Wednesday, July 29, 2009

NYC - Quintessence

Believe it or not, I am still posting food from Day One of our trip! We went to Quintessence Thursday evening and these are pics from our meal that night. One of the things with trying to sample as much food as possible is that you rarely leave yourself time to get hungry. Maybe 'sampling' should have been the key word here.. however, it really was more like 'eating' as much food as possible! When you get to new places, taste so much delicious new raw foods, especially when this is your passion.. creating such foods.. well, it's hard not to go overboard and just enjoy everything.
It was late and we kind of closed the place, but the staff was really friendly. They were great and the ambiance here was great also, cozy. It was darker than it seems in the picture with candles.. and the waiter let us take a quick peek in the kitchen. I love seeing kitchens. I didn't take a picture but it was narrow, all the dishes are prepped here but they have another kitchen and storage downstairs where I imagine all the dehydrating and lots of the work is done also. That's the thing about creating raw foods.. it takes a lot of space, time, labor.. and as far as I have seen it's always a labor of love. Too much goes it it to be otherwise.

The dishes shown above and below are the Appetizers we chose. We were talking had started eating already before we remembered to take this is close, a few bites in. : )

Above is the Spinach Onion Ravioli with Pesto Sauce a rich creamy spinach, onion, walnut and pine nut pate folded in paper thin turnip skins topped with pesto sauce finished with a sprinkle of black pepper.
This was really good, the sauces were great, the filling was also.. but the turnip wrapper wasnt reallypaper thin.. and although it was quite good, thinner wrappers or marinating them would have really made a difference. That being said, the tastes were great and I would happily order htis dish again another time.

Below is the Stuffed Fofu -Our silken mock tofu stuffed with a succulent filling of nappa cabbage, shitake, seaweed and scallion marinated in a savory ginger cilantro sauce. Topped with thinly sliced marinated shitake mushrooms.
Wow - Mock Tofu. lol I had seen a recipe for this in one of Matthew Kenneys books and thought about trying to make it just for the fun of it. & I liked Quinessences take on it, with the stuffed vegetables& mushrooms..but the taste is what I expected the taste to be, kind of bland..but then again, that is what tofu is. ..except that tofu kind of absorbs the sauces and this really more coats itself with sauce. still, considering, a brilliant attempt. & the sauce under it was really, really good - Really good! It was a fun and happy experience.

The Entrees:
Muquecca - a new dish on the menu - "Whether you are a Brazillian or not, this dish will instantly transport you to Brazil" says Andre, our server from Brazil. An array of marinated vegetables and mushrooms drenched in an authentic rich mouth watering sauce. Served with our fantastic butternut garlic-herb bread.
I was curious to try this because I wanted to try making a moqueca before. This is a traditional Brazillian seafood stew and there are many variations to it. This was my least favorite to be honest, but that could just be personal preference. I did however love the garlic bread!

It's a nice change to see bread that is made into a small loaf and cut. Not that I mind bread make flattened out into sheets, which is much more common. It's just more unusual to find it this way.
This was extremely garlicy!!& I love garlic! It was made primarily of butternut squash I think and pine nuts and lots of garlic.

This is the side salad served with the Mexican platter coming up which was soo good! & too big to have the salad served on the same plate. That's one great thing at Quintesence, the dishes are big, they serve a lot of food with each.

Here it is, my favorite of the night The Mexican Platter - a delicious enchilada, a sweet corn golden flax tortilla roll filled with "refried beans", "cheese", tomato and lettuce. Drenched with mole sauce and finished with a dollop of "sour creme". Paired with out #1 seller Taco with Guajillo chili sauce and scallion wild rice.
This was all good! The enchillada had 2 tortillas overlapped and wrapped around the filling. The wrapper was really good, and I am usually least interested in the wrapper although it's the most work to make these, the fillings were delicious and the sauces also. In fact, the mole sauce was the best I've ever had! The taco was delicious and the sauce served with it was Really hot. I loved that!! Nice to get good hot and spicy raw food.. great flavor!
Quintessence makes great sauces!

We also ordered the California Pizza - Chipotle cheese, pesto sauce, avocado, red bell pepper, sprouts, carmellized onion and sour cream. This was so loaded and we were getting so full! But it was so good and we ate it anyway! Delicious!

However, we were so full we didn't order dessert. ..and we kept wanting to come back to try the Indian platter and Biryani and more.. but we didn't have the time to return, we had so many other places on our agenda to see. I guess I will just have to come back to NYC one day soon!


malilies said...

I went there in May when I visited NYC. I love Quintessence. I had the Indian platter and loved it :D Yo should definitely try it when you go back.

Robin 'Keiko' Gregory said...

Thanks Malilies, I will definitely have to try it whenever I get back to NYC. Indian food raw is something i have been giving some thought to - I am amazed we missed that one.. but there was just so much to try!!
Appreciate the recommendation! Hugs.