Sunday, March 20, 2011
Restaurant Review: The Darby, NYC
I am going to start this post by telling you that I am not cheap. I don't turn my nose up at expensive shoes. I donate to charities whenever I can. I love giving gifts to my friends and family. I shop at Whole Foods.
As a longtime NYC resident, I am also used to the ridiculous prices at restaurants and bars in the city.
So, all of that said, when I signed up for a girls night out at The Darby, a new hot spot in Manhattan, I knew what I was getting myself into. I rarely go out anymore, so I figured "what the hell- how expensive could it be?"
You see where this story is going, right?
The $18 cocktails did not shock me. Nor did the $24 Tuna Tartar appetizer that was no bigger than a half-stick of butter. It wasn't even the fact that most of the entrees on the menu were in the $45 to $65 range.
What shocked me was a sentence printed on the bottom of the menu stating that a $25 surcharge PER PERSON would be added to the bill on Friday and Saturday nights for an "entertainment fee".
The "entertainment" provided was by a jazz band that played maybe 4 or 5 songs TOTAL during our dinner. They performed for ten or fifteen minutes at most, and we were there for almost two hours. I know this place is billed as a supper club, but I just found that to be totally ridiculous. If you are going to charge a fee like that, at least have the band play throughout the night!
OK now that I am done with my rant, let's discuss the food.
The executive chef at The Darby is Alex Guarnaschelli. I loooove her show on the Food Network and was very (very, very) excited to try her cooking. I was not disappointed!!! I sampled the Waldorf Salad (with endive, apples, and candied walnuts), the Tuna Tartar, the Grilled Octopus (with cucumber, dill, and red wine), Grilled Wild Salmon with Sunchokes, Roasted Brussels Sprouts, and Crispy Red Thumb Potatoes.
And they were all very tasty- no complaints on that end.
While the food was good, I feel that you could get food that was comparable at other NYC restaurants and I could certainly do without the attitude the hostess gave me when I arrived, or the outrageous prices.
I will not be returning to The Darby. At least not without an expense account......