Perry Street

by Ada on May 18, 2011

This week my Grandmother is visiting from Florida. Whenever she comes we eat well. Very well. We had originally planned to dine at ABC Kitchen, but they were booked all week. I begged the reservationist. Told him I gave really good foot massages. He didn’t flinch. And so, we ended up at Jean-George’s other venture: Perry Street.

The restaurant is situated in a rather desolate area adjacent to the Westside Highway. I guess you would call the area the West Village, though it borders the trendy Meatpacking District.

The decor felt minimalist-chic, a serene compliment to the neighboring Hudson River. The walls and furniture were a muted white, yet gorgeous vases of flower added an element of color.

Upon being seated we were brought individual slices of sourdough bread. The bread had a lovely crust and almost sponge-like interior.

The bread was served with a golden yellow butter and a cute miniature dish of sea salt.

As an amuse bouche we were brought crostini topped with fava beans and fresh herbs. This bite practically screamed spring with its pleasing visual aesthetic and bright taste.

We both selected the Spring Tasting, which came with two small plates and a dessert for twenty eight dollars. Not too shabby for a Jean-George restaurant. My grandmother selected the warm green asparagus salad topped with lemon crumbs and an herb vinaigrette.

The lemon crumb coating provided a nice textural contrast to the silky asparagus. Visually the coating appeared like a blanket, insulating the tender vegetable.

For my first course I selected the arctic char sashimi, which came topped with seaweed tempura and a lemon zest-chili infused olive oil.

The arctic char arrived perfectly fresh, with a glowing pink color. The salty seaweed complimented the buttery fish well and the chili offered a deceivingly spicy flavor.

For her second course my grandmother selected the day’s special of soft-shelled crabs. Soft shelled crabs are one of my favorite foods and these certainly did not disappoint. The shell’s coating had a salty, almost briny taste, that accompanied the perfectly-succulent interior nicely.

For my entree I selected the slowly cooked Scottish salmon with bok choy and white asparagus. The waiter also poured an aromatic green curry sauce over the dish. I am pretty particular about how I like my salmon cooked. There’s nothing worse than overcooked salmon. Luckily this arrived perfectly done, with a pinkened interior that melted in my mouth. The curry sauce felt¬†surprisingly light,cutting the buttery decadence of the salmon.

For dessert I was a tad dismayed to learn they only offered two selections, and neither of them particularly appealed to me. Since they were included with our lunch, however, we selected both.

First up was the classic mousse with carrot cake and a pear-ginger sorbet. The dish was gorgeously presented and the cake offered a nice textural contrast between the light mousse and denser carrot cake.

Next up was a Jean-Georges classic: Warm Valhrona chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream. I had this exact same dessert when dining at Nougatine. While certainly nothing revolutionary, this dish offered a nice interpretation of a classic dessert.

Overall I really enjoyed my experience at Perry Street, from the courteous staff to the interesting dishes. I found the experience superior to that of Nougatine and would definitely return with family or friends. Thank you, Grandma, for a wonderful lunch!


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