Perry Street restaurant has been touted as one of the new hot restaurants from Jean-George this fall. The location is literally on the West Side highway and Perry Street. It is situated in the basement of one of the glass Meir apartment buildings. Certainly a destination location, at least for now.
Getting a reservation is not easy. I always find it amusing because what else could you be? Getting annoyed is worthless. We called a month in advance and they were almost laughing that I’d attempt because certainly only 630 and 1030 were available. Meanwhile, I have heard from people that got the nod that the restaurant was only slightly full at dinner. Perhaps they were keeping the seats open for the celebrities that might choose to drop in. Guess what, that won’t keep the restaurant in the positive. Let’s see what happens 6 months from now.
My friend made reservations for lunch and I was the honored guest. The restaurant is serene and modern. For a downtown restaurant it actually has a very uptown feel. The staff is very nice but not very attentive. We literally were there for 3 hours and no one jumped to take our wine order or give us a check. Good in some ways, bad in others.
The food was simple yet elegant. I would call it modern french. Everything had a sauce to highlight the flavors. We had an excellent Australian wine for the meal.
We decided that the appetizers looked much more appealing than the main course. We split four appetizers and one main course and of course a dessert.
They start you off with a little coffee cup of celery root soup that once you hit the bottom has a browned butter vinaigrette at the bottom. Good but rich.
We began with a pumpkin confit that had been rolled up in a pastry dough and made very crispy. On the side was a mixed green salad with toasted pumpkin seeds and underneath a spicy vinaigrette. It was very clever. More clever than anything. We paired that with fresh mozzarella cut into small little squares with tiny quartered grilled figs in between with a red wine vinaigrette. Simple.
Our second course was the best of all of them. Raw tuna that created a roll wrapped in a crunchy pastry served next to a spicy onion dip. Almost like the spicy ingredient they add to a spicy tuna roll. The best of the whole lot was the salt and pepper crab dumplings. Large dumplings stuffed with fresh crab under a mound of crisp snow peas over a spicy soy vinegar concoction in a bowl. This was innovative and delicious.
For the third course we split the artic char. It wasn’t that interesting and the fish was very fishy tasting. Fillet of artic char on the right, four roasted sliced cherry tomatoes on the left. When the entree is served they pour a light red tomato sauce into the plate. On the side is a small bowl of Israeli couscous mixed with small clams. It just did not wow either of us. We barely touched it.
Dessert was really good. Roasted peaches served with homemade pistachio ice cream. It was delicious. Nothing like eating tasty peaches in the beginning of October. The last gasps of summer. It was a must.
I loved the meal because it was shared with a really good friend. We gabbed, we ate, we drank, etc. I always enjoy our "special" meals. Would I go back? I am not so sure. Perhaps it would be worth trying out for dinner. It would certainly be worth checking out the dinner vibe. My guess is lunch is the best call. Simple, serene and elegant. That plays so well with lunch. Dinner? I am not so sure.