28 March 2008

a long weekend, a week of brooklyn restaurants

Enjoying a Good Friday off & an Easter dinner in Massachusetts- I spent the weekend with the Pugs and enjoying great meals. Vadim and I opted for Sushi at Tamari on Friday afternoon. I highly recommend their lunch specials. The Beef Negamaki is completely heavenly as well the yellow tail scallion roll- something to write home about. The portions are generous, deeply satisfying and well balanced in flavors. Try the crunch roll! (It's a Slope favorite). They have a great happy hour as well- Buy one, get one house sake until 8pm!

I should also admit- that for whatever reason I felt compelled to take the Jackie's Fifth Amendment plunge. A thoroughly savage dive at 7th St and Fifth Ave in the Slope. I'm yet to see the establishment closed. The same two people are always there: arguing. The scent of urine is beyond comprehension. I am quite positive that the regular patrons are either predominately homeless or simply do not need a home- (because they never leave). Swaggering over the juke box- listening to over-played, tired songs-- and suffering through another beer with a side of tomato juice, "Great neighborhood. I will never leave, Great place, I love this bar, great neighborhood," The bartender stares at us- wondering who we are and why exactly we came through the Jackie's Fifth doors... Nice folks, cheap drinks. Washed my hands several times- don't need to do it again.

Later in the day (Post Jackie's Fifth & Tamari) Vadim and I met a former coworker of mine: Michael Anthony, and his girlfriend, Brandy Hamrick- for dinner a Mitali. We ordered a tremendous amount of the best Indian I have ever had. I'm generally very particular about the preparation of my meat, and find that I am not so much a fan of the way it's prepared in this variety of cuisine. Mitali proved me wrong. The curried lamb dishes superb. The chicken divine. The textures parfait. The ingredients expertly crafted. The banana fritters incredible! Brandy and I agreed the Spinach was lovely, but we weren't crazy about the meat samosas. I wonder if the quality and precision was increased based on the location of the restaurant. There must be at least 20 Indian restaurants lined up- one after the other and practically on top of each other in just this block of the East Village. More competition- *golf clap*

Last weekend was:

The ideal precursor to Brooklyn's notorious RESTAURANT WEEK. Tragically, I didn't get started until Wednesday. Brittain and I met at BAR TABAC for a glass of wine and the soft rhythm of the French bartender's jovial murmurs. After we finished our red, we walked over to Jolie to meet a collection of her college friends for the Three Course Prix Fixe Dinner. Beautiful company, flawless service. A satisfying wine list- We enjoyed a few bottles: Sicilian red and a Pinot Gris...

Brittain and I must have similar tastes in food- we both chose the Scallop
soufflé with grapefruit and greens wrapped in a smoked salmon. Delightful, fresh. An ideal first course. I was a bit skeptical about scallops in a soufflé form, but I must admit the flavors mingled beautifully.

For our second course, we both chose the Pan Seared cod with a grapefruit beurre blanc, broccoli rabe and mashers. Delightful. The beurre blanc was the ideal match for the palate. We then partook in a white chocolate mousse with warm rhubarb ribbons, poppy seeds and fresh strawberries. I would absolutely return to Jolie again. They have a regular three course Prix Fixe offered on Mondays for 25 dollars. You can also take advantage of their Tuesday Wine specials and Wednesday Oyster specials for "Lady's Night." I am also curious about their Sunday Fondue Savoyarde for $19.

We continued the week of wonderful restaurants at Le Petite Marche in Brooklyn Heights. Unfortunately, Brittain couldn't make it, but we had a good group of people to enjoy the Prix Fixe. We started with Ciabatta with garlicy hummus and a lovely Malbec. Followed by Escargot, Casaer salad- (spicy and salty with garlic and anchovy), and a ginger carrot soup with an herbed creme fraiche. For our main courses- we chose the Pork Tenderloin with curried sweet potato mashers and the Pan Seared Mackerel with asparagus. As dessert negotiated its way into our minds...I decided on the chocolate-banana bread pudding with cinnamon ice cream (I offered my ice cream to Ali, she furnished me the whipped cream from her warm apple crisp). A delicious, but slightly too heavy meal. I definitely prefer the portion size and balance of Jolie to Le Petit Marche.

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