Recently a friend and I volunteered for an event similar to Eat Out NY except not sponsored by TONY. Volunteering entailed taking the day off from work, working through seven straight hours, and then being allowed to attend the event at no cost to us. I just wanted to share all the wonderful food we got to eat:
Kerry Heffernan of South Gate plates some more dishes- what a nice guy! He spoke briefly to us and was extremely friendly and kind.
South Gate’s offering- I didn’t catch sight of the description, but the orange carrot looking piece was actually carrot puree, delightfully sweet, blending nicely with the crab meat mixture.
I believe this was Matsuri’s offering of Kobe beef tataki; wonderfully soft and succulent. Lovely.
Peacock Alley- and oh my gosh by far my favorite savory dish of the night.
Unfortunately I bit into it before I remembered to take a picture, but this pork cheek was so soft and delicious, I would have turned right back around to scarf down a couple more, but my partner-in-crime reminded me that there were plenty more places to try that I should save some room for. Boo.
Thalassa’s offering, grilled octopus, wonderfully fresh and soft and yummy.
EN’s offering was more than a bit disappointing: shrimp puff. It tasted like a dim sum that I am no longer particularly fond of (but when I was a kid, sure): “jha ha yuen” or fried shrimp ball. But the shochu they were offering, which I didn’t take a picture of, was delicious (and the proprietor took a shot with us as I embarrassingly attempted to use what little Japanese I know: “Kampai!” and “Arigato!”, but he was very kind about it).
Fleur de Sel had two offerings, a slice of salmon wrapped around a creme fraiche and a grape-like fruit at one end; this was very refreshing and light.
I especially loved the presentation; this was one of the best of the night.
They also offered a chilled strawberry gazpacho with a drop of balsamic vinegar on top. I wasn’t too keen on it, as it didn’t have enough pop for me, but it was also very light.
Hudson Yards Catering offered a “quail egg in a hole, truffle cream and mache salad.”
One of the best offerings of the night. I loved the crispy bread and the slightly cooked quail egg yolk; the truffle cream’s earthiness played well with the overall mouth-feel as well.
Riingo’s spiced hiramasa with fennel and citrus was only so-so. The citrus did brighten up the whole dish, but there wasn’t quite enough to bring the whole dish to “Wow”.
Aquavit’s salmon ceviche with uni- I love uni. I thought the foam was a bit much, but otherwise, this was really good.
The French Culinary Institute’s scallop ceviche was delicious.
Public offered both a savory and a sweet dish: the savory, seen above, a marinated white sardine atop a quinoa puff. Good, but not transcendental.
The sweet dish, sour cherries atop a pavlova. I’m not a fan of sour cherries, but the pavlova was light and airy and just divine. I don’t think I’ve ever had one before, but I am going to start looking for these now… yum!
By far the most disappointing dish of the night, Morimoto’s “fishwich” fell far below my expectations. Perhaps that isn’t a fair assessment, as his is probably my favorite restaurant ever, but the “yellowtail pastrami”, which I had the fortune to try when Morimoto NYC first opened, was never a big hit with me. Add that to this version being over spiced, and the shiso slapped inside (I don’t like shiso [Japanese mint] whole)… the bread just being too hard to go well with the fish… it was a disaster all over. (And I didn’t get to take a picture with Morimoto because he kept disappearing! What gives?!)
Butternut squash soup with cream dollop and lobster hunks from… I will have to look this up; my dining companion decided that the lobster didn’t quite complement the sweetness of the butternut squash well and in fact, detracted from it. I wouldn’t disagree.
The really pervy chef of Public House, who hit on both my friend and I while we talked to him, and 15 minutes later, forgot who we were. Gross. (He asked us for our t-shirts, and then told us “Make sure you don’t wash it before you give it to me!” even though he claimed they were for his daughters. GROSS.)
Public House’s jalapeno & duck confit mac&cheese was absolutely scrumptious! Spicy with a burn that ended just as it got too hot for me to bear, and the right level of creaminess. Delicious. Presentation sucked but I guess how pretty can you make mac & cheese? I’m here for the food mostly anyway, not to eat with my eyes but with my mouth.
Oceana’s dessert offering of mousse, espresso granite, and I don’t know what else was really great with the contrasting levels of smooth and creamy, along with the icy grains of the espresso granite. Yum.
I didn’t get a picture but we also tried Wine Cellar Sorbets’ Riesling flavor, having previously tried their pinot noir, champagne, and sangria flavors. I think I like pinot noir the best so far…
Last but definitely not least… Red Man Raven’s delectable red velvet cupcakes!!! This is the best red velvet cake you’ll ever and I mean ever consume. If you’re into that sort of thing. Dense, moist, and the frosting bit was not overly sweet nor cloying nor thick nor gross, just perfect. Ahh… heaven must have these for three meals a day.
All in all, a great time and experience, and I will definitely be trying some of these restaurants now. I am extremely disappointed, however, to see that the pork cheek is not on Peacock Alley’s menu…