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lunch prix fix

American Traditional/ lunch/ nyc

Nougatine: Delicious Lunch Prix Fix

Prior to a NY Philharmonic concert, I decided to take my mom to Nougatine which is the front dining area of Jean Georges. We were able to eat a 3-course prix fix menu for $32, which is reasonably priced considering the level of the food and service that we experienced there. Good food, great company, and overall positive experience. Now for the food porn…

For the first course I got a Peekytoe crab cake with celeriac Remoulade, pink grapefruit and ginger. The crab cake had a good amount of actual crab in it and had a nice crust to it.

The salmon baked with lemon crumbs, sweet chili glaze, and swiss chard was well cooked. I particularly liked the lemon crumbs because it cut the sweet chili sauce and paired nicely with salmon as well.

The chocolate cake served with vanilla bean ice cream was rich and delicious. How can you go wrong with warm chocolate cake and vanilla ice cream?

I enjoyed my time at Nougatine. The waitstaff were attentive, the food was well seasoned, and the view was really nice (they’re located right by the entrance of Central Park). Their lunch menu is definitely worth it so make sure to check it out sometime if you have a nice lunch break.

Nougatine
1 Central Park West
New York, NY 10023
(212) 299-3900

Baked Goods/ French/ lunch/ nyc

Bouley: A Romantic Meal for the Money

Bouley is what I consider a romantic restaurant. Flowers are adorned on tables with the smells of fresh apples infiltrating the room. The waitstaff go around in a relaxed and whimsical fashion, carefully entering the conversations of their guests and gently placing your dishes onto the table. My co-worker and I decided to take a trip to Bouley to celebrate the end of a project, in hopes of partaking in their lunch special – $48 four-course tasting menu.

Bread! What a great start. One of the first things they brought out, and it was freshly baked from next door. HOW FRESH CAN IT GET? Nothing like soft and tender bread to start off a meal. It only makes you think about what other great dishes there are to come.

Jasmine tea-smoked Organic Scottish Salmon with local corn puree, running beans, and toasted fava beans as shown above. Can we say “lick the plate”? It was well cooked and I felt that the ingredients really highlighted the salmon. I didn’t taste the jasmine tea but the other components of the dish provided me enough satisfaction.

All-natural Pennsylvania chicken with blue kale, black truffle gnocchi, Vermont chanterelles, spring chive, and hyssop sauce is pictured above. The chicken was well done, and the gnocchi was surprisingly light.

Hot caramelized Anjou pear with Valrhona chocolate, biscuit breton, hot toffee sauce, rosemary and tahitian vanilla ice cream is shown above. Being a fan of warm / cold desserts I couldn’t help myself in finishing nearly the whole thing (I was ridiculously full after my meal). Chocolate + fruit is always a good call, and combining it with the tahitian and rosemary ice cream cooled it down and complimented the overtly sweet flavors.

And to top it all off, chocolate and petit fours to finish everything (as though you didn’t have enough).   Bouley was a magical experience, full of elegant and delicious well-prepared food. Everything looks thought out and is thought out. Granted dinner might be quite a spend but this is definitely a thumbs up for a fairly priced lunch deal. Definitely worth a try, and a highly recommended date place. I am swooned.

Bouley
163 Duane Street, New York NY 10013 (map)
212-693-7480
davidbouley.com

American Nouveau/ lunch/ nyc

Eleven Madison Park: $28 Lunch is as Good as It Gets

Good food deals in New York, does that really exist? Yes, I am a telling you that there are reasonable lunch deals at some fine restaurants in the city that are worth trying out. Eleven Madison Park has been on my list, and since the dinner menu is usually expensive, eating lunch there is the best way to go for me. This is good news for the poor / price sensitive foodies out there, so read on.

Eleven Madison Park features a $28 two-course lunch prix fix menu. Even though that might not sound like a lot, with most fine dining restaurants they give you as much bread as you like AND bring amuse-bouche to start off your meals, so you are well covered. In fact, you can probably feel full on a two-course meal.

After quizzing the waiter with numerous questions about what things were, I was able to decide upon the perfect balance to create a surf and turf lunch.

The meal started off with an amuse-bouche; one of them was a foie gras macaron with apple mango chutney in the middle. Even though I am not usually a fan of foie gras, I actually enjoyed the macaron. It started with a salty flavor and progressively ended with a sweet tang. It was surprisingly pleasant to pop into your mouth, previewing the playful ingredient combinations that lay ahead.

This dish was wonderfully constructed, light and refreshing, perfect for springtime. The Balik Salmon was plated with pommes dauphine, frisée, and crème fraîche. I particularly liked the pomme dauphine because of its softness combined with the milky and smooth texture of the crème fraîche that perfectly complimented the smoky, silky salmon. They also placed some salmon roe within the frisée salad, a nice addition to the plate.

The cochon de lait, aka “pigs in milk” or “suckling pig”, was served with rhubarb, spring onion, and ice wine vinegar that poured onto your dish. They had small cuts of the different parts such as the crispy fatty belly. I felt that the rhubarb and ice wine vinegar provided a nice touch of sweetness that helped cut the fatty oily portions of the dish. The only unappetizing part was when I ate the bulb part of the spring onion, leaving me feeling like intense spicy and sharp flavors exploded in my mouth. Aside from that, it satisfied my pork craving.

Although I didn’t order this dish, it was still pretty to look at and worth noting. It is the Scottish Salmon Mi-Cuit. From a small bite I had, the fish was nicely cooked (maybe sous-vided?) and definitely gave the salmon a really silky and smooth texture.

I’m glad I went to Eleven Madison Park for lunch because at least I know that this isn’t just another hyped-up restaurant in Manhattan, and trust me, there are plenty of those. Perhaps one day I can return for dinner, see and taste more of their menu, and get a full dining experience. Until then, relatively cheap lunch prix fixes are the way to go.