This past week I spent a few days working in New York City. Of course, if I am working in NYC, I want to take advantage of dining out in the Big Apple. In just a few short days, there were many ups, both with work and with dining and just one down. The down is the biggest disappointment I think I have ever shared on my blog. Are you ready for it? Batman vs. Superman is not good – at all. Not I wish I got that 2.5 hours of my life back bad but pretty much up there… I am gutted. The only saving grace of being stuck in a packed movie theater in Time Square, with a bunch of teenagers, on opening night of this movie is Henry Cavill. It’s damn lucky he is so disturbingly hot. Is that seriously not the most negative thing you have ever read on Life-Food-Wine? Okay, British public outcry over. Let’s get to the food.
On Thursday evening my friend, Lauren and I had a delightfully indulgent evening enjoying the Prix Fixe menu at Sutton Inn. Everything about Sutton Inn is simply superb. Food, especially the mushroom risotto, service and the fact that you can get a fine dining 3-course meal experience with no scrimping or feeling like you are a second class citizen during Restaurant Week. Plus its $45 and tips are not accepted. I loved this little place with its church archway into a bar at the back of the restaurant.
Friday evening had us joining my NY friends, Stacey and Eric in order to dine at the much talked about Empellon Cocina, a Mexican-inspired restaurant in the East Village. This place is by far one of the most food adventurous restaurants I have been to in quite some time. You must try the Fried Oyster Tacos and Spanish Red Prawns. Oh and if you are a tequila fan, the Classic Margarita is fantastic. Although I could only handle one.
Now to the main part of this write up. Artisanal Fromagerie & Bistro – a restaurant homage to cheese and all its wonder!
On Saturday I joined Stacey and Eric for brunch at this icon of cheese heaven located on Park and 32nd Street. This space is a loud bustling Parisian Brasserie, which embodies the kitschy side of French restaurants with mismatched chairs and braces wearing waiters, while not going to far that you feel like you are in a theme park. I loved it the second I walked in.
In addition to a full cheese shop right in the restaurant, they also have a Cheese Cave (La Cave), which can seat a cozy foursome among the stinky cheese fridges. It’s so cute if you can handle the strong smell. It definitely wouldn’t bother me.
While listening to live soft jazz, we perused the traditional offerings of a typical Parisian brasserie menu. To start we ordered some puffy, cheesy gougéres and sugary beignets.
For my brunch I picked the Croque Madame. I am not kidding when I share it was by far the best Croque Madame I have ever tasted. Heavy with strong gruyere and thick cut salty ham and just the right amount of béchamel. A perfectly cooked soft yoke egg crowned this wonderful dish. Fantastique!
Stacey had the lobster omelet and while she said it was nice, it didn’t rock her world as far as brunch options. She picked at the rest of the gougéres savoring the cheesy flavor with memories of a gougére cooking class.
Eric had the Truffle Eggs Benedict saying it was truly enjoyable and something he would order again.
Service is top notch and this brunch for me made for the perfect Saturday morning/early afternoon before a flight back to Boston.
Next time I am in NYC, I am heading back for dinner and especially the raved about Fondue or perhaps just a whole dining experience of cheese and of course wine.