Putting on the Ritz

February 1st, 2013 § 0 comments

HG has never enjoyed pricey, upscale, high cuisine restaurants. In many decades of dining, only four have given HG pleasure commensurate with the expenditure. One, Le Pavillon, in New York is long gone, but memories of their fillets of smoked eel topped with a horseradish-infused whipped cream will linger on the HG palate forever. Another, the Connaught Hotel Restaurant in London offered the quintessential civilized English dining experience — perfect Dover Sole (de-boned at the table), Stilton and Port to finish (with a cigar service for those who indulged – and HG did just that). Alas, the Connaught has changed so much that it is unrecognizable. Two, both in New York, are alive and well. One is Le Bernardin and the other is the Four Seasons Restaurant in the Seagram Building. Le Bernardin is flawless, simply the best seafood in the world prepared with flair and imagination. Fabulous wine list supervised by a renowned sommelier. Very, very expensive but not insane. Lunch Prix Fixe is $72 (three courses) and Dinner Prix Fixe is $127 (four courses). Tasting menu is more extravagant — $237 with paired wines. HG was a frequent diner at the Four Seasons during HG’s New York career. The Pool Room is the most beautiful restaurant space in the world. Curiously, New York big shots never ate there. They chose the more austere Grill Room. Menu is the same in both rooms. The Four Seasons used to be expensive but affordable for tax deductible meals. Now, the prices have gone through the roof. An appetizer of Spaghetti with Poached Egg and Black Truffles is $75. Grilled shrimp appetizer is $38. Venison, lamb chops, bison and steak are about $75. If you want to sample Four Seasons cuisine without going broke, take a seat at the bar. The Bar Menu is delicious and affordable (comparatively).

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