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OK, let's talk seafood. Last week, Will and I had the pleasure of dining at the famed seafood institution Le Bernardin. In NYC in 1986, two siblings opened up this stunning Michelin three star awarded restaurant, focusing on high-end, sea-inspired cuisine. Since inception, Le Bernardin has received outstanding accolades, and based on our experience, it did not disappoint.
In a word, wow. When entering the establishment, there is definitely an air of stuffiness. Men in suits and women in pant suits and cocktail dresses fill the room. Diners tilt slightly forward, whispering to one another and marveling over the cuisine and presentation. Once you're settled at your table, the air lightens a bit. Our servers were formal, but quite pleasant and they had this essence of floating around the room as if they are on air.
The restaurant is decked out in warm woods and shimmering-like metal work, mirroring fish scales that decorate the walls. The dining room on the recent Monday evening was packed to the gills, so to speak, and our three hour-plus dinner was both a feast for our eyes and bellies.
We chose four courses, broken down by "almost raw," "barely touched," "lightly touched," main course, and dessert. Our dining parters were kind enough to share, so I had a wonderful time exploring several types of fish, including fluke slivers in an Asian style broth-like tea, the best salmon sashimi I have ever had, and Tasmanian trout. I also feasted on this incredibly rich homemade seafood truffled pasta and langoustines dusted with fennel.
For my entree, I chose the grilled white tuna with beef wagyu that melted in my mouth. I loved the combination of this play of surf and turf.
To finish, we were presented with a tray of delicate sweets and we shared several desserts including a tres leches cake that was bright and bold. Dessert was lovely, but the real show stopper is the fish.
Le Bernardin is quite an extravagant treat. The four-course prix fixe is $150 per person and that's the starting meal. They also offer a lunch prix fixe for $87 during the week, which I have heard raves about. If you have the opportunity to splurge and you fancy seafood, then I highly recommend placing Le Bernard on your restaurant list.