|The food rivals the view|
Guardian Lifestyles Editor
Published: Jun 12, 2012
According to Jay Z and Alicia Keys, New York is a concrete jungle where dreams are made and where you feel brand new. It’s also a city where most celebrity chefs have at least one restaurant so the food scene is amazing. The haute cuisine shows not only traditional French influences, but also employs techniques and ingredients beloved in Asian, European, Latin American and Middle Eastern cooking. No matter what type of food you’re craving in New York City, you can rest assured that you can find the perfect place to eat.
With this in mind, my head was swirling with thoughts of where to dine on a recent visit — Aquavit which is co-owned by Marcus Samuelsson; Aureole owned by Charlie Palmer; Jean Georges owned by Jean-Georges Vongerichten; per se owned by Thomas Keller; Restaurant Daniel owned by Daniel Boulud; WD-50 owned by Wyle Dufresne; Le Bernardin owned by Eric Ripert. The choices … the choices … the choices … and so many restaurants offering delicious food!
In the end, I chose a restaurant for a special dinner based on two things — it was at the 49th floor of a building and the restaurant revolved which would allow my husband and I to enjoy the cityscape while dining. It was called The View and it sat atop the Marriott Marquis hotel. It wasn’t a celebrity-chef owned restaurant or anything. But this was New York City, so you would be hard-pressed to find a restaurant that serves sub-par food.
The view was actually a sight to behold as we dined into the fading evening light looking out at the Chrysler Building, the Empire State Building, Times Square and the Hudson River; the big question was whether the food would be able to rival the view.
We were surprised to find that a three-course prix fixe meal was set at $79 and we had fantastic offerings from which to choose — quail, foie gras, braised short ribs, duck breast, roast salmon, filet mignon, rack of lamb, grilled rib eye and a decadent dessert menu that offered tempting treats like a crème brulee, caramel nut tart and apricot ice cream trio, New York cheesecake of course, strawberry panna cotta and a dark chocolate pate. We got to choose an appetizer, entrée and dessert. That certainly did not sound too bad, but the proof had to be in the taste.
I ordered the grilled quail with honey almond goat cheese, fig compote, frisee and sherry vinaigrette, while my husband had the heirloom tomato salad with goat cheese, plums, cucumbers, micro basil and white balsamic vinaigrette. And as we both are foie gras lovers, we both ordered the foie gras duo of seared foie gras with plum compote and a snipped salad and a foie gras mousse. It added a couple more dollars onto the bill, but who cared —this was of course foie gras.
My grilled quail appetizer to say the least was simply divine — tender quail, honey-sweetened creamy goat cheese with a slight crunch from the almonds, with delicious fig compote … perfect. That was a delicious start to the meal.
The foie gras duo sent me into another stratosphere literally. The seared foie gras was buttery and delicious and the mousse just sent the dish over the top. Delicious!
And of course I ordered my roasted salmon with Israeli couscous with ratatouille and a lemon-parsley emulsion medium rare and it was served up perfect. The fat piece of center cut salmon was so silky and buttery that my only regret was that I literally could not finish the dish.
My husband’s rack of lamb (cooked to a perfect medium) with white bean ragu, mustard greens and thyme lamb jus was also delicious.
No matter how stuffed we were, dessert was coming our way, and I could not pass on the crème brulee, caramel nut tart and apricot ice cream trio. Thank goodness they were miniatures, so I dug in. My husband opted for cheesecake and fresh marinated strawberries. Dessert was a perfect ending to a perfect meal.
Actually, while The View wasn’t a restaurant owned by one of those celebrity chefs, the meal in my husband’s words was “one of the best he’d ever had.” And I must admit it was very good.
The restaurant I chose simply because of its view and the fact that it rotated, did not disappoint. Actually it was as I was dining that I found out that The View was OpenTable.com Diner’s Choice winner for 2012. Next time I’m in the city that’s a concrete jungle where dreams are made and where you can feel brand new, The View will be a must do. And for all you die-hard New York City fans, the next time you’re there, make sure you check it out. You will not be disappointed, the meal certainly rivals the view.