New York City Restaurants

We can never stay away from New York City, even if we only pass through it for a few days. We recently stopped by for 2 plays and some food.

New York City Theater

  • Ain’t Too Proud to Beg: The Temptations. We enjoyed hearing the group’s incredible songs, listening to the harmonies and watching the moves. And it was fascinating to learn the back-set stories about the personalities of the members, the virtually inevitable strains that this type of life put on relations with colleagues and families and how, after replacing member after member, the group kept pumping out hit songs to become the Number One R&B group in history. But as enjoyable and as interesting as all of this was, the play seemed to lack the energy and we did not engage with it quite the way we did with Tina. We are glad we saw it, but in the end, it wasn’t among our favorites of the genre.
  • Betrayal is a revival of a Harold Pinter Play that pits husband vs wife vs. former best friend and best man. And all of this over an affair that lasted a mere six years. The primarily (but not exclusively) reverse chronology was somewhat disconcerting and the staging approach of having all three characters on stage when two are meeting and speaking of the other adds drama. It was Interesting for a show with no real plot, that was all about the interactions among the characters. But we didn’t find it especially compelling.

New York Restaurants

  • Alta Restaurant is in the Village. We were disappointed in the rather dry and tasteless lamb meatballs with red pepper and brown butter labneh. Fortunately, we enjoyed three other dishes: grilled wild shrimp with chorizo, garlic and sherry vinaigrette; a dessert of butterscotch budino with honey comb, candied lemon and chocolate ganache; and the favorite dish of the evening: braised rabbit loin with whipped lemon-parsnip and fried shallots. Our wine from the extensive, and relatively expensive Mediterranean-focused list, was a disappointingly fruitless 2015 Castillo di Nieve Barbaresco.
  • Sen Sakana was where we grabbed a light meal. We started with edamame, followed by a very good shrimp appetizer wrapped in potato threads with passion fruit vinaigrette and a disappointingly tasteless shrimp and crab gyoza with lime ponzu. Then onto three types of sashimi: maguro, unagi and madai (sea bream). Our sake was a pleasant, if not especially complex Soto Junmai.
  • 2nd Avenue Deli. Anytime we are in New York we have to get chopped liver and corned beef.  The chopped liver was delicious. Unfortunately, we didn’t feel that the corned beef  was especially memorable.
  • Todd English at the Plaza is where we had  very enjoyable meal that reprised a dish that we used to enjoy at an English restaurant from when we lived in Boston and one other guilty favorite. The venerable English dish was a prosciutto and fig flatbread.  The other dish was fried oysters with house-made tartar sauce. Both very good. Our wine was a 2017 Vermentino from LaPaltagota.
  • An’nam is a Vietnamese/Japanese restaurant where we both had trouble narrowing our selections down to the amount of food that we might actually be able to eat. We began with a pork and shrimp spring roll. While it was okay, we’ll stick with summer rolls. Next was a plentiful dish of shrimp tempura which was tasty but and too much breading for our tastes. Then we had a very good jumbo prawn dish (with an amazing amount of prawns)  in a tasty basic sauce that blended a bit of sweetness with heat that complemented the abundant prawns and the vegetables. Our wine was a pleasant, inexpensive 2016 Stefan Bauer “Wagram” Gruner Veltliner.

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