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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The View

Discovering where to eat can be an adventure all its own.  When searching for a Christmas gift for my sister, I came across a website for The View restaurant in the Marriott on Broadway in New York.  I fell in love and so I did what most people do and gave my sister a gift I wanted for myself.  I then told the Mr. who turned around and gave me a gift card to the same place.  Love.  A many splendid thing indeed.

I could hardly wait, but even when I opened the gift, I knew I would save it for "something special."  Well, what's more special than Valentine's Day?  But, wait a minute, I cannot stand eating in a restaurant on a holiday.  The menu is usually limited, the crowds overwhelming and the service may be poor so when I used Open Table to make a reservation, I realized February 15 is a holiday in itself and booked our table.

The Mr. drove slowly through one of the really fun Northeast snow storms we have been having lately and it took us quite awhile to reach our hotel.  Though we could have stayed in the Marriott, I found us a room at a nearby Hilton for a fraction of the cost.  We valeted the car, checked in and power walked to the Marriott.  

The express elevator takes guests directly to the 48th floor in a glass walled lift that reminded me of Willy Wonka.  The blur included a greenhouse roofed gym with guests working out.  I feel a brief flicker of gluttony as the bell announces our arrival.

We are directed to a waiting area with a number of other guests and it takes a moment to adjust that the path of flooring that includes the tables is slowly moving in a circle around the windows.  We are in the stationery center when our hostess directs us down one flight of stairs.  We were waiting in the lounge which includes a buffet dinner and separate bar area.  Our reservations were for the dining room.

We are seated almost immediately and the dining room is fairly empty though more guests arrive throughout our meal and is mostly full by the time we leave.  Yes, as tourists we struggled to take a flattering "selfie" with the celllphone camera, but our server smiled and took several photos of us while making us laugh.  I embrace being a tourist whenever possible.  The acknowledgment simply makes it easier for everyone.

A Winter Pear Cosmopolitan to start.  Yes, it was $17.  It was also fabulous and amazing.  Smooth, clear pear taste without the firewater afterburn of alcohol.  A dangerous cocktail for a lightweight who may risk ordering a second and then not be able to function.

We look through the Prix Fixe menu though I have already previewed it online at The View NYC Restaurant's website and am well aware of my choices.  I thought the Mr. would venture out and try the venison as he is an avid hunter.  "I don't want to eat farmed venison," he claimed.

So, to start...

The Crab Cake

I was able to fight my way in for a sample forkful.  It was a perfect ratio of crab to binder and I swirled mine through the mildly heated horseradish sauce.  Heaven.

For me, the Parsnip Bisque.  Described on the menu as having white miso and honeyed chestnut crema.  I'll be honest here, I have no benchmark for those flavor descriptions/ingredients.  What I can share without any doubt is the soup was delicious, smooth, the correct temperature throughout and I finished my portion with a shadow of the bisque remaining on the dish.

Main Course

Yes, the Mr. ordered the chicken.  Listed as:  

Roasted Breast and Leg Confit, Fregola Sarda, Parsley Root, Porcini Madeira Sauce 

He was not overly excited about the Fregola Sarda.  We had asked our server about it and the description was "couscous like, but larger."  The Mr. would have preferred a risotto if he had a choice, but he did enjoy the chicken and some of my carrots.

For me:

Salsify and Onion Pot Pie, Heirloom Carrots, Grape Mustard

I will go around the plate.  The tenderloin was absolutely cooked to medium-rare as requested, almost fork tender, quite thick, succulent and truly tasted of beef.  The sauce was decadent and used with every bite.  Mini onion pot pie was not only the cutest item on the plate, the crispy top broke with the side of the fork and yielded soft, warm onions...I will dream of them.  The carrots were just crisp enough and the Mr.'s favorite part of my dinner.

We watched the ever changing skyline as much as the weather permitted.  Billowing clouds of snow would kick up every so often and interfere.  Our inner voyeurs were revealed as we looked in the open windows of hotels and yes, saw people perhaps getting ready for their evening, in various states of undress.  Maybe they wanted to be seen.

Yes, that is the Empire State Building in the very background of the photo.  Landmarks are the proof of a tourists visit.


A classic New York cheesecake for the Mr.  Fresh strawberries and a sauce that was not coyingly sweet, but rather actually tasted like the fresh fruit.

Banana and Pear Jaconde for me.

The accompanying caramel ice cream resting in a bed of what reminds me of Carvel ice cream cake crunchies are all memorable and fun.  I finish the ice cream and also thoroughly enjoy the sugared and flamed banana slice.

What's next on the agenda?  We stroll through Times Square of course and though the wet snow flakes and bustling wind keep the tourists moving, we still want to take our photos and laugh at the dressed up characters.  

Next up, a visit to Madame Tussaud's wax museum and the camera battery begins to fade.  We retrace our steps to the hotel and still feel a bit of bloat from our indulgent meal.  Fed Well and content, we will continue our culinary NYC adventure the next day.

View Restaurant & Lounge on Urbanspoon