Goodness I have much to catch up on! I have been living quite the whirlwind life lately. I have a new job as a professional ballerina (HOORAY!!!!!!) that has me working 9 to 6 5 days a week and my weekends have been full of traveling and auditioning. I love being busy though. I certainly do get worn down, but when I am turned on and have a pile on my plate I can just go, go, go until it is all gone. This weekend I am home, no auditions, so I am going to use the time to catch up on some things I have been neglecting. Like this. I have a new Iron Chef to review and just last night I visited a new restaurant in Pittsburgh that was simply impeccable. Let’s begin!
Last weekend while I was in New York City auditioning, my Grandma spoiled me once again and took me out to eat at Bar Amaricain, Iron Chef Bobby Flay’s restaurant, located in midtown Manhattan. He has a second location in Mohegan Sun, Connecticut too. I have to confess I wasn’t blown away. I don’t know if I was expecting too much and set my standards too high or if I just did a really bad job ordering. To give Bobby the benefit of the doubt I am choosing to think that it was my poor ordering that caused the disappointment. It was all very tasty, it’s not that it tasted bad, it just overall left me feeling kinda blah. Like I could’ve gotten a meal like that at any other fancy restaurant. Or even in my own kitchen.
Because we went out to eat the night before my audition I didn’t want to eat anything too heavy that might make me feel sluggish or still full the next morning so I opted to get two appetizers. Usually for me that ends up being a perfect amount of food. I chose a lobster and avocado cocktail and a chopped vegetable salad with farmer’s cheese. The lobster and avocado cocktail was very refreshing. The lobster was nice and fresh and the avocado was perfectly ripe. It was dressed with a light dressing and some fresh herbs. Very simple. Everything was presented as promised but there was a lot left to be desired.
The chopped vegetable salad I have to say was the low point of the meal. I was expecting to get a lovely assortment of veggies like cucumbers and peppers and such but really what I got was a huge bowl filed mostly of shredded lettuce and cabbage. Not exciting. The dressing was light and barely noticeable (which I didn’t mind) and the cheese was sprinkled throughout in such little pellets that it was impossible for me to just pick that out and eat it by itself. What a bummer. I really could’ve made that by myself. I understand it is only an appetizer, but geez Mr. Flay, couldn’t you make it a little more out of my own culinary capacity? You are known for your bold flavors! Where are they??
As you can see in the background, my Grandma got an onion tart. That was pretty tasty. Finally something more exciting. I do think I could make that on my own too but it at least had some nice flavor and kept me excited bite after bite. It was topped with smoked salmon, giving it a very nice depth of flavor.
Since my salad was so mediocre, I didn’t eat much of it. I felt very unsatisfied. I decided to give dessert a try. Maybe he can tie some loose ends. Maybe. I was once again drawn to the banana bread pudding (just like I was while at my last Iron Chef restaurant: Marc Forgione). Marc Forgione’s was better, but it’s probably not very fair to compare, huh? Bobby Flay’s bread pudding was all one consistency. It was a little too much of a solid form for my taste. I would’ve preferred to be able to differentiate between the pieces of bread and the creamy pudding around them. The ice cream on top was so drab I honestly don’t even remember what flavor it was. The one high point of the dessert was the caramel sauce generously puddled on the plate. It was wonderfully sweet and had a really clean caramel flavor.
Overall Bobby dearest, I have to say I wasn’t impressed. Although I just ordered appetizers, I was hoping I would be awed enough that I didn’t leave wondering if I should’ve gone for just a main course instead so I could have at least left feeling satisfied. What a pity. I wish to give you another chance. A shot at redemption. But maybe I’ll try one of your other restaurants instead… Mesa Grill perhaps?
Better luck next time!