This time en route to board the Crystal Symphony for a short cruise from New York to Halifax, I planned a two night stop-over in New York for dining and theatre. Despite the limited time I managed to enjoy several excellent restaurant meals and three shows.
The Capital Grille - NY- Time Life Building
120 W 51st Street (between 6 and 7th Ave)
PH: (212) 246-0154 or reserve online
For the first pre-show dinner of my 2014 Spring New York Stopover I decided to try The Capital Grille. About a twenty minute walk from my hotel, it was just a couple of blocks away from the Eugene O'Neill Theatre where I was going to see The Book of Mormon.
We were seated promptly and water and drinks offered. I regretted that had forgotten to bring my small flashlight for help reading menus in poor light but as it turned out, after hearing the night's special dishes I decided to try them rather than battle with reading the menu.
DB Bistro Moderne (212) 391-2400or book online 55 W 44th Street New York, NY10036
For an early lunch before heading off to the 2 PM show of Kinky Boots, we decided to try DB Bistro Moderne. I had read about the famous DB Burger that incorporated foie gras and truffle but I had had a latish breakfast and the thought of a burger was just too daunting. So I decided to take up the offer of one of my co-diners to have a taste of her burger and instead opted for the Alsatian Tarte Flambée.
I had dinner one evening at Hakkasan in London. I loved the food there, only bemoaning the fact that as I was dining on my own, I could not taste more than a couple of dishes, but they served a soft shell crab preparation that I thought was the best I had ever tasted.
630 Ninth Avenue (cross street 45th)
New York, NY 10036
Ph: (212) 333-2323 or Reserve online
On my way back to the hotel after picking up theatre tickets at the box office, I passed a plethora of eating establishments from pizzerias to fine dining. The menu outside Marseille caught my eye and I decided to drop in for a light lunch.
Vienna may be variously termed the City of Music, the City of Dreams or the City of Waltz, but it most definitely merits the title of City of Fabulous Food and coffees. In a short visit one can only touch the surface of the restaurant, cafe and coffeehouse scene but I certainly got a taste, so to speak, of the overall food scene, and I did not have a single bad dining experience.
After classes at the Tanzschule, four of us took a walk to find a nearby place for lunch. We found a table at the Gustl-Bauer Wirsthaus. In my quest to understand the many terms used here for restaurant, I found that Wirsthaus like Wirstschaft means inn.
Anyway I was interested to see that they offered gravlax - home made pickled salmon served with mustard sauce and pickled onions so I could not resist trying it. Delicious though a bit too salty for me.
Restaurant Koenig von Ungarn, im Mozarthaus, Schulerstrasse 10
For our last evening in Vienna we chose to have supper just up the road from our hotel, at the Restaurant Koenig von Ungarn. It was located right near the building where Mozart lived for three years from 1784 to 1787 during which time he wrote Le Nozze di Figaro.
For starters we respectively chose the Erdapfelsuppen (creamof potato soup) and the Pflücksalate (green salad with fried sheep's cheese).
As I was going through my photographs of chocolates, pastries and street food from my Vienna visit, it struck me how I am always more drawn to savory delicacies than sweet. To the bemusement of my friends and family, I always choose charcuterie over chocolate or appetizers over dessert. Easily distracted from the task at hand, uploading photos to my posts, I wondered how contemporary knowledge about taste and taste preferences has advanced from the basic information I learned in first year physiology eons ago. We were taught that there were four primary taste senses - sweet, sour, salt and bitter, and that the distribution of taste reception in the tongue was bitter at the back, salt and sour along the sides and sweet at the tip. My first idle foray via Google into the matter of taste introduced me to the fifth taste sense, umami - and got me sidetracked into reading about the genetics of taste. Hmmm.. maybe I can finally understand my gustatory peculiarities. It's not me that hates cilantro and olives, and loves prosciutto and salamis - it's my genes.
Here follows some of my non-restaurant focused food experiences in Vienna.