As I round out my 3rd year living in NYC, there are a few restaurants that have moved from my "Must Try" list to my "Seriously, Why Haven't I Gone There Yet?!" list. Per Se. Le Bernardin. Minetta Tavern. After last night, I can finally move the latter to the "Been There, Done That" list, and oh what an experience it was!
We walked in the door around 5:15 and the front bar was already pretty crowded. The hostess assured us that many of the patrons around the bar were just waiting to be shown to their reserved tables at 5:30, so we caught the bartender's attention and told him we needed 2 seats at the bar. They have a system in place where the bartenders control who sits at the bar to eat based on first come, first serve. No sketchy hovering for us, we would get the first 2 seats that opened. Brilliant!
As soon as the clock struck 5:30 (can we talk about how absurd it is that we were having dinner at 5:30 by the way? Early birds? US!?) 2 people got up and we had our seats. This is where the real adventure began. Regardless of the fact that the menu looked amazing, we had tunnel vision for the Bone Marrow and the Black Label Burger. We decided to skip the $15 cocktails to save some cash, and we anxiously awaited the arrival of the food.
I have to mention that there were 3 bartenders manning the bar, and they were all SO incredibly nice and helpful. We observed as they poured some mean-looking cocktails and waited on everyone in the bar. They were friendly, bubbly and all had huge smiles on their faces. I really appreciated this, and it made for a fantastic vibe.
As the plate of bones approached us, I began to have second thoughts. Could I do this? I mean, I'm an adventurous eater, but was I really about to eat the goo straight out of the bone?! My stomach did a few flip flops as the plate was placed in front of us. There was no turning back now.
Then the burger arrived. I have heard many say that the Minetta Tavern Black Label Burger is the best in the city (Rev, care to weigh in?) so we knew we had to try it. We decided to split the $26 hunk of beef on a bun and when it arrived my first thought was that it was TEENY tiny. Since we were splitting it, I'd say it was about 4 bites per half. Not nearly enough burger for the expensive price tag.
I plan to return to Minetta Tavern to try the rest of the menu, and maybe have a Black Label Burger all to myself!
Okay, let's hear it, what are your thoughts on Bone Marrow? Love it? Hate it? Repulsed by the thought of it (mom)? I'm planning to have the Bone Marrow at Beauty & Essex tomorrow night and at either Landmarc, Blue Ribbon or Prune later this week (suggestions welcome.)
-The Fabulous Foodie
PS- Check out this post on the Bone Marrow craze on MMMelody's blog