bountiful veggie bites at le bernadin


A recent biz dinner with hubby and colleagues brought us to Le Bernadin in NYC on a recent Saturday night. My impression from a prior resto-week lunch years ago was that the top-rated venue was chic and classic but with food that did not wow (this level of culinary disappointment can, in fact, happen).  My preconceived notions were quickly reversed within seconds of munching on the home-made buckwheat rolls and sublime starters.

Let us begin with the ‘ almost raw’ course that included mainly seafood. I opted for the mesclun salad, which featured “Market Herbs and Vegetables with Balsamic – Shallot Vinaigrette,” according to their menu online. I dunno what magic they sprinkled on those carrots, endives and mushrooms, but the natural flavor of the fresh produce combined with a coating that resembled more of a marinade than a dressing sang a sonata in my mouth.

I dare not forget to mention the bountiful bread basket that included a whole grain buckwheat roll (my pick) in addition to those made with tomato fennel, poppy seed, and focaccia, among others.


Next came a dish from the ‘barely touched’ course; the “Warm Artichoke Panaché; Vegetable Risotto, Lemon Emulsion” was not to be missed. A fan of finely sliced artichoke hearts bathed in a citrus sauce came topped with creamy risotto.


Next arrived the personalized main course made meat-free just for me: hearty threads of  fettuccini in a truffle oil cream sauce with asparagus and thumb-sized slices of black truffles. Three words and I say no more: To Die For.


Finally arrived the pinnacle of every meal: the desert.  The fall-themed item offered a seasonal option: “Lightly Poached Cranberries, Spiced Squash, Maple Mousse, Cranberry Sorbet.”

Hubby opted for chocolate-on-chocolate: Chocolate Mille-Feuille with Caramelized Phyllo, Thyme Gelée, Salted Milk Chocolate Ice Cream.

Of course, amuse bouches arrived between every meal, and after dessert: mini French macaroons and hand-crafted chocolates.


The meal lasted for four luscious hours spent sitting and conversing without the interruption of a child: loveliness indeed.

A final shout out goes to the delicate flower arrangements: spider mums on the table and calla lilies in the women’s bathroom-sweet, refreshing touches.

spiderflowers lala liiys

We rolled ourselves outta there  stuffed to the seams and prepared to do a double-length work out the next day.