Le Cirque – Restaurant Review

>> Friday, January 23, 2009

As I write this I must say that nothing I could ever pen (or type rather) would give justice to the dining experience I had at Le Cirque. I was completely awed by everything that happened at my lunch during restaurant week (I mean seriously how else am I going to "afford" these places). This is one of those New York establishments that just oozes elegance, class and true fine dining.

Located at the Bloomberg building in midtown, this is a close walk from my work and I met up with my dear friends, improv expert Marcy and co-worker Jackie. Without a doubt the first thing that you will notice upon arrival is this gorgeous, unique building, a glass masterpiece in the heart of bustling midtown. Once you enter, you are swept away by the beauty inside; tall ceilings with fabric draped everywhere makes you feel like you are in the heart of a circus tent and unique art lining the back walls transports you to Paris immediately.

We are seated promptly and begin to dissect the menu. Having eaten here during last year's restaurant week, we knew everything was excellent and we were all in for a special treat.

Here's what we started with:
  • Chestnut Pappardelle with veal ragout, wild mushrooms and candied rosemary (this is what I had – it obviously left an impression)
  • Salad Le Cirque with mixedgreens and pomegranate
  • Butternut Squash Veloute with cotecchino and fennel mousseline
Everything was just outstanding. The pasta was obviously freshly made and the butternut squash soup was so velvety I just wanted to curl up with it. The salad was fine, nothing spectacular, but good nonetheless (sorry Jackie!).
Now for the entrées…

Cobia with a shallot crust sweet and sour beets
  • Chicken with peppers basquaise, broccoli rabe and panisse
Marcy and I both got the Cobia and while not exactly flaky, the flavors made up for it. The crust was crunchy and sweet and added a really nice texture to the meaty fish. Combined with beets, this whole dish had a really nice balance of flavor and an overall light, airy, feeling.

We finished off with some lovely desserts, Marcy and Jackie the chocolate fondant with raspberry sorbet which they tell me was delicious…I didn't get to try. I got the citrus parfait with blood orange, tangelo and lemon and it was quite refreshing and delicious.

To top things off Sirio Maccioni (the founder) was there! Walking around and talking with the guests. I freaked. I totally, 110% freaked out! I wanted to get a picture with him, but he was talking in Italian and I didn't want to interrupt if it was something important…

I am so thankful that I got to eat at one of the best restaurants in Manhattan for the second time and had just as pleasant of an experience. I will say this, Le Cirque is not for the faint of heart; while there is something on the menu for everyone, true foodies will love the unique flavor profiles and combinations as well as the overall dining experience. One of my best to date (and the company wasn't too bad either!).

Le Cirque
151 E 58th
New York, NY 10022
Salad Le Cirque

Chicken Dish

Citrus Parfait


Jackie January 23, 2009 at 1:33 PM  

you can't put a piece of gooey chocolate and sorbet in front of me and ask me to share. seeing the founder was awesome.. i just love this place :)

Renee Barone January 26, 2009 at 12:04 PM  

I know I agree. It was silly of me to think that anyone would be able to withstand the intoxicating smells of warm gooey chocolate.

Next year I will be getting that!

Unknown March 14, 2009 at 12:57 PM  

I just ate there yesterday, ordering of Restaurant's Week menu. Everything was delicious! I had the salad "le cirque" which was almost a meal by itself; beautifully presented and delightfully fresh! The veal breast was tender and tasty combined with the pear. Creme brulee was wonderful although I do prefer it served slightly warmer. The service was impeccable and welcoming. Can't wait to go back.


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