the Bristol

The Bristol is one of the first places I dined at when I started making frequent trips to Chicago many years ago.  Happily it is still as good as it was back then and has a really excellent brunch.  Just as the raviolo is a must-order at dinner, do not miss the cinnamon roll at brunch.  It’s as dangerous as the Moscow mules.


Chicago – 1/28/17 – Alinea Kitchen Table

There are a multitude of reasons that Alinea continues to be my favorite restaurant. As many times as I have been there I am always completely surprised by something new. And I always think back to my first visit quite a long time ago which was the first time I dined alone at a ‘nice’ restaurant. I was so nervous that my hand shook until I had finished my initial glass of champagne. But the experience was perhaps the beginning of my career as a ‘professional’ in conquering a very long tasting menu and I have never felt uncomfortable dining alone since.

I am not sure that I will be able to return to the dining room after this dinner at the kitchen table. I saw the space on my last visit but seeing it and sitting in it are quite different. Just completely fantastic especially with a great group of friends. I very much enjoyed again the dishes that I had previously – especially the scallop, corn, butter that I want several bowls of.  While it is not a substitute for black truffle explosion, the gruyere/black truffle/pumpernickel was delicious and filled the void.  And perhaps my favorite of the night was the very understated parmesan/pea/jamon iberico.  Until next time….




osetra, king crab, condiments

quince, parmesan, date

scallop, corn, butter

cornbread, nori

cider, orange, maple

yuzu

parmesan, pea, jamon iberico


kuzu, pompano, shellfish

pork belly, curry, banana

rosemary, hamachi, kombu

blueberry, lapsang souchong, maitake


mastic, concord

*foie

gruyere, black truffle, pumpernickel

short rib, bitter cocoa, cassis

wagyu, rice, myoga

sweet potato, chocolate, miso

bubble gum, cake, banana



chocolate, cherry, bourbon


sesame, brown butter, gold

Chicago – 1/27/17 – Roister and the Loyalist

Roister
When I finally get caught up on my blog I may need to stop the Roister posts as there will be too many.  I feel guilty typing it but we may have had the whole menu x2 (some photos missing) plus a few off-the-menu extras (thank you Chef!).  My previous go-to lunch spots are out the window.



Hushpuppies, corn crema, sour corn, manchego


Hushpuppies, corn crema, sour corn, manchego

Roasted beets, endive tangerine, blue cheese

Chicken noodle soup, mirepoix, meatball, soft cooked egg

Smoked oysters, garlic butter, breadcrumbs

Anson mills grits, key west pink shrimp, crab curry, thai basil

Fried chicken sandwich, sunchoke hot sauce, chamomile mayo

Biscuits and gravy, hearth roasted eggs, green tomato ragout, swiss

Loyalist
Love the people, service, and food.  But I must admit that I feel the burger was overhyped.  Perhaps the fault of my Facebook friends and not the burger.


Winter squash, burrata, pickled honeycrisp

The Loyalist cheeseburger & fries

Apple upside-down cake, sunflower anglaise, creme fraiche

New Orleans – 1/19/17 – Latitude 29 and N7

Latitude 29
The perfect start to a long weekend in NOLA!

N7
I have to start with a disclaimer as the photos do not to justice to N7.  It is a bit off the beaten path and our uber driver was somewhat confused.  Behind a tall fence is the most adorable outdoor space which is the perfect location for a dinner with a group of friends.  Loved everything about this place, but like the band that is fantastic live and not so great recorded, N7 is far better first hand.


sake cured salmon tartine, goat cheese, cilantro

escargot tempura, garlic cream sauce

avocado salad, wasabi dressing

can to table

hamachi carpaccio

duck a l’orange

New Orleans – 1/21/17 – Maypop and August

Maypop
Such a great space totally different from Willa Jean next door but with the same fantastic light making it a perfect brunch spot.  A really great meal with flavors that I tend to gravitate towards.

The Pom Dot Com – gin, aperol, green chartreuse, cava


Chilled buckwheat noodle salad – roasted apple, jumbo lump crab, spicy pickled mirliton, green szechuan

Crispy fried P&J oysters – bourbon barrel soy mash aioli, idiazabal cheese, spicy cucumber

Whole roasted fairytale pumpkin – shaved apple, housemade pancetta, roti bread

Charred lamb with roti


August
I love this dining room and it still is my favorite in New Orleans although the evening lighting is not conducive to photos. A perfect last meal to this trip.

amuse

salad of heirloom beet and apple, bruleed goat cheese, pecan

foie gras prepared three ways

Louisiana stuffed blue crab – andouille, shrimp, black garlic

grilled sea scallop, parsley root, local citrus, pig’s ear

pavlova