It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Did you read the title or did you sing it?  I heard the song in my head as I typed it.  We’re entering a heat wave here in New York that marks 150 days until Christmas and 131 days until the first night of Chanukah.  So why is this such a great time of the year?  It’s NYC Summer Restaurant Week!  I’m getting the strangest feeling of déjà vu as I put this post together and realized I used the exact same wording for NYC Winter Restaurant Week.

Restaurant Week began last week Monday, July 20, and runs through Friday, August 14.  I already have one RW meal under my belt and that was dinner at Scarpetta.  The food was out. of. this. world.  My meal began with the creamy polenta with fricassee of truffled mushrooms.  Holy wow!  This dish was hands down the best dish of the night.  My meal continued with the branzino (two pieces of fish) with white asparagus vinaigrette, bluefoot mushrooms, and purslane.  The leftovers made for a delicious lunch the next day since I couldn’t finish the dish.  My meal concluded with the nutella mousse with hazelnut feuilletine, candied hazelnuts, and vanilla gelato.  I desperately wanted a cocktail with my meal but not so desperate as to fork over almost $20 for one.

I have 4 upcoming RW meals:

  • Brunch at All’Onda: Executive Chef Chris Jaeckle used to work at Ai Fiori, Morimoto, and Eleven Madison Park, 3 beyond outstanding restaurants.  With a resume like that, how can I possibly skip All’Onda?  From the posted brunch menu I’ll definitely order the Polpetti (veal meatballs) for my first course.  My second course is a toss up between the fritatta, risi e bisi, and eggs a piacere.  Third course will either be the olive oil cake for the ricotta gelato or the bellini sundae for the prosecco sorbet.
  • Dinner at Perilla: One of my favorite restaurants in NYC, I’m going for RW dinner for the chilled cucumber soup, roasted farm raised mushrooms (i’m dying to eat the bamboo risotto), and either dessert (most likely the ricotta pound cake, the lemon verbena mousse lost me at gingersnap cookies).
  • Dinner at JoJo: My friend asked for a restaurant near David Burke’s Fishtail, which I’m not a fan of.  Studying the region on Google Maps very closely led me to this Jean-Georges Vongerichten restaurant.  The RW menu can be found here.  Everything sounds amazing.  I’ll decided what to eat when the menu is in my hands at the restaurant.
  • Dinner at DBGB Kitchen and Bar: I’ve been wanting to eat at DBGB since it opened, but the RW menu has never been one I could try; it was loaded with pork-based dishes.  This time around, there are other options.  As of now, I’m leaning towards the Melon Gazpacho, cavatelli with duck confit (one of two ways I’ll take my duck), and the vanilla cheesecake.

Follow me on Twitter as I gorge myself on Restaurant Week meals.  You’ll find out when I’m going to each restaurant and my thoughts on the food:

Which restaurants am I missing?  What dishes do you suggest?  Let me know your RW wins and losses in the comments.

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