Legacy Records is the restaurant, and Ada’s place is the bar/lounge upstairs. Both places are serving up some awesome food, connected by the same kitchen staff and crew.
While at first glance you might think that prices are high for the portion size, once must remember that these are “no tipping” establishments, where the tip is already worked into the pricing.
I started at the main bar with a brandy old fashioned. This was delicious and beautiful. The ice game is on point here.
Later on I tried the “Fig Fix,” which was somewhere between a mint julep and a berry bramble type of drink. Very nice, but I prefer the stronger shit.
We started with three different crudos. Each crudo comes with four pieces, unless otherwise prepared (like the fluke, which is a tartare). They’re all around the $20-$25 range. First, and my favorite, was the hamachi with cilantro citrus cream and puffed rice.
This red snapper was “veddy tasty.” Do not choose what Hiro-san offers in the mystery box over this. If you haven’t seen Weird Al’s masterpiece film, UHF, then you missed that reference completely. Do yourself a favor and go watch it. Now. Before finishing the rest of the review. You’ll thank me later.
Third, the scallop. These were small. I wish there was more to them, because they were delicious; bright, acidic, creamy, smooth… everything you want in a crudo. And beautifully presented.
After the crudos, we transitioned to some smaller plates. First was the octopus.
This was executed nicely, and consisted of about 1.5 tentacles worth of meat.
This next dish was a special entree listed at $40, but we split it as a shared app. Pigeon with parsnips and some other shit.
The meat was roasted rare to medium rare, and was pretty much in the realm of duck in taste. The waiter said it was deboned, but I think they were really just referring to the thigh, breast and rib sections, as the wings and lower legs were not deboned.
Then we switched over to the pasta dishes. My first, and favorite, was the pesto cavatelli with sausage and mint. Incredible.
This torchio pasta was perfectly cooked and came with clams.
The spaghetti with uni and red pepper was great too, and the sauce reminded me of peri peri sauce from Portugal.
At this point we also tried some of their house made bread and butter. I didn’t shoot it, but both bread and butter varieties were good. However, at $8, I’m not sure I would order it. Fortunately for us, they brought it out on the house since we had a lot of delicious sauce to soak up from the pasta dishes.
We tried two entrees. First was the dry aged rib eye.
This was perfectly cooked and absolutely delicious, though it lacked that dry-aged flavor punch. It was only aged for 14 days, so that may be why. It ate more like a filet than a rib eye, which was a nice surprise in terms of texture. However, at $48, it was a bit on the small side (maybe 8-10oz max). The Brussels were too acidic/citrus flavored for my liking, but the meat really was almost perfect. I think it was just the eye, or longissimus dorsi, and not the cap though, which was a little bit of a bummer. Overall this was still an 8/10, so I was happy.
Next up, duck for two.
We were four people, so we only had one slice of duck each. I could probably eat all of this myself as a main if I wanted, but it really is a good portion size for two. If you get this with a date, you’ll basically each get two of these, which I think is fair for the $98 price tag including tip:
I should note that this is one of the best duck dishes I’ve ever had, right up there with Little Frog, The Grill and Ferris. I already have this listed as a contender for the best dishes of 2019.
We skipped dessert downstairs, but went up to try some of the items on the bar menu upstairs at Ada’s Place.
First, the duck and honey sandwich.
This is basically a slightly oversized slider, but the flavor is immense. The duck comes from the leg meat of the duck that we ate downstairs (which was only breast), and it is paired with kimchi and a delicious spicy red pepper sauce, which is balanced deftly by the addition of honey. Another contender for best dishes of 2019. Awesome.
This burger was great too. It’s described as a crudo burger, so expect it to come out rare.
This, too, is dressed with a spicy red pepper sauce, but the fresh mozzarella cheese cuts it beautifully with a nice, mild creaminess. We split one “slider plus” sized burger among four of us, so I need to get back in here and try this all by myself.
Finally, the Tuscan fried chicken.
This is a steal at $24 for a bowl of beautifully batter-fried and spiced thigh and breast meat. I could eat buckets of this. I also really liked the combo of red pepper, lemon and rosemary.
In short, I highly recommend this place. Everything we tried above was great – no bad dishes. While the price tag may feel steep for some items, you need to remember that you’re getting superior quality in every dish, and you have that tip already included. Go give it a shot. I know I’ll be back. Maybe even tonight.
LEGACY RECORDS & ADA’S PLACE
517 West 38th St
New York, NY 10018