Tag Archives: chocolate cake

RW Lunch: i Trulli

i Trulli is a lovely and charming Italian restaurant with a gorgeous outdoor garden in the back, where a friend and I enjoyed our Restaurant Week lunch meal.

i trulli_meFirst we were given water and our glass was always full. Then the waiter brought out a small basket of bread: There were 2 different types. One was foccaccia like with sun-dried tomato, fennel, rosemary and other seasoning. The other was rustic brown bread. It came with nice fluffy and creamy butter.

i trulli_breadI had the baby calzones for my appetizer. One had cheese and tomato filling, while the other was sausage and broccoli rabe. I think I liked the cheesy one better. There wasn’t enough of the filling in the other calzone.

i trulli_appsFor my main course, I chose the “straw and hay” pasta dish, Paglia e Fieno, which came with peas, pancetta (lots of it, to my delight) and cream sauce. It was truly delicious! The pasta itself were long strips of golden yellow and green colors and cooked to perfection. The peas were fresh and wonderful, the pancetta was incredibly flavorful with just the right amount of salt, slightly crispy with tons of great seasoning. It tasted amazing. The dish also came with lots of Parmesan cheese. It was very rich and filling.

i trulli_pastaMy friend had the Pork Scaloppini which was pork medallions with bread salad of tomatoes, onion and cucumber. The presentation was really nice and I loved that it was so colorful, but I wasn’t a huge fan of the pork. It didn’t taste all that flavorful to me and was a bit too chewy. The salad was pretty tasty though.

i trulli_porkchopDessert was Torta di Cioccolato, chocolate cake with a scoop of coconut sorbetti. When we were first served dessert, my friend and I felt that the portion size was quite small, but it still satisfied us. The cake, however, was more like a mini brownie with chocolate drizzled on top. The ice cream was in a perfect small ball and there was toffee peanut brittle underneath it. I enjoyed the cake which was chocolate-y, moist and slightly sweet, while the coconut sorbetti was refreshing and light.

i trulli_dessertI really enjoyed the meal, atmosphere and attentive service at i Trulli.

i trulli

i Trulli
124 E 27 St
New York, NY

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RW: Sofrito | Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse | Bar Eolo

Summer Restaurant Week (July 21-August 15) is in full swing and so far, I have had the opportunity to have dinner at Sofrito (Pan-Latin), lunch at Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse and dinner at Bar Eolo (Sicilian Kitchen).

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Dinner at Sofrito

Appetizer: Empanadas… I chose beef filling for one of them and shrimp filling for the other. They were both quite tasty, but I enjoyed the beef one better. I also got to try my friend’s yucca crusted chicken which was wonderfully crunchy and came with sweet and delicious passion fruit dip.

Entree: Carved roast pork with Spanish rice and peas, as well as sweet plaintains. This meal was huge! I was only able to finish maybe half of it. The pork was tender like butter and the skin was incredibly crispy with great flavor. It would’ve been even better if there was more sauce. The rice was pretty good and went well with the pork, but the plaintains were just okay.

Dessert: Tres leches cake with whipped cream and strawberries. This was delectable: Intensely sweet, especially soaked in the wonderful cream and the fruit was a perfect companion.

Atmosphere: The dining area was chic and roomy, but we were not expecting the obnoxiously loud club music playing in the front. This made it extremely difficult to to hold a conversation and dampened the overall experience.

Service: Quite good… The waitress was attentive and nice.

Lunch at Nick + Stef's Steakhouse

Lunch at Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse

Appetizer: Chilled pea and lemongrass soup with peekytoe crab and garlic croutons. I was not a huge fan of the soup, but I did like the crab and croutons on top.

Entree: Steak Frites. (What else would you get at a Steakhouse?) The skirt steak came already cut up for our convenience, and was herb marinated with pesto sauce. The steak was delicious and full of savory flavor. The fries were thin and crispy, just the way I like them.

Dessert: Chocolate Mousse Cake. Rich, chocolate layered cake that melted in my mouth was sweet, soft, delicate and delightful.

Atmosphere: Classy, white and elegant

Service: Wonderful!

Dinner at Bar Eolo

Dinner at Bar Eolo

Appetizer: I was looking forward to trying the calamari but it was no longer on their Restaurant Week menu, so I had to settle for the saffron risotto ball. I was disappointed because there was only one risotto ball. Also, I couldn’t taste the saffron at all, but did like the cheesiness of it and enjoyed the beef and pea ragu in the center.

Entree: Seared halibut with roasted potatoes, tomato, mushrooms, capers with olive oil and sauce. The halibut was cooked to perfection, with a bit of crispy skin that tasted so good. I also really enjoyed the potatoes, sauce and everything combined together nicely.

