The hubster and I recently lunched at the famed Le Bernardin restaurant in celebration of his birthday. Everything from the recently renovated sleek yet elegantly appointed dining room to the impeccably attentive and pleasantly informative service was exactly what we expected from the four star fine dining establishment that it is. The options for lunch are a $45 three course City Harvest Menu with $5 from very meal donated to the City Harvest charity, a $70 three course Prix-Fixe and an eight course Chef's Tasting Menu for $190. Eight courses is just too much for us especially at lunch so we both opted for the three course prix-fixe at $70 which gave us a chance to experience a range of flavors as well as textures. The food service was well paced, the presentation artful and the portion sizes were spot on. It's been said that Chef Eric Ripert is peerless at elevating seafood to an art and I can definitely understand why now. All in all, a stellar culinary experience and one which we look forward to repeating some time in the future.
155 West 51st Street (The Equitable Building)
New York City
Salmon Rillette made with a combination of poached fresh salmon and smoked salmon served with thin toast rounds was the amuse bouche. Creamy in texture and complex in flavor, this complimentary signature dish was a pleasant start to our meal. The recipe can be found on Chef Ripert's site.
Layers of thinly pounded Yellowfin Tuna; Foie Gras and Toasted Baguette, Chives and Extra Virgin Olive Oil
This was subtle yet flavorful and the baguette added a nice touch of crunch.
Hamachi-Lettuce Roll; Mint, Thai basil, Carrot-Lime "Sauce Vierge"
Unlike the tuna, this appetizer was literally an explosion of delightful flavors.
Baked Cod; Artichoke "Barigoule" Perigord Truffle Butter
The fish was perfectly cooked and the buttery sauce and truffles were so tasty.
Crispy Black Bass; Pickled Cucumbers, Black Garlic - Persian Lime Sauce
The flavor tasted Asian inspired and the pickled cucumbers were a fitting accompaniment.
Banana-Praline; Pate Feuillitée, Caramelized Banana, Hazelnut Praline Cream
This was okay. We just didn't expect it to be so cloyingly sweet.
Panna Cotta; Greek Yogurt, Caramelized Fig Purée, Roasted Pear Quince Syrup
Light and refreshing!
Warm and comforting and a nice conclusion to our meal.