Restaurant Week Part 2 -- Nougatine


1 Central Park West, New York, NY

Phone: 212-299-3900

I'm not the biggest fan of Jean Georges restaurants but I have to admit, Jean Georges is a very savvy businessman! While most top rated/high end restaurants chose not to participate in NYC restaurant week even during recession times like this, and especially for dinner, Jean Georges offered New Yorkers and visitors some of his best restaurants (ie JoJo, Perry Street, Nougatine) for the restaurant week line up. Gan and myself would probably not give Nougatine a chance if given a choice since we have been to a few of JG's restaurants already, and there are simply too many other interesting places to eat in the city. Their participation in Restaurant week is certainly the main reason Nougatine made it into our culinary resume.

Nougatine is the bar room and less formal dining room of Jean Georges restaurant at the Trump Plaza International. I usually find these bar room restaurants more worth it since you always get the food from the same kitchen as the more expensive dining room but for less money. I was pretty impressed with the restaurant week menu served at Nougatine, despite its limited choices. There's no options as in many other restaurants, which makes it easy for the diners but puts more pressure on the kitchen staffs for its execution. All the dishes were executed flawlessly; slowly cooked salmon was done perfectly on the slightly rare side as should be with fish dishes, roasted organic chicken was amazing as the main highlight of the line up and warm Valrhona chocolate cake was delicious. The chicken dish was so surprisingly good that I am still thinking about it. It's a perfect hint to restaurants who aim to impress that sometimes exotic ingredient and complicated preparation takes away focus from the main criteria people choose to eat at one place over another - taste.

Amuse bouche -- salmon sashimi with pickled cherry vinaigrette, toasted sourdough, chilled tomato gazpacho. This was ok, thought the amuse bouche could do without the toasted sourdough.

RESTAURANT WEEK MENU -- Watermelon and Goat Cheese. This appetizer was pretty refreshing, though the temperature should've been chilled lower prior to serving for better effect. I think I'll try making it at home next time

RESTAURANT WEEK MENU -- Slowly Cooked Salmon with Corn Pudding and Tomato Salad. The color pallette matches the flavor profile. Vibrant!

RESTAURANT WEEK MENU -- Roasted Organic Chicken with Green Bean and New Onion Compote, Spice Jus. surprisingly amazing. One of the best chicken dishes I have had.

RESTAURANT WEEK MENU -- Warm Valrhona Chocolate Cake with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Gan ordered the 5 course tasting menu which included Tuna Tartare, foie gras brule (not quite sure whether it was intentionally spelled this way but that's what's on their menu), red snapper, grilled beef tenderloin and dessert tasting. Everything was adequate but the grilled beef was slightly disappointing. We weren't impressed by the grilled beef at Nougatine. A high caliber with aspirations of Michelin stars restaurant should be able to cook red meat properly!

Overall, the $35 restaurant week menu were amazing value and the $68 tasting menu were sufficiently pleasing. Because of restaurant week, we now have experienced Nougatine and think it's worthy of us going back there again to try their other regular menu!

TASTING MENU -- Tuna Tartare, Avocado, Spicy Radish, Ginger Marinade

TASTING MENU -- Foie Gras Brule, Cherry Yuzu Compote -- this was excellent. I wanted more!

TASTING MENU -- Red Snapper, Lily-Bulb Radish Salad, White Sesame and Lavender

TASTING MENU -- Grilled Beef Tenderloin, Garlic, Parsley and Chili

TASTING MENU -- Dessert Tasting

Happy Yaokuis!!

Nougatine on Urbanspoon


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