Over the holidays Alex and I spent a few days in NY so that I could catch up on the sight-seeing I didn’t get to over the past three years of living in the city. As part of our excursion, we had reservations to Michael White’s restaurant Marea.
Alex and I had been planning to visit Marea for over a year now so we had high expectations. Located on Central Park South, Marea boasts to be a culinary excursion of the palate. Inside the décor was crisp and clean, and the bar was illuminated with pure onyx.
With two Michelin stars, Marea serves to please. While our reservations were running 10 minutes late, we were greeted with complimentary glasses of champagne and sincere apologizes for being kept waiting (a nice touch which truly counts when many restaurants simply overlook this sort of gesture).
As we were seated for dinner, we decided on the tasting menu; a four course special to truly appreciate all the deliciousness Marea has to offer.
Before our dinner, we started off with the Ricci as an appetizer (sea urchin, lardo, sea salt). While this dish was highly reviewed, I couldn’t stomach it. I never had sea urchin before, and while I consider myself open to a wide array of cuisine, the texture and taste were too much for me. Marea also provided an amuse-bouche of a light pumpkin soup that, while I was indifferent to it, Alex enjoyed (especially the roasted pumpkin seeds).
For dinner, our choices went as follows:
POLIPO-grilled octopus, smoked potatoes, pickled red onion, chilies, tonnato.
[This was spectacular. I am a huge fan of grilled octopus and this appetizer was on point and the octopus was tender and fresh]
[The pasta was good, but nothing exceptional.]
[This was good and the fish was very tender. The only thing I did not like was that the dish was served with a side of beans that seemed out of place and too “out of the box” with the rest of the food.]
GIANDUJA-cocoa nib crema, hazelnut chocolate, ﬁor di latte gelato
OYSTERS- east and west coast oysters served with morellino mignonette & cucumber-lemon vinegar
[Very good. I am not the biggest fan of oysters, but they were very refreshing especially with the lemon vinegar.]
FUSILLI- red wine braised octopus, bone marrow
[Absolute perfection. Amazing, succulent, and flavorful.]
BISTECCA-grilled creekstone farms 50 day dry aged sirloin, bone marrow panzanella
[Fantastic steak, probably the best I ever had.]
AFFOGATO-zabaglione gelato, espresso and amaro.
[I can’t comment on this, it’s impossible to mess-up Affogato.]
At the end of our dinner (which lasted upwards of two hours and we were practically the last to leave), we enjoyed complementary chocolates and in our to-go bags (leftover steak that Alex happily ate for breakfast the next day) we were pleasantly surprised to discover two lemon chocolate chip muffins. A sweet touch to a sweet evening.
From Point A-to-Point Marea