Tag Archives: russian

Russian Tea Room

My wife and I popped in here with a deal we got on Groupon for a six vodka- and four blini- tasting.

Here are the vodkas we tried, in order of how I liked them:

Jewel of Russia
Karlssons Gold

We also had Jewel of Russia Wild Berry as our sixth, but I don’t really count that as a true vodka since it is heavily flavored. It tasted more like a port.

We did two salmon and two trout blinis. The blini was buckwheat, and soft, with a generous amount of sour cream, some chopped boiled eggs, onions and the caviar. We both liked the salmon better.

White fish was also available on the Groupon but we passed on that one.

Overall this was a nice snack. Glad we did it. Just hanging out for a while in the dining room itself is worth the price of admission. So opulent and nice inside.

150 W 57th St
New York, NY 10019

Olma Caviar Boutique & Lounge


My buddy Jay, from The Dishelin Guide, invited me to this pretty cool caviar tasting press meal at Olma Caviar Boutique & Lounge on the upper west side. This joint has a small bar counter in the Plaza Hotel, so this location is a spot where you can stretch out and relax with some champagne at the bar or in the spacious, bright dining room before the lounge atmosphere kicks in.


This place offers an eight blini tasting of caviar for $55, which covers every type of caviar they offer.



That’s a pretty sweet deal, considering that just one blini of the Beluga will run you $32, and one blini of the Karat is $22. Those two bites alone cover the cost of the eight, so the other six are essentially free. Crazy bargain!






My favorite of the eight was the Karat, which was a bit more briny and salty than the others without going too far.  My next favorite was Beluga, which was so freaking smooth and creamy. I now understand why people go crazy over this shit. Save for the salmon, I didn’t really pick out too many differences in flavor, aside from the fact that I did like the Siberian and White Sturgeon better than the others.

We also put down a smoked salmon lox sandwich with tomato, arugula and cream cheese. It was served on a nice toasty and warm piece of French baguette. Absolutely delicious.



I’d definitely hit this place again, and it’s a perfect place for a date.

420 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10024


I nabbed a Groupon deal for a seven course tasting for two at this joint, with wine pairings. At $75, it was a steal.



The meal opened with a lightly sweet Macedonian Muscat and a delicious tomato soup. The soup was smooth and velvety, and reminded me almost of a vodka sauce.


Next was the Balkanika salad, which was mixed greens, beets, pine nuts and prosciutto, and served with a light red Macedonian wine. This was a hearty salad. The addition of the beets and prosciutto means that you could easily eat this dish as a main course in a larger portion.


Next was a yogurt, feta, mint, garlic and dill dip/spread served with toasted whole wheat pita bread. This shit would be amazing on an everything bagel instead of cream cheese. It came with a shot of this absinthe/sambuca type of liquor, on the rocks.


Next up was an eggplant and zucchini tapenade with pine nuts, onions, garlic and red peppers. I wasn’t too thrilled about this dish, but then again my wife and I are not bigs fans of eggplant to begin with. This course did not come with a wine pairing.


My favorite course of the night was this spiced beef wrapped in grape leaf and cabbage. Each had its own flavor. In one, the meat was perfumed and spicy. In the other, it was mild and comforting. Both very good in their own way. This dish came with a red; Shiraz.



The last savory course was chicken kebab with yogurt sauce and potatoes. The chicken was nice and tender on these, and the yogurt sauce was thicker than the typical runny white bullshit you get with a kebab. The potatoes were delicious as well. Soft, yet still firm enough to pick up with your form, and deeply flavorful. This came with a white Gavi wine from Italy.


The dessert course was, of course, baklava. It was a little tough to break through with the tiny dessert forks, but the nutty flavor was excellent. It was a bit too sweet, however. Perhaps too much honey. It was served with a flute of Prosecco.


The place even serves their mezes and sides by the pound in what looks like a deli counter. Nice!


691 9th Ave.
New York, NY 10036