DMANBURGER “The National Bar and Dining Rooms”Posted: February 1, 2011 in Uncategorized
Geoffrey Zakarian, celebrity chef of hot-spots such as The 21 Club, “44” at the Royalton, The Blue Door at the Delano in Miami– and one of the few chefs ,at the late Patroon, (I swear I didn’t copy you Mr. Bruni) to score 3 stars from former New York Times restaurant critic and Mistress of Disguise Ruth Reichl. Zakarian now has ventured out with Executive chef Paul Corsentino, and once again, in the hotel bistro sphere with: The National Bar and Dining Rooms. His roots once described as “modern with roots in French” with a temporary semi-circle twist on some good ole down home grub. Like the Biscuits and Gravy with Duck Confit, Sunny Egg and scallion gravy-and ever so slightly retreats to the traditional Croque Madame. Designed by the presitigous Rockwell Group, The National welcomes you with a sweeping staircase, low tones of grey and white and rich leather curved banquette and diamond shaped black and white floor tiling. Sectioned off rooms, drop lighting and a spacious bar reminiscent of a 40’s style Parisienne bistro-complete with a bicyclette scribed with New York’s accomplished culinarians such as Gael Greene and David Burke. Zakarian is no stranger to the burger art of Manhattan, remember the hype of the Town Burger? Will he yet again, stun patrons including “moi” with his beef and bun artistry? We’ll see ! With the help from legendary and mad beef scientist Pat La Frieda, Zakarian features a sandwich simply called ” Burger” on the menu. The map of the burger is described as ” Homemade pickles,House Sauce and Bibb Lettuce ($15). Pork lovers can add a slab of the pink stuff for an extra ($2). Originally burgers were washed down with Coca Cola, Zakarian opts for a long sexy slender glass of Ice Tea, bobbing up and down are large cubes of Ice Tea flavored ice cubes, and a slice of lemon. The Burger comes on a crusty oversized brioche bun, smack in the center of the plate with bright leafy Bibb lettuce falling out of the side. The aroma of the pickles hit you straightaway, that crisp salty smell, juices glistening in pools around the bun was a good sign. The flavor of the burger was compounded with a light “house sauce” that resemble stewed tomatoes, more than a sauce but nevertheless extremely tasty. Pat La Frieda’s blend was juicy and supple in the center with a strong bite of short rib, brisket and chuck, pickled onions also made an appearance notching the level of flavor way above your average bistro burger. Zakarian comes up trumps with this burger, it is coupled with a silver basket of triple fried french fries and a bottle of the redstuff ( Heinz)you just can’t go wrong.