By Joe Ray
NEW YORK CITY
Celebrating Eating The Motherland’s 100th (or so) post, we’re heading to New York!
Want dining as entertainment? All the show you need is on display at Buddakan. Outed by “Sex and The City” and now (Fortunately? Unfortunately?) full of mini Carrie Bradshaws, I’m not normally a big fan of this form of pomp and glam, yet here I ate it up; it’s impossible to stand at the top of the stairway and not look slack-jawed into the dining pit.
For its part, the food is up to the task, but the food is not why you come. Buddakan is an East Coast cousin to Betelnut – the San Francisco beautiful people restaurant where I once worked as a cook – it’s high end Asian fusion that’s very well thought out like long beans with shrimp and soy and a rather exquisite Peking duck salad served French style with frisée and a poached egg.
There are a few cracks showing. A pricey martini arrives with miraculous speed from the packed bar yet it’s barely cold. I’ll leave more than half of it on the table at the end of the night.
Later, our astute waiter asks about our appetizers.
Me: I really liked the duck.
Him: Yes, the duck salad is quite good.
We both intentionally left out the short ribs.
These are quibbles. We were here for the show and got it in spades – Carrie might have to elbow her way back in, but she won’t be disappointed. Dinner also turned out to be rather reasonably priced for a special treat kind of place – about $50 per person with drinks and a doggy bag full of lunch for the next day.