The Breslin Bar and Dining Room
We’d follow Iron Chef April Bloomfield and her Spotted Pig cohort Ken Friedman just about anywhere–the Spotted Pig’s Gnudi, even after all these years (almost six!), remains one of our absolute favorite, most crave-able dishes in town–so it was only a matter of time before we headed over to their new venture, The Breslin Bar and Dining Room in NYC. Twice over the holiday break we braved the feezingness and made our way to The Breslin, located within the fabulous, spanking-new lobby of the Ace Hotel, to dig into some serious plates of meaty delights. And twice we left with full bellies, big smiles, and vows to return as soon as we can.
The Breslin’s Dining Room
The dining room itself at The Breslin is perfect: warm and comfortable, filled with fun touches and twinkling lights. The servers are all hipster-attractive and totally professional. The clientele range from the expected young foodies and scenesters to the less expected table of elderly out-of-towners (presumably staying upstairs at the Ace) and tucking into the gloriously gluttonous Stuffed Pig’s Foot for two. And the food? We tried six dishes over two meals, and five were full-on wonderful winners.
The Breslin’s Menu
The starters we’ve sampled have all been superb. The Fried Head Cheese comes in gamey, breaded cubes of animal face laid on top of a light and eggy sauce gribiche. Call it cheek-in nuggets. Also interesting–and probably the lightest dish on the menu at The Breslin, were the Hog Island Sweetwater Oysters with dill pickle sauce. The bright, cucumber-y essence of the dip is an excellent companion to the fresh and briny bivalves. Best of all was the spectacular Salt Cod Brandade, the fish tossed with a chewy bread salad, with dried chilies supplying the heat and parsley supplying the cool. An outstanding dish.
The only disappointment during our meals was the Braised Shin of Beef, and only because about half of the meat was surprisingly stringy and flavorless… or, at least stringy and flavorless compared to the more tender, more marrowy bites. The Chargrilled Lamb Burger, fortunately, suffered no such problems: juicy and dense with a sharp feta bite and near-brilliant when slathered with the accompanying cumin mayonnaise which, by the way, also worked quite well with the appropriately crunchy Thrice Cooked Chips.
All the desserts sounded heavenly, but the choice for us was obvious: Sticky Toffee Pudding, which was spot-on delicious, both for all the reasons we always love this dish–that incredible combination of sweet and smooth and gooey and warm and cold and cakey–as well for the inspired addition of crunchy Turkish coffee bits into the mix. Next time we visit The Breslin (and there will be a next time), we have the Chocolate Stout Syllabub in our sights.
The Breslin Bar and Dining Room Details
The Breslin Bar and Dining Room is located on West 29th Street between Broadway and Fifth Avenue in NYC. Although there is a separate entrance, the dining room is connected to lobby of the Ace Hotel, through which you walk and admire, to visit the restrooms. The Breslin is open for breakfast, lunch, brunch, dinner and drinks, every day from 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 a.m. For a more detailed breakdown of what’s served when, as well as complete menus, please visit the Breslin Bar and Dining Room website.
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