On a recent weekend night, a disastrous attempt at having dinner at Landmarc in the Time Warner Center resulted in an impromptu visit to Bar Boulud. Let me set the scenario before I get into the Bar Boulud review. The Time Warner Center Landmarc is essentially New York City's Rainforest Cafe...true mall dining at its finest. It was an absolute zoo, there were tables crammed into every square inch of available space, and the hosts and bartenders clearly hate their lives. I'm pretty sure they would have asked us to have dinner on the floor if the place got any busier. Needless to say, we closed out our bar tab and got the cuss out of there. Desperately looking for a civilized meal and a drink, we wandered over to Bar Boulud, sure that a Friday night walk-in would illicit some French snobbery. Surprisingly, they politely sent us to the bar for a quick glass of wine and we had a table within ten minutes.
Bar Boulud is Daniel Boulud's "casual bistro", but by Infatuation standards this is a fancy restaurant. It's an older crowd, but a seemingly loose one as the restaurant feels upbeat and lively. The service is first class, but not the slightest bit stiff. As for the food, you'll find a long list of pates and terrines, but otherwise, it's a pretty straightforward bistro. Pay attention to the specials, and the fish selections are spectacular. Salads and starters are tasty, and the wine list is well priced and full of lesser known varietals that will have you taking notes and chasing down bottles online. What‘s the takeaway here? Don't let the French formalities scare you off. Bar Boulud is fantastic.
Betterave et Escarole
This is a roasted beet salad with escarole, hazelnuts, and a soft farm cheese. Beets and hazelnuts are a fantastic combo, and this salad was a nice light way to kick things off.
Recommended by our waiter, this is a coarse pâte made of foie gras, truffle juice, and port. It sounds rich, but it's actually pretty mild. Also I don't know what truffle juice is, but I know I want more of it. There is one thing I should mention - it's a coarse pate meaning it has the consistency of an extremely high end cat food. Not that it bothers me - I'll eat anything ... but it may not be something to give a pâte novice.
An incredible piece of fish with hen of the woods, trumpet, and like five other varieties of mushroom. The fish is delicious and meaty like a cut of pork. An excellent plate of food.
Spaghetti Alla Chitarra with White Truffles
A homemade spaghetti pasta in a parmesan cream sauce with white truffles. Indulgent, expensive, and absolutely amazing. Imagine a fettuccine alfredo that makes you poor.