Why is this a big deal, you ask? Growing up with parents from the Islands, our food was always very well done, raw food was not anywhere near our radar. Well, last night for the first time, I had an oyster!!
All day long my friend Susan has been telling me she's meeting up with friends at the Dream hotel for drinks and that I should come. Earlier with the rain and thunder, I say not happening. Then after my fav pizza and beer, I start looking at my closet, what would I wear. I pull together a fun outfit (7 for All Mankind Denim Dress, tan crocodile print blazer from BCBG, Frye mahogany boots - a bit western meets city casual cool) that's when I make the decision to meet up with her! I feel like that's how I make most of my decisions to go out, if I can back into a good outfit, I'm there! I finally meet her friend NanAma - who I always hear about, and another friend of hers John, a very savvy finance pro!
The Dream Hotel in Meatpacking - other than complete overkill on security guards who have more attitude than patrons, really couldn't get a read on it or what to make of it. It's the Thursday before a holiday weekend. Usually all native New Yorkers are out, but this just felt like a mix of out of towners, some foreigners, some wanna be fabulous overtanned blonde's, there was a woman in a red Herve Leger dress (I have the same dress in Navy). Turns out they were setting up for a Maxim Hot 100 event and that could be why security was heavy.
We end up at Balthazar (because Susan's addicted to the Shepherd's Pie) the normal Maitr D' who knows us isn't there and the new guy seats us in the bar area, hidden away from everything - we don't like it at first. But we'll be served the same food and it's fine, really! The floor manager who put us on the Alist, Robert, and another manager who recognizes us comes over, hugs & kisses fly around and we're treated like royalty. He brings out complimentary glasses of champagne, followed by complimentary raw bar starters which includes the oysters. I decide since I've never had them, I'm going to be adventurous and try it.
On Susan's advice I add lemon, an olive oil and red onion mixture to it, slurp it from the shell. It's so gelatinous, the flavor is not half bad thanks to the stuff I added then NanAma says just swallow, so I grimace a bit and finally manage a swallow..I did it!
The rest of our meal, brandade de morue croquettes, shepherd's pie and lamb tbone steaks, and fries, with which he brings complimentary red wine. Followed by, yup you guessed it, complimentary desserts.
Needless to say we were all on eating well plans, etc., that kind of went out the door yesterday. But today's a new day and we'll do better today.
Dessert from Balthazar..