The Tasting Room Restaurant, NYC – Unique, Fresh, and Delicious Cuisine!

When I was employed at Sherry-Lehmann Wine & Spirits in New York in 1998/99, I was fortunate to meet and work with  a food and wine geek named Colin Alevras. He often talked about a plan to own and operate a restaurant in Manhattan, and he and his wife, Renée, subsequently opened The Tasting Room Wine Bar & Cafè (in the East Village at 72 E. First Street, at 1st Avenue) in November of 1999. Renée and Colin both graduated from Peter Kump’s NY Cooking School and apprenticed at Arpege in Paris. I had a great dinner at their first location several years ago, but with the opening of their new restaurant, The Wine Bar & Cafè now exclusively serves American wines, espresso, cheese, terrines, desserts, and homemade breads. The Tasting Room Restaurant (in NoLita, just south of Houston at 264 Elizabeth Street) opened in the Summer of 2006. My friend, Marsha, and I had an amazing dinner comprised of unimaginable combinations of unique ingredients and flavors. Colin uses fresh ingredients from local purveyors and changes the menu daily. We started with Tetsukabuto pumpkin salad with leeks and pork cracklings, and Porchetta di Testa with Newtown Pippin apples, sun-dried Korean chilies, and pistachios. We then enjoyed a day boat cod entree with whole wheat gnocchi and miso-braised radishes, and a second dish of 12-hour cured Muscovy duck breast with Japanese sweet potato and Hakurei turnips. We finished with a delicious selection of American farmhouse cheeses, and what Colin calls a “Six Point Rye Ale Ice Cream Sandwich,” that included a hazelnut cookie, popcorn and marshmallow. The thoughtful wine list, built by General Manager and Wine Director, Carolyn DeFir, is also a distinct treat. It is always a pleasure to see by-the-glass selections presented and poured from the bottle at the table. Try to have a glass of Once Pinot Noir as soon as possible, because supposedly, the frequency of this Oregon/California vintage will be holding true to its name. The Tasting Room Restaurant & The Tasting Room Wine Bar & Cafè are unique establishments with incredible food and wine, and warm, smart service.

~ by Thomas on February 5, 2008.

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