I’ve been living in New York for four years now, and in all that time my parents have never visited me once. So when they finally decided it was time to drop by, I thought I should treat them to a nice meal (or two). On a side note though, they were actually in New York for a wedding, so I was really just free housing for the week. Oh well, you take what you can, right?
One of my all-time favorite restaurants in all of New York is Jean Georges. This is definitely a restaurant for special occasions with its high ceilings, white tablecloths, and extra large windows reaching all the way up to the ceiling surrounding a pristine main dining room. Each table is spaced well away from every other table in the room so it is never too noisy or crowded, giving diners a sense that the restaurant is serving them, and only them. Service is exceptional to the point where all dishes at the table are placed down simultaneously then explained in great detail. Water glasses are never empty and any questions or concerns are addressed immediately. Not only is the food delicious and presented beautifully, but they also offer an extremely affordable lunch for a three Michelin-stars rating.
Our amuse bouche to start was a spicy seasoned piece of watermelon, a slice of crispy cucumber, and a shot glass of miso soup with popcorn bits. The watermelon had a good kick of spiciness and while the soup was creative in theory and texture, most people probably wouldn’t care much for it.
My first course was lightly poached Maine ruby shrimp with serrano chillies and topped with sea urchin. The presentation of this dish alone was visually stunning. Small orange and purple flowers were sprinkled over the perfectly cooked shrimp, almost like colors jumping off an artist’s canvas. The uni added a smooth, buttery richness to the dish that was balanced by a hint of citrus from some lime.
My mother started off with a delicious peekytoe crab salad. The large chunks of crab meat were mixed with a nice amount of spice and topped with a sweet scoop of iced honeydew sorbet. The chilled sweet and spicy flavors blended nicely into a great summer time dish.
The hamachi sashimi with avocado, yuzu, and radish for my father.
My second course was a sauteed veal scallopine with flying pig ham, mushrooms, and lavender. The mostly tender veal tasted peppery and the ham had a great crisp to it. The mushrooms added some earthiness to the dish, but there was not much lavender taste to it.
To follow my mother’s crab salad, she had a nice and flaky steamed piece of cod with good flavors in a miso garnish, all atop fresh and crispy snow peas.
Strawberry themed dessert.
Jean Georges never ceases to impress me no matter how many times I go. Everything from the beginning of the meal to the end is on a level above everywhere else. It even earns the approval of parents it’s so good! If ever in New York, makes sure to dine at Jean Georges. You will not forgive yourself if you don’t.
Note: Not pictured were petite fours consisting of cassis macarons, house made marshmallows, and chocolates.