First off, check out my YouTube Ride & Review video HERE.
This joint popped onto my radar via Instagram, and I saw a couple of dishes that I really wanted to try when I browsed their menu online, Namely, the mortadella and foie gras terrine, and the dry aged prime rib. There were some pasta items on the menu that looked good too, so I rounded up another couple to give this place a thorough try across the entire menu.
This joint serves eastern European flavors and derives inspiration for dishes from India, the Baltic region, Russia, Scandinavia and more.
The cocktails I tried were split down the middle: One was great, the other was too sweet. If you like margaritas, get this horseradish and cucumber version with smoked salt. Amazing.
Skip on the old fashioned – it’s way too sweet.
We decided to start with the foie gras and mortadella terrine. All of us were excited. It was good, but I think we all agreed that we like both items separate rather than together. Good flavor, thoughtful presentation, etc. It’s just that 2+2=4 in this case, not 5. Math.
Next up was the mushroom patty melt. The bartender recommended this, and it turned out to be our top two or three item of the night. I never would have ordered it otherwise. It was both beautiful and tasty.
It comes with two “long tots” which eat like a cross between tots, fish sticks and knish. Enjoyable.
For the middle course, we tried two items under the pasta menu: spaetzle and kasha varnishkes. The kasha varnishkes were bowtie pasta shaped noodles, cooked al dente, and served with a mix of caramelized onion, couscous and herbs. It was good but a bit heavy on the onion. My buddy said there wasn’t enough butter. The spaetzle was the better of the two. In fact, that was my favorite item of the night.
For the mains, we ordered the braised pork belly, the dry aged prime rib, and a side of saag (Indian style stewed spinach).
The pork belly was good. It had a nice flavor despite some of the leaner portions being slightly dry. Nice touch with the charred lemon.
The prime rib was dry and mealy/grainy in texture. I’m not sure what happened here, because even though it was overcooked there should have been a lot of juiciness left. The dry aged flavor was nice though, at least, but the jus should have been left in a gravy boat on the side rather than poured over the entire plate without asking. The jus was over-reduced and a bit bitter, sadly. Also, at $120 for 20oz it’s way steep, even with the boiled potatoes as a “composed dish” rather than “a la carte” like a steakhouse. 6/10.
Here’s a shot of the saag. I always love this stuff. It’s my go to order at Indian restaurants.
Dessert was a beautiful and warm sticky bun with apple and a touch of flake salt and spices like cardamom. This was a hit.
Over all this place served up a good meal, but not great. I was disappointed by the prime rib and probably wouldn’t go back.
157 E 53rd St
New York, NY 10022