In the past-NYC's 'it' steak restaurants catered to power players - wearing power suits - surrounded by power dark wood panels- located (mostly) in power zipcodes. To start ... power drinks or bottles power label wines or power scotches, followed by power (humongous) portions for power appetites...
Yada yada yada.
Now-preferred steakhouse dining- is lower key- welcoming-in local spots. Lighter interiors comfortably seat whatever attired eaters - often with kids in tow-at earlier hours.
Food wise- a broader range of menu printed options including iconic crowd-pleasers - satiably satisfying tastebuds craving both the namesake familiar (well rendered)- to more global (fusion) selections.
Today's diverse diets+eating 'rituals' from functional healthy free of fare- to shareable portions for hungry nibblers and grazing snackers who skip the traditional 2-3 course meal...are a dining out given.
Able to deliciously please all of THAT-is the UES neighborhood destination, TBar Steak and Lounge...helmed by Chef Ben Zwicker- that gets the modern steakhouse part of its claim to fame just right -but much more.
Impressively so-from what we experienced on a packed house Tuesday night-with smiling diners celebrating the first warm weather night in months-as an emerging excuse to go out to a nearby fav eatery.
Warmly greeted by the busy TBar Steak and Lounge (TBSL) hostess for our 7:30 PM reservation...kudos to calm under pressure-we nabbed the only open table -near the front door-but it was totally fine.
Some patrons-like the smartly blue blazer -open collar shirt dressed men / summery frock-ed women- possibly post attending nearby art gallery openings - and casual attired post work- millennials... preferred standing around the front door/hostess station and the totally filled- separate lounge area
There are plenty of other restaurants in that stretch of Thirds Ave/70s...so hey-we figured, there must be food worth waiting for.
Quickly-we-a non-meat picky eater and a 6'5 hungry millennial who's either meeting up-eating out or preparing those home delivery meals...found drink selections from the by the glass-and bottle beer-list...that included selections from the major world wine growing regions - sparkling, reds+whites and specialty cocktails.
Asking to see the complete wine list-out of curiosity-we did take note of many good bottle and half bottle options like California reds- as well as a full bar- offering a plethora of sip worthy tequilas and distilled liquors (Paleo approved).
FYI-a drinks order mix-up -no problem-was quickly solved-as our waitress was able to multi-task and we never felt neglected, actually preferring the leisure paced meal where the conversation was not interrupted every five minutes. Hooray.
Another plus-a real deal bread basket gets delivered PDQ- with chewy sour dough and fresh crusty olive studded rolls-served with sweet-salty butter.
The "For The Table" shareable appetizers...and starters presented a focus dilemma: we wanted pretty much all of them.
But choose we did-including a mouth watering moist Yellowfin Tuna Tartar ($23)-flawlessly flavored with a blend of soy-ginger-sesame ...a big round serving underneath the contrasting crunchy texture of deep fried wonton dough slivers - with a leafy, similarly dressed curly salad extra.
Perhaps the few solo diners at the bar ordered this as the main meal...we would. (RECIPE BELOW).
|iPhone pics Yellowfin Tuna Tartar|
|Tiger Shrimp Cocktail|
Also served up-the crowd pleasing fresh large Tiger Shrimp Cocktail ($22)-four -with dipping sauces +lemon on a bed of ice...
Another popular choice ordered that night - by those semi-secluded children populated tables...as well as adult duos sitting at the outside tables...was the thin crusted staple-a pre-sliced Pizza Margherita-with tomato
and cheese ($19).
AND-two protein filled salads are conveniently (smartly) listed as main course entries-(T-Bar Chopped Salad-with chicken, salmon, cold shrimp options $23-$31---Soba Noodle Chicken Salad with carrots, ginger, sesame seeds, in a miso vinaigrette $23)- a pleasing acknowledgement of how people really eat these days everywhere-including steakhouses...year round too.
Efforts though-were appreciated-when it came to the second act of our meal-a perfectly cooked (medium rare) Aged N.Y Strip Steak (14oz-$52)
|NY Strip Steak|
IMO-TBSL could probably add a main dish of three or four sides too...as the Spinach Mascarpone ($12) -shared-had exemplary balance of ingredients- "not too creamy" ---featuring fresh spinach -simply seasoned-the way it should be.
Amazingly-we avoided the temptation of hand cut French Fries ($12)...though other tables seemed to devour their crispy over-sized order-served in a proper wax paper lined stand cone basket holder.
The coda-desserts- are not too complicated-and thus easily shared--with sweet tooth standbys-chocolate or strawberry ice cream sundaes, or plate of cookies, as well as a deep dish version of sliced heaven-aka Banana Parfait Milles Feuilles -fresh banana slices layered in a deliciously thick oozy caramel coconut sauce and whipped cream ($20) and a large warm Apple Crisp-topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream layered in a round, clear glass trifle style dish ($20)
|Banana Parfait Milles Feuilles-you can eat by yourself---warning!|
T-Bar Steak and Lounge 1278 Third Avenue (btwn 73rd/74th streets), NYC
Open Monday-Friday 11:30 AM-2:30 PM
Monday-Saturday 5PM-10:30 PM
Saturday-Sunday 11:30 AM-3:00PM
Sunday 5:00-9:30 PM
for Lunch, Brunch, Dinner and Bites
By Chef Ben Zwicker, TBar Steak & Lounge, New York City, NY, USA
Makes 4 appetizer portions or 12 tasting size portions - or a split (?) as main course-yes that good.
1 Pound Tuna, sushi quality
2 Tablespoons Shallots, minced
2 Tablespoons Chives, chopped
2 Teaspoons Ginger, minced
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
3 Teaspoons Soy Sauce
2 Teaspoons Sesame Oil
0.5 Teaspoon Shichimi pepper, (Japanese spice mixture)
1 Pinch Cumin
Salt and Cayenne, to taste
Method: Gently mix ingredients together, as if dressing a salad. Top with slivers of deep fried wonton or spring roll wrappers.