Written by Hulda Lawrence
With all the new restaurants cropping up in town it is good to report that Water's Edge in Long Island City, East River and 44th Drive, is open as it has been for many years (718) 482-0033. This is a well-established place with a magnificent view of the handsomest city in the world. Taxis take diners there and as soon a you are ushered to a table you can begin to view the beauty of New York City. The size makes you want to celebrate something big like a wedding.
The manager, Halim Benchattara from Montpelier in France, greeted us and assigned us to a table with a magnificent view of the glorious skyscrapers. Our waiter, Chavez, was from Mexico and helped us with our orders. From the appetizers we selected Vanilla Scented Sweet Corn Bisque done with Blue Crab. This was a splendid soup, the best I have had in many a year. We also enjoyed Crab Cake, but the soup was exceptional. Other appetizers include Baby Lettuce Bouquet of cucumber, grape tomato, sherry vinaigrette; Apple and Endive Salad done with bleu cheese mousse and candied walnuts; Classic Caesar Salad; Shrimp Cocktail; and Spicy Tuna Tartar.
The first course is a choice among Panko Crusted Oysters; Char-boiled Baby Octopus; Braised Short Rib Timbale; Roasted Baby Beet Tower; and Steamed Pei Mussels, $9 to $16. Then comes "Composed Plates" starting with Classic Burger; Crispy Calamari Salad; Slow Poached Murray's Chicken; Baby Artichoke Crusted Salmon; Panko Crusted Oysters; House Fettucine; and Seared Sea Scallops, $14 to $27. Then Prime Rib Eye Steak, 18 oz. at $42, and Dry Aged New york Strip, 12 oz. at $38. There are "sides" at $7 of zucchini, Brussels sprouts, whipped Yukon potatoes or crushed fried potatoes.
Here are the entrees, other than those already noted. Filet Mignon with root vegetable hash at $37; Farm Duck Breast with fried apple wild rice risotto, Bourbon glaze and pecans; Roasted Rack of Lamb with goat cheese and wilted arugula; Grilled Lobster; Red Snapper Puttanesca with broccoli rabe and roasted fingerling potatoes and a Stuffed Vegetable Trio of mushrooms, cannelloni, stuffed tomato and yellow squash. There are sides at $7 each with the entrees from $27 to $38.
My companion enjoyed Baby Artichoke Crusted Salmon done with spaghetti squash, baby turnips and saffron broth; this dish was $30. My choice was Pan Seared Diver Scallops with shaved fennel, mache, citrus, roasted fingerling potatoes, lemon-lime emulsion at $29.
Of course there was a full liquor and wine selection.
After we had had our main dishes we thoroughly appreciated Raspberry Mille Feuille with cream chantilly. We could have had Chocolate Molten Layer Cake, Banana Bread Pudding, Apple Crisp or Classic Creme Brulee. Desserts are $11.
Chef Rory O'Farrell did himself proud and the wonderful owner Harendra Singh has a great place.
Water's Edge is located in Long Island City at the East River Drive, is open Monday thru Friday noon to 1 p.m; Saturdays from 5:30 to 11 p.m. Complimentary ferry service is offered Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. The ferry makes three trips between Skyport Marina on East 23rd Street with a free return when your meal is over.
It's just a few days until the holidays and Kevin Gouchee has given us a nice presentVentanas. He has two other restaurants: Flor de Sol in Tribeca and Son Cubano in the Meatpacking District. Ventanas is Spanish for "windows" and it is located beneath the High Line at 100 10th Avenue at the corner of 16th Street (212-366-1640). Here is where you can enjoy a tremendous group of Cuban foods and drinks in an exciting Moroccan inspired atmosphere.
The decor draws diners into contemplation of cocktails and there are a goodly number with names like Rose Blossom done with Herradura Blanco tequila, Grand Marnier, orange juice and rose syrup. The MGM is rum, with fresh muddled mint and limes, mango puree and a splash of fresh ginger and Pomegranate juice. Ginger Martini was my companion's choice and my drink was Death's Door Martini of vodka, dry vermouth, with large olives stuffed with blue cheese. On my next visit I'll try the Hemingway Daiquiri. Those we chose are $14 each.
The tapas del Dia for lunch listed many great dishes such as Jamon Iberico imported cured Spanish ham, a delight for $22. Empanadas Espinaca is another good dish of spinach and manchego cheese at $11, Guacamole with plantain chips, Ceviche de Camarones a fine shrimp dish. For $17 you can have your shrimp grilled.
In addition to the large variety of tapas, each with its appropriate sauce, there is Paellita, a traditional paella in a miniature size loaded with tender shrimp, baby clams, bay scallops and a variety of other seafood. It was delicious at $18. On the dinner menu is the Traditional Seafood Paella is $40.
There is a long list of wines from around the world with prices on the reasonable side and available both by the glass and bottle. My companion chose a glass of Nessa Albarino $14, a white. Dom Perignon is $350 a bottle.
For dessert we shared Migas Dulces, bread pudding carmelized with cinnamon, golden raisins and honey topped with cancha de leche ice cream. At $12 it a fine sweet.
Spanish music is a part of this relatively new restaurant presented five nights a week. Tuesday there is flamenco guitar by Hernan Romero, Wednesday there is Frank Tavares Latin fusion, and DJ sets Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Sanna's Electric Violin accompaniment on Thursday. Saturday's features a Belly Dancer.
Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 2a.m. Seven days a week
The dollar sign indicates the approximate cost of dining for two persons, excluding beverages, tax and gratuity.