F&F: BLT Bar & Grill

July 29th, 2010 by Vanilla Ice

PX This presents THE F&F REVIEW

Hey, sorry we couldn’t make it to "Friends&Family," we were out of town/ had to work/ not invited. We’re really glad we finally managed to come by, though— it’s so nice to see you!
What’s that? You would still like us to take the time to fill out the F&F survey, because you’d love to take advantage of all our vast experience, knowledge, insight, and expertise as long as we’re already here? Because you invited 75 people to F&F, and afterward all you got was 41 "Congrats[es]!" 22 "Awesome[s]!" 3 "Ciao[s]!" and 9 "Best of luck[s]!" ?
Of course, we’d be honored. Oh ha, yesss, we’ll be honest— brutally honest even, ha ha! After all, that’s what friends & family are for!
No no please, don’t send anything more, we’re stuffed, we can’t breathe, you’ll have to roll us out of here, ha ha ha… !


BLT Bar & Grill

What was your first impression?
Wow, the hostesses (an army of them!) are really friendly.
And also: Huh, this is… different? Especially for this part of town.

Please rate the Bar:
Not bad. Spacious, clean, commodious. If I lived and/or worked in the area, I’d come here.

Please rate the drinks/ cocktails/ wine:
Fine, I suppose. The cocktails list is relatively diverse, if not exactly inventive. Odd choice of "calls" mentioned in the recipes, though. Then again, it’s a W— so there is that.
Oh damn, I forgot to look at the wine list (the space isn’t quite conducive to it). Then again, it’s a W— so I’m sure I’ve already seen the list in some other hotel.

Please rate the Dining Room:
I gather there must be a whole other dining room upstairs, because the "dining room" downstairs is rather small (the bar takes up most of the expanse).
But as for downstairs, I rather like it. Personally, I find the artwork doodles on the walls really appealing (very Mama Shelter. Or ya know, Trattoria Bagutta maybe).

Please rate the BOH:
Very good. Sorry, Laurent! I was wondering if I’d detect your umm "absence," but uh… no, I don’t. Granted, the menu is hardly creative, but the execution is outstanding (particularly for a place that just opened). It’s probably not everybody’s cup of tea— if you only dine out once a month or less, it’s likely not the place for you. If, however, you eat out nearly every day, it’s perfect. Any place that has the balls to serve sandwiches for dinner is OK by me. (Then again, it’s a hotel… and a W no less, so maybe I’m giving the BOH too much credit for their courageousness). But seriously though, I don’t know how many nights I’ve said to myself, "I wish there were a nice quality place where I could go and just have a really good sandwich (and no, I don’t mean a fucking burger) and a solid first-rate drink. In a cool environment." I defy you to come up with a place. E-mail me if you think of one.

How was the staff?
Very good. Overall, enthusiastic, proficient, and conscientious. Everyone. Even the busboy.

What did you eat?/ How was the food?
Deviled Eggs with Tabasco : Scrumptious. Fresh. Flavorful. And not a bad price at all for three (overstuffed) halves.
Caesar Salad : Oh, be quiet. Caesar Salad is a great way to evaluate a BOH’s standards. You would be amazed (or not) how many places can fuck up a Caesar Salad, and badly. Especially hotels.
But, this one passes the test with flying colors. I mean, are those actually finely chopped white anchovies mixed into the dressing? I was starting to think they threw out that recipe in all the culinary schools.
Even the croutons are good.
Tuna Tartare : Yah, are you seeing the pattern in the menu here? Whatever, it’s delicious. Very fresh. A little overkill on the ice platter maybe, but I can live with it.
Strip Steak : Very good. Nice quality, tender, perfectly cooked. Tasty "cognac green-peppercorn sauce." Pretty fairly priced at $34.
Sauteed Creamy Spinach : Not so creamy actually. The only item that didn’t quite impress me. Decent flavor but too-mushy texture. I mean, come on— anybody who orders creamed spinach is obviously not afraid of cream, butter, or calories. Don’t get all scaredy-cat and wishy-washy with the stuff. Better to offer the options of "with cholesterol" or "without" instead.

What did you like?
It was pretty much all satisfactory.

What did you dislike?
It’s sooooo far away! What the hell is Albany Street?

What was your last impression?
Oooh, Paul Liebrandt! Third time now…

Would you come back?
If it weren’t so far away, I’d probably come once a week. No, seriously.

Thank you, and hope to see you soon!
Thanks, it was a pleasure.



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3 Responses to “F&F: BLT Bar & Grill”

  1. Dishwasher Says:

    If it’s a W hotel, how come they didn’t make it a Jean-George Bar & Grill? Lol ;)

  2. Ben Davis Says:

    Well, it’s only a block away from Annie and I, so there’s another reason to come back!!

  3. abbe Says:

    hi Ben!

    good point.

    hey, we missed you last night…


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