Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Lure Fishbar

On part three of my culinary adventures through the northeast, I ventured down to the SoHo neighborhood in New York City; a popular area in Lower Manhattan known for its large number of art galleries and trendy boutiques. One of the most unique shopping areas of the world, it is also well known as a hub for outlet stores of national chains. Following in the tradition of other neighborhoods in NYC, the name SoHo refers to the area located "SOuth of HOuston Street."  A favorite among artists, you will always find some interesting to do here.

Although the shopping is fabulous in SoHo, that's not the reason I decided to pay a visit (not entirely anyway). They have a number of excellent restaurants as well, and one in particular I never miss when visiting The Big Apple. It is Lure Fishbar, located at 142 Mercer Street. A basement culinary wonder, Lure's glamorous interior makes you feel like you've entered a gigantic, upscale yacht to embark on a seafood adventure like no other. With paneled teak wood and white leather banquettes, the dining and bar area transport you to the high seas; while pedestrians can be seen through the port hole windows, walking above on the sidewalk.

Deviled Eggs topped with American Caviar

Every time we visit Lure, I look forward to the surprises the chef has in store. Aside from the crunchy complimentary chips they serve as you sit down, they usually offer a couple of other small dishes, compliments of the chef. They have been a delight every time. This particular evening, our waitress brought us two treats as we looked through the menu. The first one was a plate of Deviled Eggs topped with American Caviar. Very nice. The second bite consisted of Grilled Shrimp with a sesame soy sauce that was utterly delicious. Off to a great start!

Grilled Shrimp

Lure House Roll
Seared Branzino
Since Lure offers pretty impressive Sushi and Raw Bar menu options, we decided to start off with their Lure House Roll: shrimp tempura topped with spicy tuna and a Japanese tartar sauce that gave it a kick. The combination of flavors of the fish and the sauces brought a party to the palate that was irresistible. We followed the roll with our first entree: the Seared Branzino. The buttery fish offered a subtle, enticing flavor and came topped with beet risotto, salsa verde, fava beans, and truffle vinaigrette. The beet risotto added color and depth of flavor to the dish, with its moist, sweet taste.

Grilled Whole Daurade
The next entree we ordered was the Grilled Whole Daurade, with heirloom tomato panzanella, baby arugula, and champagne-shallot vinaigrette. It was divine. The Dourade is a mouthwatering fish originally from the Mediterranean and known for being a small fish with big taste.  This one was succulent and rich, and although served whole, had no bones to deal with. The champagne-shallot vinaigrette added an extra sparkle to the dish that complemented it well.

"Lure Style" Burger

Before I tell you about the desserts, I have to add that although Lure is a seafood restaurant, they also offer other options for those who do not eat fish. There is a Meats and Butcher's Block section that provides alternatives. For example, if you have children or a teenager with you (yeah I know) they will be immediately drawn to the "Lure Style" Burger.  Served with either french fries or onion rings, it's a hefty burger that satisfies the most discriminating burger lover. When asked how good it was, the response was "It's right up there with the Quarter Pounder with Cheese". This coming from a huge fan of the McD's favorite. Enough said.

Warm Chocolate Cake
Strawberry Shortcake IceCream Cake
To end the magical meal, we chose two desserts: the Warm Chocolate Cake that came served with salted caramel ice- cream, caramel popcorn & chocolate pudding and the Strawberry Shortcake Ice-Cream Cake, made up of strawberry sorbet, vanilla ice-cream, mint syrup & strawberries. I have to pause for a moment as memories of the warm chills I got when I placed the spoon of warm chocolate cake into my mouth flood my mind. It was excellent! Since I hadn't ordered dessert on my previous visits, I wasn't sure what to expect. (Yes, I know that's strange), but I was awe-struck. The sweet and salty flavor of the salted caramel ice-cream went perfectly with the chocolate cake; and the smooth, velvety pudding just finished the masterpiece. As for the Strawberry Shortcake Ice-Cream Cake, it was all-right. I'm not a fan of strawberry shortcake and while it was refreshing, it didn't set off any fireworks for anyone at the table. That was totally fine though because we had already been blown away with the rest of the meal.

If you're planning a visit to New York, you don't want to miss dining at Lure. With its great ambiance and delicious cuisine, it will quickly become a tradition for you too. For more information on Lure, you can call them at 212-431-7676 or visit them online at www.lurefishbar.com.

Lure Fishbar on Urbanspoon

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