Dessert: Warm flour-less chocolate cake with strawberries, pistachio cous cous and pistachio ice cream was well worth the $4 additional fee. The chocolate cake was truly delectable: Melt in your mouth, finger licking delicious. It was rich, velvety and tasted of pure chocolate. The pistachio cous cous was underneath the ice cream and tasted light, subtly sweet, luscious.

Atmosphere: Lovely, cute restaurant in Chelsea with outdoor seating.

Service: The hostess and waitress seemed to be a bit confused throughout the meal, but they meant well.

 
Sofrito
400 E. 57 St
New York, NY

Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse
9 Penn Plaza
New York, NY

Bar Eolo
190 7th Ave
New York, NY

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Lunch at Mercer Kitchen

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I have been wanting to try Mercer Kitchen for awhile now, so decided to check it out with a good friend, for lunch at Restaurant Week. It’s a trendy restaurant smack dab in the middle of Soho at the Mercer Hotel, with the dining area downstairs, underneath the street where we could see people walking above us through the latticework on the ceiling. Exposed brick walls, long banquettes, and candlelit sconces give the place a timelessly stylish, chic and sophisticated ambiance.

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The meal itself was also wonderful. I started off with black truffle and fontina cheese pizza. Usually I like my pizza to have tons of different toppings, but this one didn’t need it. It was amazing on its own, and quite a nicely sized personal pizza — I ended up taking half of it home. If you like truffle oil or truffle in general, you need to order this pizza! It had the perfect balance of cheesy goodness and hints of black truffle in each bite. However, was a little bit on the oily side.

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For the main course, I ordered (The Mercer) Burger which consisted of pepperjack cheese (which I replaced with cheddar), crunchy red onions, Russian dressing and french fries. The burger was on the small side, but don’t be fooled… It will still fill you up and is well made. The meat was juicy and flavorful. I especially enjoyed the taste of the crispy fried onions with cheese and dressing. The lettuce and tomato were both fresh and added to the overall deliciousness. I also liked the skinny fries- They were quite crispfully tasty.

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My friend, however had chosen the Veal Milanese which was according to her, tasteless and inedible. To the waiter’s credit, he took it back without any attitude and brought out her next choice of Steam Skate with Tarragon, Sesame Seed, and Baby Bak Choy, almost right away.

Dessert was warm Valrhona chocolate cake with crisp Orange Tuile and Vanilla Bean gelato. This molten chocolate cake was heavenly- Rich and oozing with sweet chocolateness. I loved the warm chocolate filling, but to be honest didn’t really taste the orange bit. And the vanilla bean gelato was a disappointment. It was a little bland, as it lacked vanilla bean flavor.

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My friend’s banana cake with salted caramel gelato was a true delight and that gelato was superb- Very sweet, strong caramel flavor. Yum!

Overall, a lovely meal with lovely company and attentive, friendly and professional service.

 

Location: 99 Prince Street.

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Foodie Weekend

Friday night, I had the opportunity to try Aurora, Italian restaurant for my friend’s birthday dinner. Aurora is a little spot in Soho, hidden away from the bright lights but quite the happening place. We were seated at a lovely corner table. It was cozy and romantic- Lights were dimmed a little bit too much, making it hard to read the menu.

I chose the le Pappardelle al Vitello, which was “homemade wide cut spinach flavored pasta with Vermont veal rag├╣ & gremolata.” It was simply delicious. The pasta was top notch; the sauce tasty accompanied with the gremolata which is a combination of lemon zest, garlic, parsley, and olive oil was light and delightful and the veal was tender and savory. It was so tasty that I ate it all up, and even scraped the plate with bread to get the last of the flavor.

The dessert of chocolate terrine (cake) was quite rich and very chocolate-y with almond gelato and an amaretto stick on top sprinkled powdered sugar, a circle of caramel, pistachios and almonds. This concoction was unique and worked beautifully. I especially enjoyed chocolate with the lighter not as heavy flavor of the almond gelato.


Also Friday night, I got to check out a hilarious musical improv show with another friend and after that went to see Argo, which I didn’t really know about but am so glad my friend convinced me to see it. Based on true events, it showed the incredible covert operation to rescue 6 Americans from the Iran hostage crisis in 1979. This movie was suspenseful, intense, and deeply moving. One of the best this year.

Saturday I spent the morning volunteering at the Food Network NYC Food & Wine Festival, helping out at the Grand Tasting with replenishing wine glasses for the guests. I got to see part of Paula Dean’s cooking demonstration! Before leaving, I had the chance to experience it for myself. I started at the Delta lounge, hanging out on one of the Business Class airplane seats which was actually quite comfortable. I continued on, grabbing delicious small bite samples along the way- Artisan sandwiches and crackers, BBQ, pasta, mac and cheese, potato pancakes, meatballs, and more. I also was given olive oil galore, a multitude of snacks- chips, granola bars, dessert bars and even the official goody bag.

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