Monday, February 1, 2010
This year for restaurant week we figured we'd check out a "classic" on the NY scene, and finally go to Tao. This restaurant, now in year 10 or perhaps even more, is still as "scene-y" as ever. Thanks to the over the top decor, I can understand why it brings in tourists and B&T folks alike. We enjoyed our pre-dinner cocktails, I was drinking "Taotinis", a raspberry fruity concoction that was both tasty and strong. However, we did not like the rather rough bar bill, or the fact that we had to wait almost 40 minutes past our reservation time. We also did not like the fact that people were obviously skipping us- seriously? Just not cool in this town.
However, seating issues and expensive bar bill aside, we sat down to dinner, and really liked the prix-fixe menu. For appetizers, I had pork pot stickers, and Ryan had crispy tuna sashimi. The pork potstickers were in a really nice spicy and sweet sauce, and I was surprised by the large portions. Ry's tuna was tasty, although I thought the fish itself was overpowered by the "crisp" and wasabi. Our entrees were also quite large, and we ended up needing to take some to go! I had the kung pao chicken, which was tasty, but not spicy enough for me. Ryan had the wasabi-crusted filet, which was cooked to perfection and very tasty, but the wasabi crust was grainy, and luckily easily scraped off.
For dessert, I had a banana bread pudding which was creamy, light, and really flavorful. Ryan had the chocolate spring rolls which were incredibly rich. We enjoyed them both, and again, had food to spare!
Ryan ordered a sake tasting flight that he raved about. I don't drink sake, alas, but will have to trust his opinion.
Our waiter was friendly and helpful, and made me forget a little about the hostess and long wait situation.
The decor is pretty ridiculous, complete with a 15-foot tall buddha fountain.
Overall, we enjoyed ourselves- but found there were flaws to our evening. However, for restaurant week experiences, we ranked it very high, and I think we would both be willing to visit again. This time, we'll know to bribe the hostesses!