>> Thursday, October 8, 2009

Let me preface this review by saying that it was my last Friday night in New York and I really wanted to have a special night out and eat someplace I had never eaten. So I met up with my friend Maggie and we were all set to go to La Esquina. Upon my arrival I received several furious texts from Maggie telling me how rude the staff was and that there was no way we were going to eat there on my last Friday. I quickly agreed and we headed east, further into NoLita (North of Little Italy). It's here that we came across Public. I had eaten at Public for brunch and had a fabulous time so I knew dinner would be just as delightful.

We walk into the converted warehouse space (which we later learned everything in the restaurant is meant for public use, thus why they give you pencils and soap) and are greeted by the hostess. Now, showing up on a Friday night without a reservation is about as Taboo as it comes in the New York dining scene, however I just knew that I would be lucky this night. We charm the hostess who finally agrees to seat us, but ONLY because it's my last night. 

Starving we ordered bread immediately and sipped on delicious cocktails. The server came back and it was go time. We ordered:

  • Cauliflower and gorgonzola soup with pickled bosc pear relish and annatto oil
  • Spiced Berkshire pork loin, warm guindilla chili and spaetzle salad, chamomile poached apricots and pistachio nuts
  • Australian barramundi with vanilla celeriac puree, braised garlic greens, verjus and muscat grape sauce

The cauliflower soup was so smooth and velvety that I had a hard time believe that it was cauliflower at all. It seem utterly impossible that someone could get cauliflower that smooth. The pear relish and annaotto oil gave the dish depth and the gorgonzola was ever so subtle in the background. A beautiful start.

Our entrees came out a little later than we would have liked (I mean we were starving), but sincerely they were worth it. Maggie ordered the pot and let me just say it had so many flavors it was hard to nail down which on I liked the most, the spicy/sweet thing is always a big hit with me. I ordered the barramundi. I love a good crispy skin on a fish, and I firmly believe that you have to have good crispy skin to have a truly amazing fish. There, I said it. Anyways, the crispy, salty skin contrasted against the smooth, sweet vanilla celeriac puree was a dream. I cleaned my plate in about five minutes.

I loved everything about our evening; the staff, the food and most of all the company. We finished our night we a free glass of champagne and headed out for my last night out on the town.
This really was the perfect meal to end on J

210 Elizabeth Street
New York, NY 10012


annie October 10, 2009 at 2:52 PM  

girl, I don't know if I would've made the same choice. La Esquina = amazing!!!!!


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