July’s Restaurant of the Month: Nougatine
As the heat takes over NYC during the summer months, the last thing New Yorkers want to do is dine on heavy, filling foods (save that for the winter, please!). Even with our quest for healthier options, we still want our dining experience to be memorable and delicious, correct? Here is where Jean-Georges Nougatine comes into play!
Nougatine is a hop, skip and a jump away from all of the Glenwood buildings in the West Side, and is best know as being Jean-Georges’ more casual sister restaurant. However, that certainly doesn’t mean the food is anything less than stellar, as they use the same market driven fresh ingredients as JG does in all of his fine dining restaurants! And with the option to dine outdoors on their terrace, steps away from Central Park, it’s a true NYC experience you won’t soon forget!
Have a Drink
While drinks aren’t included in this special lunch tasting menu, be sure to ask your waiter for recommendations of wine pairings! If you’re feeling like a little lunchtime vino, they are absolute pros at this, and will always let you sample before committing. If you’re going for a bit of a healthier lunch, stick with one of their refreshing signature juices, such as the Organic Ruby Red Juice, which is a blend of freshly pressed carrot, beet, orange, lemon, and young ginger for $14.
You can certainly dine a la carte, but if I can share a local tip, it would be this: Go for lunch Monday through Saturday, and order the prix-fixe menu which is offered from noon until three. For only $38, you can get an appetizer, entree, and dessert – a true steal, considering that’s about the average cost to go out to eat in NYC, anyway.
It’s rare I say that you can’t go wrong when ordering at a restaurant, but I will say it with 100% certainty in this case! Everything I’ve tasted at Nougatine has exceeded my expectations in freshness, flavor, presentation, and service.
Manhattan’s West Side vs. East SideBelieve it or not, there are quite a few differences between the West and East Sides of Manhattan! From family-style mom and pop shops to vibrant nightlife, which neighborhood best suits your lifestyle?
Get Started with an Appetizer
While one might not normally associate summer dining with soups, by all means, do yourself a good one and start with the Sweet Pea Soup. It’s topped with a simple sprinkling of sourdough croutons and Parmesan cheese. It truly tastes like summer. Or, if you want something a bit more filling, try the Tuna Tartare, which is prepared with avocado, spicy radish, and ginger marinade. These starter dishes are also perfect to share and swap with friends!
It’s Entree Time
For your main, you have nine different equally wonderful options to choose from. For meat lovers, give the Veal Milanese a spin, which is prepared with Parmesan, escarole, and lemon. For a vegetarian option, go with the Fresh Spaghetti with asparagus and morel mushrooms (this is probably the best spaghetti I’ve ever had, sorry Little Italy!) Yet even though it’s pasta, it’s prepared in such a way that you don’t leave the table feeling stuffed – even after your third course of dessert!
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Save Room for Dessert!
You have two dessert options here: chocolate or not chocolate. The former is the signature Jean-Georges Warm Chocolate Cake, topped with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream. If you’re a chocolate lover, I think it’s a no-brainer which one to pick here. However, if chocolate is not your jam, go with the Citrus Pavlova, completed with satsuma orange cream and blood orange sorbet. I enjoy pairing these with a cup of hot water with lemon, divine!
Good To Know
If you can’t make it for the incredible lunch special, fear not! Nougatine offers a brunch, full dinner, and innovative and chic cocktails at their bar – it makes for a memorable date night. Also, Jean Georges has an array of cookbooks for the DIY home chef. I don’t fancy myself a cook in the slightest of the word, but was gifted “Home Cooking With Jean-Georges” by a friend who knows how much I love his restaurants, and have to say, the recipes are pretty simple!