Minetta Tavern Leaves Much to be Desired
I got to catch up with one of my favorite Sternies, Katharine, over dinner two weeks ago. I heard rave reviews about the burger at Minetta Tavern, so I was excited when Katharine suggested going there.
I ordered a yummy cocktail to start: a margarita with a ground pistachio rim. It was a nice cocktail, the nutty flavor was a contrast to the typical salted rim found on this classic drink. For whatever reason, Minetta Tavern doesn't list its cocktails on its website. It has all of its other menus listed...I think it is a bit of an oversight to not list the drinks. I tend to select restaurants based on both the food and drink options - so this should be changed :)
As a starter, we got the Roasted Baby Beets. served with Leeks, French walnuts and Vermont chevre. It was a nice, light start to the meal.
For my main, I got the Black Label Burger, made from a selection of prime dry-aged beef cuts with caramelized onions and pommes frites. The other burger option was the Minetta Burger ($20) with cheddar and caramelized onions. I asked our server if I could get the Black Label Burger with cheese and was strongly warned against it because the cheese would hide the juiciness of the beef. Maybe I couldn't appreciate the distinctiveness of the beef cuts but I didn't think the burger was worth $28. When it comes down to it, I prefer the $5 burger from Five Guys. For me to pay over $20 for a burger, it really needs to change my life...or involve truffles!
I don't recall the second cocktail I got but it involved whiskey. It was delicious! I loved it even more than my first drink.
Katharine ordered the Tavern Steak with Pommes Frites. I forgot to snap a photo but she loved it! I would say that something I did not enjoy about the dining experience was how CRAMPED the restaurant was and how LOUD it was. I felt like I was yelling at Katharine the entire time and heard way too much of the conversations of the diner's conversations to our left/right. Also, Katharine didn't even have enough room (seated on the booth side) to get out of her seat without pulling the table out. We were packed like sardines. I understand it is a trendy restaurant, but I'd like to eat my meal with some breathing room and without YELLING (I'm not yelling now...I swear).