Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Gordon Ramsay at The London, New York

We just spent a week in New York during US Open. While my husbands biggest pleasure during the trip is the tennis, mine is researching, selecting and finally eating at restaurants with (supposedly) fabulous food and wine.
This years trip we started with a night at Gordon Ramsay at The London. My cousin had dinner there earlier this spring and have been raving about the exceptional service, food, and ambiance. A must try for us after all the praise, plus the fact that we had not been to a Gordon Ramsay restaurant before.
Upon arrival we were sent to the bar as our table was not quite ready yet. 35 minutes later we were finally seated in a half empty dining room. The dining room is made up of one single rectangular room, elegantly decorated, and with high ceilings. It might seem intimate to some, having a limited number of tables, but to us it felt like we were at a wedding party. I like when a restaurant has something to break it up. Be it partition walls, pillars, or booths to create the feeling of separate areas.
After being presented with menu and wine list the first amuse bouche arrived. A fantastic Tuna Tartare and Avocado in a crunchy cone. The tuna tartare was short of amazing. One of the best I have had. Simply fresh tuna with just a few other, not over shadowing, ingredients to showcase its freshness and beauty.
After our order was taken a plate with small nibbles of Parmesan Crusted Cherry Tomato, a Veal Cube (of some kind), and Mushroom Filled Pastry Bread was brought to our table, all very tasty as well.
After this, bread and butter was placed at the table and a final amuse bouche to clean the palate before our ordered meal appeared. A Lemon Sorbet on top of Watermelon, Tomato and, if I remember correctly, Grapefruit. Refreshing and cleansing indeed.
My first course arrived shortly after this, Curried Scallop on a Cauliflower Puree. The scallop, lightly dusted with curry would have been perfect was it not for the fact that it was halved and therefore was a smidge overdone when being pan seared. Otherwise a lovely dish with great combination of flavors.
My husband has the Foie Gras on top of shaved plum and a green bean salad on the side. Good but not great was his verdict.
I had the Lamb with Truffle Dusted Potato, Zucchini and Tomato in Lamb Juice. This was a big disappointment. I ordered it to chef's recommendation (medium rare), and although it came out close to that specification, slightly overdone, the meat was rather tough and tasteless. I know lamb can be difficult, but nothing a five star restaurant can't handle...
My husband had the Suckling Pig Tenderloin and was only so impressed as well.
Time for dessert! Hoping things would get better I had the Vahlrona Chocolate Fondant with banana ice cream and a frothy vanilla drink, and my husband had the Chocolate Mousse with Ginger Ice cream. Both of them very good (mine was a step better). Satisfying enough for a chocoholic...
At the very end of the meal a cart of caramels, chocolates and other sweet treats was brought to our table for selecting a few pieces. We were all but hungry at this point but had to try a few of them of course. A nice end to the meal.

Overall this was a decent meal but we were disappointed with the overall impression we got from the promptness of seating, the food, the "ball room" setting, etc. The highlights of the meal were the tuna tartare and the wine we ordered, Vision Cellar Gary's Vineyard Pinot Noir (a great pinot that I can not recall the vintage of). Other than that it was good but far from great...

Have you dined here? If so I would love to hear your thoughts because I am dying to hear that I am wrong and that we just had an "off night"...

Vote for my blog here and help me stay in top 10 on The Blog Top! No longer any need to help me stay in top 10. I need your help to reach top 10 again! Been bumped down to number 11... Get me up there again!!! I miss it...


Anonymous said...

what an atrocity of a review really.

"wedding party", "good but not great", and the best of all, "rather tuff".

You wouldn't know what haute cuisine is even if it hit you right on the forehead, madame.

Victoria said...

My sincerest appology for the "tuff" mishap. It has been corrected. English is not my first language and mistakes happen every now and then...
Obviously you have had a wonderful experience at this restaurant as you think my thoughts are "atrocious". I am very happy on your behalf, but unfortunately I did not paticularly like the ambiance, and the meal as a whole was far from what I expected. As I said, and off night I hope, but I am not going to sugar coat my review when it does not match my experience. I have dined at "haute cuisine" (as you call it) restaurants all over the world, and our night at Gordon Ramsey unfortunately did not make it to my "memorable meals list" and I do appologize if that offends you in and way.