you know as well as i do, there are tons of reviews out there for restaurants in manhattan (which is why i typically stick to williamsburg). i had a special experience at nomad this week though. the ambiance, service and most important, the sumptuous flavors in the food, made for an unforgettable evening. we kicked things off in the library. it's a very intimate feeling space having books that line the walls and overstuffed lounge chairs and sofas in plush fabrics. it's tucked at the back of the restaurant and you get there by walking through the main dining room and past the bar proper. after you've soaked in the rich colors of the leather bound books and grandious feeling of the double height ceiling, you'll notice the cocktail menu is quite extensive. after tasting a few that had gone around, i can say each was as the delicious as the one prior. my favorite being the headless horseman, in case you're looking for a suggestion.
we were fortunate enough to dine with someone who actually works at nomad so as you can imagine, the amount of food we were able to sample was incredible. being with good friends, we all decided we'd share everything and i was glad we did! before our starters, a decadent fruit de mer was sent out. each bite contained an oyster, succulent piece of lobster or taste of crab. it was the perfect introduction to the meal. after that, we ordered the tagliatelle, bone marrow, cauliflower and tuna tartare. there's a soft spot in my belly for pasta so i'd have to say the tagliatelle was my favorite. the scratch made noodles had been rolled thin to perfection; there's really nothing like good fresh pasta. the marrow was also surprisingly bold. it was done almost like a sausage stuffing but had much richer flavor and just required a taste before your eyes do that thing where they sink a little and then roll to one side (yes, that good).
next, we were onto the entrees. i had heard so many amazing things about the chicken (i recall it won a best of year award from esquire magazine), i pleaded with the group to get one for the table. all were in agreement, it was a must have. this special dish is actually presented to you whole before they carve it for serving. upon sight, you kind of think, ok, it's a chicken with lots of pretty garnishes. when you taste your first piece though, you realize this is something special. they somehow bake all of the luxurious, rich flavors underneath the skin and keep the insides of the breast perfectly tender and juicy. i know ordering chicken doesn't sound like the most exciting thing to do but trust me, you've never had chicken prepared the nomad way. they even serve up the dark meat in a gravy type sauce delivered in its own mini cast iron dish. i can even talk about the other entrees after describing the chicken. we had duck and warm lobster and don't get me wrong, they were great but the chicken was on a whole separate level.
we had definitely had our fill after we finished the entrees. we perused the dessert menu and thought we'd just share one for the table. subsequently six desserts showed up. delight : ) my two favorites were the milk and honey and the warm brioche and pear but you can't go wrong with any of them.
the real treat came at the end of the meal when we got to go downstairs and see the kitchen. i was amazed at how immaculate and efficient the space was. you could tell each soldier had their mission as tasks were being carried out in militant fashion. they had a prep station for salads, sides and room service for the hotel, a pastry station and just four guys cooking on the range to crank out everyone's entrees. it was clear this team has a passion for what's coming out of their kitchen. i also loved seeing the prized truffle resting in it's own glass jar atop a pile of risotto. maybe next time i'll get to sample a little of that too ; )
what an enjoyable experience, every moment and touchpoint was well thought out and delicious. brian and cc especially, thank you and happy holidays!!!