Posts Tagged With: Minetta Tavern

Minetta Tavern – Still Good, But…

Minetta Tavern - Pasta ZazaMinetta Tavern, one of New York’s most celebrated dining spots.  Home to one of New York’s most celebrated burgers, most celebrated steaks, and most celebrated “Pastas that are named after NBA great Zaza Pachulia”.  One of which wasn’t so great to us this past Sunday.

Zaza PachuliaPasta Za za was as good as ever, and the perfect “Carbonara” fix.  The longing intensified even more after having the worst Carbonara I ever had at Giovanni Rana at the Chelsea Market.  “The cooks were trained to do it like they do it there”  Meaning Verona, Italy, according to the Rana waiter.  I imagine a 5 year old who never even heard of a Carbonara since its not a Verona specialty can whip a better version than that.  But I digress.  Fresh peppery fettuccine with salty Pancetta, Parmesan, and a single fried egg – so simple yet so enjoyable.  Thank you Mr Pachulia.

But if someone would have told me that the Za Za would be the highlight of the night which also featured me doing Lady Gaga at a Korean karaoke, I would have ordered BonChon Chicken instead and saved a whole lot of money.  The famous $145 Minetta Cote de Boeuf, that huge center cut rib eye listed in every “Top Steak” list and prominently featured in magazines, TV shows, children Books have been written about it:  The Princess and the Cote de Boeuf!  Good night Cote de Boeuf!  You get the idea.  When it first arrived cut, it looked somewhat off and by the second slice, I felt like kissing it while whispering “You broke my heart Fredo”.  The fat content/fatty strips was roughly 37.8% of the meat, and surprisingly cutting it was a bit more of a challenge.  The meat itself was fine but it didnt have much of the flavor expected from a 45 day aged rib eye, and it was a tad chewy.  Compared to the Tomahawk from Costata which had all the flavor and none of that fat, this felt like a letdown.Minetta Tavern - Cote De Boeuf

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My Top 10 bites of 2012 in NYC

Some of the best eating we’ve done in 2012 was outside of NYC.  Mainly in New Orleans, Israel, and Turks and Caicos.  But there was plenty of eating in our back yard…

Marea – Astice.   Nova Scotia lobster + creamy Burrata, + Eggplant al funghetto + beautiful pesto drops = pure ecstasy in every bite.  I remember the feeling while eating it.  The Spaghetti with crab and fusilli not too shabby either.  Photo below courtesy of bionicgrrrl at BionicbitesMarea - Astice

Zabb Elee – Pad Ped Moo Krob.   Crispy fried and refried pork, green peppercorn, ginger, Thai eggplant and spicy curry.  A lot of heat and a lot flavor
Aldea – Shrimp Alhinho – loved the dish, not the meal.  Large succulent shrimp with a nice complex sauce.  Well done!
Alta – bacon wrapped dates.  Skip the other half of the dish (the olives) and get more of these babies.  Bacon never tasted that good.
Scarpetta – Rabbit Agnolotti – Perfectly cooked rabbit in those pillowy delicate Agnolotti bursting with flavor (silence of the lambs sound)

Roberta’s – Bee sting pizza.  Great tasting pie.  Spicy Sopressata (spicier than other Sopressata I’ve had) and the added honey contributed to interesting contrasting flavors.  Liked it more than Paulie Gee’s similar Delboy.  Or maybe it was the waitressesRoberta's Bee Sting Pizza
Sanrasa – Lamprie.  This Dutch influenced Sri Lankan classic is a piece of art.  Rice, meat, curry, caramelized onions, cashews, all baked wrapped in banana leaf.  What a great dish
Gazala’s Place – Hummus with lamb and pine nuts.  Nuttiest, creamiest, freshest Hummus I’ve had in NYC.Hummus with Lamb and Pine Nuts

Minetta Tavern – Black Label burger.  Best burger we ever had.  50% of it is prime 48 day aged rib eye.

Danji – Chicken wings.  This gourmet Korean tapas joint serves some mean chicken wings.  Cant wait to have them again.Danji

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Minetta Tavern – The Burger and the Beast

First an update on Ziggy Jr our goldfish.  He’s dead!  Pretty sure he took his own life after watching the 100th episode of Full House which my kids are now obsessed with since discovering it a few months ago.  Half of our DVR is filled with the stuff.  But lets move on to one of the best meals of the year…

Minetta Tavern is very unique in that it can be included in more than one or even 2 “Best Of” lists.  Best Steakhouse, Best Burger (Black Label Burger), Best Steak (Cote de Beauf), Best French bistro, and even Best restaurant in its class.

MT is located on the somewhat “divey” MacDougal street, and has a sort of unassuming exterior.  But as soon as you go in and open the red curtains you are transported somewhere else. 1930’s perhaps?  The place is not big and is packed.  The bar area is packed and they sit you almost like they sit you at a family reunion.  Except you sitting next to an Armenian cousin you didn’t know existed.

***Customary horrible pictures with iphone excuse****

Pasta Za ZaI was reading on Chowhound about Minetta not allowing taking pictures so the first few shots were taken with no flash.  Here’s the rundown…

Pasta Za Za – Very good.  I have a weakness for fresh pasta with egg.  They split the dish and put one egg on each.  Although we enjoyed it, not nearly as good as Herbsaint’s version in New Orleans

Bone Marrow – This was just ok for us.  Less so for the wife.  What saved the dish for me was the shallots with port – so delicious.  The baguettes were so buttery almost to the point of inedible.

Black Label burger – Met the high expectations.  The juiciest most flavorful burger that I can remember.  50% of it is 48 day dry aged prime rib eye with the other 50% a combination of brisket, rib and other goodies.  The fries were just ok for me however – not sure what the hoopla was.  Bone MarrowThey were barely seasoned and the aioli didnt save them for me.  But the burger was insane.

NY Strip – Excellent!  We ordered medium and it came medium-rare as expected.  Great, nicely seasoned crust and a very flavorful piece overall (28 day dry aged).  But the next day we were talking about the burger.

Chocolate Soufflé – AMAZING!! So rich and yummy

In short, this meal made a mark.  One of the most enjoyable meals of the year.  With drinks and tax $260 for the 2 of us.  Would definitely order the pasta, burger and soufflé again and perhaps go for the massive Cote de Beauf when we go with more people.

NY Strip

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