Saturday, December 1, 2012

New York - A sudden change in plans

At 5:20am I received the following email:  "We're a go.  See you at the airport."  In just over an hour, I was showered, packed and en route to the airport, simultaneously directing the cabbie and leaving messages to cancel my haircut and let Amy know that I wouldn't make it to ballet class.  By 9:30am I was in New York City, sitting in a conference room in one of the major New York law firms. 

Depending on how the next few days go, I'll write more about what I actually did in that conference room later.  For now, you can just click here for some context.

By the time we hit 6:30pm, everyone else in the room was too exhausted to think straight (they were going on 30 hours without sleep), so we adjourned for the day.  My colleagues and I checked into our hotel; we all agreed it was time for dinner and that I should be in charge.  Because that is always the right answer.

By this time it was late enough that most of the best places were already booked for the night.  But I managed to find a Japanese restaurant called Sugiyama that was listed in the Michelin Guide and scored highly in every other food review I found, and which happened to have room for three at 8:15pm.  Did I want to make a reservation?  Yes, please. 

The place is charming and tiny and reminded me very much of Soji down in the Village and Azabu in Paris.  As any civilized restaurant should do, Sugiyama cabined our menu selection to a few pre-fixe dinners.  The others didn't feel strongly, so I ordered the 8-course dinner for all three of us.  Three hours and ten courses later, we stumbled home happy and full and delighted with the delicacies we had enjoyed.

Sakizuke -- tofu appetizer

Zensai -- delicate arrangement of seasonal Japanese fish and vegetable
(I ate that ENTIRE CRAB in one bite. Possibly the bravest thing I've done.)

Takuri -- assorted sashimi
(one of the best overall selections of sashimi I've had)

Suimono -- seasonal clear soup

Ishiyaki -- tenderloin cooked on a hot stone
with mushrooms, a pepper, and garlic chips

Oshinogi -- oshisushi
(The tofu on the left was delicious;
as was the persimmon stuffed with jelly-fish, cucumbers and sesame cream)

I can't remember this one, and it's not on the online menu
Sticky rice with vegetables wrapped in a leaf
with miso soup and pickles

Grapefruit wine jelly with cream
(a definite highlight of the evening)

No comments: