Tag Archives: 57th

Anchor Bar

The other day while walking around our neighborhood, my wife and I noticed that Anchor Bar had opened. For those who don’t know, Anchor Bar up in Buffalo is supposed to be the place that created what we now know as “Buffalo Wings.” The Buffalo location has become quite the tourist trap, so I am told, and people like to bicker about which place is better: Anchor Bar or Duff’s.

Well, I’ve been to neither. But I have been to some pretty fantastic wings places here, like Bonnie’s Grill and International Wings Factory (my two favorites – Bonnie’s for traditional Buffalo style, and IWF for the vast array of amazing flavors and dry rubs). Some people tell me that Dan & John’s is great too.

Anyway, we decided to give Anchor Bar a try. We ordered three styles: Hot (top), Suicidal (middle) and Habanero Dry Rub (bottom).

I’m not sure if they’re weakening the spice levels for the pussies out there, but hot was more like a mild or medium to me.

I expected suicidal to destroy me. Instead it was just a more earthy and granular flavor that had the same level of heat as the hot flavor.

The habanero dry rub was the weakest in spice of the three, and at times it felt like the flavors didn’t penetrate into the meat. They were nice and crunchy though.

Overall the wings were good. Above average for sure. I still think I like Bonnie’s and IWF better, but this is a pretty solid spot and very convenient.

My favorite thing that we ate was the beef on weck. I hope you people realize how fucking difficult it was to fool autocorrect from making that say “beef on deck.” Fucking annoying bullshit. The sandwich was good here, particularly the bread (I’ve had better roast beef).

Weck is a special kind of roll that also hails from the Buffalo area, typically topped with thick grain salt and other seeds and spices. The roast beef is sliced thin and served hot on the sandwich, typically with nothing but horseradish. I sliced up the pickle spear that came with the sandwich and put that on there as well. And it may be blasphemous, but I’ve always thought this sandwich would kick serious ass with some melted cheddar on top.

The great thing about this item at Anchor Bar is that for $16 you can get the sandwich and five wings – the best of both Buffalo specialties in one meal. Give that a shot if you go.

ANCHOR BAR
327 W 57th St
New York, NY 10019

Bevy

Bevy is the new restaurant that took the place of The Back Room at One57. My wife took me here for an early birthday dinner. I was excited to hit this joint, because they have rib eye fat cap steak on the menu (aka spinalis dorsi), as well as a bison rib eye. We tried both.

We started with the rib eye cap steak as a shared appetizer. The portion size is 8oz, so this was perfect to share as an app.

This was perfectly cooked, super tender and amazingly flavorful. At $48 it’s a bit pricey, but totally worth it given the quality. 10/10.

Both the rib eye cap and the bison rib eye hail from Fossil Farms. I’ve encountered these guys at food shows in the past, and the quality is superb. I hope to work with them in the future and feature some more of their proteins here on the website. Especially the exotics.

Anyway, we ate the rib eye cap steak with some crispy lemon oyster mushrooms, which they sent to us on the house!

This is a reprise of a dish that used to be on the Back Room menu, which I really liked. It’s just as good as I remember. It’s also really damn beautiful.

Several menu items were carried over, actually. I was glad to see that many of the good ones remained.

But now for the big guns. The 40oz, 28-day dry-aged bison rib eye. It’s actually two chops on the bone.

It comes with a vinaigrette dressed frisee salad and asparagus. But the plating is gorgeous. We actually fanned it out a little so you can more easily see the perfectly pink interior.

Bison is slightly gamy, but unless you’re looking for it, you probably wouldn’t notice a flavor difference between bison and beef.

It’s typically more lean than beef, and sometimes has a more iron-metallic flavor profile than beef. Very good. 8/10.

We ate this baby with sides of paprika dusted steak fries and trumpet mushrooms. Both were great. I was impressed with the crisp on the fries. So good! I usually dislike the massive quarter-of-a-potato style steak fries, but I’d get these again and again, every time I eat here.

The trumpets were good, but I did enjoy the oyster mushrooms more. These were served with minted labneh, which added a nice fresh pop of flavor.

Dessert was great as well. We ordered one, but they gave us two. Great service! In fact, Amanda was a wonderful waitress. She knew her stuff and had great recommendations.

First was this apple pie with a sugar cookie crust. So awesome! That’s vanilla ice cream up front, covered with a nice caramel sauce.

The other dessert was cheesecake with lemon pudding and espresso ice cream. Really tough to choose a best between these two.

I definitely recommend this place. If you happen to carry the “Founders Card,” you get 20% off when you use it to pay.

BEVY
153 W. 57th Street, 3rd Floor
New York, NY 10019

Brasserie 8.5

Brasserie 8.5 is part of the Patina group of restaurants. If you’re loyal to them, they’re loyal to you. What I mean by that is simply this: go to one of their restaurants, and at the end of the meal they provide you with a contact and comment card. When you supply them with an email address and date of birth, they send you a free $50 credit for your birthday, which can be used within two months of the date. My wife and I have been to many of their establishments, and we haven’t been disappointed yet. The $50 credit makes it all a bit sweeter too.

So we came here with the $50 credit this time because it was within two months of my wife’s birthday. But, to be honest, we’ve been meaning to come here for quite some time. This joint offers an amazing happy hour deal with $5 quality draft beers, $1 oysters, and a bunch of other fairly priced items. In addition to that, they have a regular $29 three-course price fix lunch, a regular $39 three-course price fix dinner, no corkage fees on Sundays and Mondays, and on Sundays they have an awesome $32 bottomless mimosa brunch buffet that takes over the whole lounge area. Amazing, and you are truly dining in elegance with impeccable service at this massive midtown restaurant. The bar area is really nice, too, and the cocktail menu has some very nice concoctions.

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So let’s get down to business. My wife did the price fix menu. Her appetizer was octopus with bean puree. The octopus was soft and tender, but it had a bit of skin slime going on. Perhaps a quick char on the grill would have knocked that back a bit before plating it on the bean puree.

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Her entree was branzino with kale and calamari. These were nicely cooked and the skin was crisp. However the fish taste was a bit stronger than we are usually accustomed to for branzino. Not bad in any way, just a bit more powerful than expected.

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Her dessert was a pear tart with vanilla ice cream. This was a beautiful dish, and the tart was perfectly executed.

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I started with this nice cylinder of tuna tartare. The tuna was fresh and the cucumbers were crisp. The dressing was minimal so as to allow the simplicity and quality of the tuna stand on its own.

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My entree was, as you might have expected, their dry-aged cote de boeuf, which was topped with sauteed mushrooms.

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This nice bone-in rib eye was cooked to perfection on the inside. An even medium rare through and through.

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I’m giving it 8/10 for flavor. I’d say it came in at about 20oz., if I had to guess. While the meat was perfectly cooked, there was a lot of bleed out due to the fact that the outside did not have a great deal of sear or char to it. That char tends to lock in all of the meat juices, that way, when you let it rest after cooking, none of the juices pour out of the meat. I wondered if it was cooked sous vide style… but the fact that the mushrooms were plated on top of the steak didn’t help much either, as that heat and moisture would work to remove any trace of searing that was done during the cooking process.

On the side I had an order of fries and sauteed spinach. The spinach was a bit watery, but it had a good buttery-garlic flavor.

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The fries were perfectly crisp, though a little light on the seasoning.

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I skipped dessert and shared some of my wife’s tart. All in, this was a pretty good meal. And we did well with that $50 birthday credit. Check out the William:

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BRASSERIE 8.5
9 W 57th St
New York, NY 10019