To celebrate my brother in laws birthday a group of us met up at Foxwoods Resort and Casino for some gambling, dinner, and laughs.
In the afternoon we spent our time between the slots, roulette tables, and the bowling alley. I definitely did not win but Greg ended up winning a little more than he came with. In the High Rollers (bowling alley) we got some drinks and food and unfortunately. Whenever we are with a group for drinks or food we end up just splitting the check evenly. Lately, I have noticed an upswing in staff asking if we would like separate checks. That definitely wasn't the case at High Rollers. When others in our party asked for a separate check our server had to double check with her manager if that would be okay.
After drinks, we gambled a bit more and made a dinner reservation at Vue 24 for 8:30 pm. A few minutes before our reservation 5 of us met up at the correct elevator and ventured upstairs. The restaurant has a casual elegance to it and we were welcomed to our table. We all ordered a starter, entree, and dessert but I'll only speak to my meal. My start was the Foie Gras. The sear on the foie gras was perfect, the french toast was a large portion, and the blueberry compote wasn't overly sweet. My entree was the Pacific Halibut. This dish was scrumptious! The fish was cooked perfectly and the charred tomato sauce along with the crab meat was an amazing combination of flavors. For dessert, I chose the bananas foster tart. The dessert was good but I was hoping for a bit more punch of passion fruit flavor.
After dinner, we decided to make the long drive home but others stayed a bit longer to test their luck. All in all, it was a fun outing with friends and family
Valentine's Day may not be a big deal in Barcelona but we still enjoyed an amazing dinner and each other's company. The minute reservations became available we reserved our table at the two Michelin star restaurant Disfrutar. Disfrutar also happens to be the number 18 restaurant on the World's 50 Best list. The night of our reservation we checked in and had our coats stored for us. The staff showed us through the restaurant and one of the owners welcomed us inside. Not to compare them to Enigma but both restaurants have this special touch and it was appreciated.
Our table for two had a view of the entire restaurant. The decor is bright, airy, and has the relaxed feel of being on the coast of the Mediterranean. From the sommelier to the servers, to the restroom staff everyone was friendly, helpful, and had a smile on their face. Throughout our meal I appreciated how the staff orchestrated delivering plates as well as removing plates. I don't know if other's would have noticed or if they would have been annoyed but I was happy to see the staff waiting nearby and using slight motions to ask for help, and always two servers at a time.
To start our meal I enjoyed a glass of Cava while Greg tried a glass of red vermouth. Rather than over ordering by enjoying a wine pairing we selected a bottle of El Bandito Cortez 2014. For our meal, we decided to go with the Disfrutar Classic. Our meal was filled with bold flavors, hot dishes, cold dishes, and a variety of textures.
A few standouts from this meal were the frozen passion fruit ladyfinger (bright, cool, and sweet), the black cauliflower with coconut lime bechamel (deep cauliflower flavor with a bright touch), hare and foie gras bonbons (unique, flavorful, and great texture), and the chocolate peppers with oil and salt (creamy, sweet, chocolaty, and a touch of heat).
I loved this meal but it contained a lot of dairy (I took several Lactaid pills throughout the meal). Our meal was delicious and offered a few surprises but it felt heavy and we ended the meal feeling on the full side. I definitely need a nice walk back to our hotel after this meal.
I completely understand all of the accolades that Disfrutar has received. The level of service, quality of ingredients, and bold flavor combinations are all outstanding. Disfrutar is another must visit restaurant!
I have been a fan of Ferran and Albert Adria for a long time and was crushed when El Bulli closed. I was beyond thrilled when Albert Adria imagined and created a new and unique restaurant group. Our initial goal was to dine at Tickets. I sat online at 6 pm (our time) every day for a week trying for a reservation and ultimately failing. Luckily, we scored a reservation at Enigma restaurant. Over the next couple of months, I read reviews and they were either glowing or showed dislikes. My thought process for dining at Enigma was probably different from most people. I have dined at expensive restaurants and have been beyond disappointed. I love to cook and bake all the time and I'm pretty good at it. When it came to Enigma I was more interested in the skills and Avante Garde approach to food that is rare and special. To me, Enigma is a multi-sensory experience more so than just delicious food. After reserving your spot you receive a unique code and password to enter the restaurant.
On the day of our reservation, we entered our code and password. Walking down the hall we were greeted by the staff, our coats were taken, and we were offered water. To me walking into Enigma felt like stepping into a cave with cool colors, ice, and texture.
Our menu consisted of items we were familiar with, items we weren't familiar with and items I thought I would never try. The thoughtfulness, techniques, and flow of our meal were incredible. I also appreciated how the servers and chefs explained each dish and some of their process (some information was given after you ate the dish). There were a few dishes containing dairy and I ended up taking a few Lactaid pills throughout the evening.
I could not begin to pick out a favorite dish. The combination of textures, depth of flavors, and unique ingredients were truly special. A few standouts for me were the green mandarin Kakigori (bright and fragrant), Barnacle and codium (nice texture and slight sea taste), Pea "calcots" (fresh and true pea taste), the cured Lobster (I'm a New Englander and this was the best bite of lobster I've ever had), and the Autumn salad (who knew I would enjoy Sea Anemone).
With close to 40 creations one would think we'd end up being completely full. I was happily surprised that we were content and not uncomfortable. If you are looking for wonderful service, delicious food, unique ingredients, and a new approach to dining Enigma is a must visit restaurant!
After dinner we braved the frigid temperature and bitter wind for the 5 minute walk up to the Boston Opera House. We showed our tickets for Charlie and the Chocolate factory then made our way to the D entrance. Our seats offered us a great view of the whole stage and we were on an aisle with a few empty seats next to us! It was perfect! As we were looking around we noticed a lot of kids and started to worry that this show would be more geared to just kids.
Charlie and the chocolate factory is definitely a show for everyone! The scenes are adorable, the cast our incredibly talented, and the wit is definitely for adults but appropriate for kids. We highly recommend this show!
For dessert we enjoyed a passionfruit mochi. The dish wasn't overly sweet which was a nice surprise. My one criticism would be I wish there was more of the sesame brittle as the crunch was needed in the dish.
Our meal was perfectly portioned and while satisfying we also weren't overly full which was wonderful. I would suggest to the restaurant to update their website though. The website states the Omakase is 99 pp while we were charged 109 pp.
We both agree we can't wait to come back for a third visit and enjoy the Omakase with the luxury upgrade.
I'm so excited for our upcoming trip to Barcelona, Spain. Naturally I'm excited to see this vibrant and unique city but I'm also excited to go to two of the 50 best restaurants in the world. We'll be dining at Tickets as well as Disfrutar!
Our list of fine dining restaurants we've tried are: Morimoto NYC, Morimoto Asia, Zuma, Victoria & Alberts (Queens room), Nobu, Jungsik, Mozaic Bali, L'espalier, O Ya, Bar Boulud London, Four Season Sayan (Bali), Maze London, Cafe Martinique (Bahamas), and Tasting Counter. Below are a few pictures from our past experiences.
Here's my ever growing list of restaurants that I can't wait to try (not in any particular order)!
Atomix New York City, NY
Alinea Chicago, IL
Uschu New York City
Sushi Amane New York City, NY
Masa New York City, NY
Eleven Madison Park New York City, NY
Naoe Miami, FL
Noma Copenhagen, Denmark
Osteria Francescana Modena, Italy
Pujol Mexico City, Mexico
Den Tokyo, Japan
Narisawa Tokyo , Japan
Le Bernadin New York City, NY