Saturday, June 18, 2016

New Taste of the Upper West Side: Best of the West 2016

Seared Octopus Caponata with green olive tapenade, 
fennel salad, old balsamic

Earlier this month on June 3rd and 4th, I attended the annual New Taste of the Upper West Side under the grand tent on Columbus Avenue between 76th and 77th Streets. Best of the West, which  is my favorite of the culinary two-night tasting, was hosted by Sara Gore of NBC's New York Live and Open House. 

New Taste of the Upper West Side celebrated the crème de la crème of UWS cuisine for its 9th year, featuring over 46 fabulous Upper West Side restaurants preparing unique and delectable dishes.

It was a downpour of rain that night, but it didn't stop foodies from enjoying some seriously good eats. I was pleasantly surprised by the number of dishes that centered around octopus or salmon, which I both loved. Tessa, Bustan, Nice Matin, and Caffè Storico featured octopus and Atlantic, The Milling Room and Crave Fishbar made salmon creations. Desserts included Voila Chocolat, Jacques Torres, Alice's Tea Cup, Treat House and Mille-Feuille Bakery Cafe.

Check out highlights of my favorite dishes. Best of the West gets better every year, with my go-to UWS restaurants mixed in with some new ones I got to sample. Taste of the Upper West Side still remains to be my favorite celebration of gourmet cuisine. 

Atlantic Grill
Faroe Island Salmon Crudo 
with pastrami spice, pickled mustard seeds, pumpernickel crisp

Candle Cafe West
Grilled Vegetable Salad 
with crispy kale, poblano vinaigrette & avocado mousse

Cafe Luxembourg
Escargots Braised in Parsley Cream with Garlic & Smoked Bread Crumbs

Burke & Wills
Kangaroo Ham with Homemade Sesame Bread, Lemon Yogurt & Pickled Onions

The Smith
Toasted Ricotta Gnocchi with Truffle Cream

The Milling Room
Citrus Cured Salmon with marinated cucumbers & chives

Naked Cold Pressed Juice in 5 flavors:
Cool Pineapple, Bold Beet, Lively Carrot, Hearty Greens and Bright Greens

Bar Boulud
Veal & Foie Gras Pâté en croûte morels & spring pea salad

Taboon Charred Spanish Octopus
with white bean masabaha, spiced tomatoes, herb labane, 
shaved fennel & sumac pickled onion salad & cilantro oil

Nice Matin
Grilled Octopus with sweet pea, cucumber & red onion salad

Caffè Storico
Insalata di Polpo with braised octopus, potato, celery and olive

Main Lobster Summer Roll with sriracha emulsion & dill

Ed's Chowder House
Fluke Poke with sriracha, crispy garlic, red onions & scallions

Crave Fishbar
Faroe Island Salmon Crudo with sun gold tomatoes, fava beans, kaffir lime & yuzu

Henry's Summer Picnic
Fried Chicken "Chicharrones", Henry's Shredded Kale Salad,
Guavade Summer Cooler lemonade, guava juice

Roscato Prosecco, Sparkling Moscato and Sparkling Sweet Red

Voila Chocolat

Alice's Tea Cup
Buttermilk Mixed Berry Scones and Oreo Cupcakes

Magnolia Bakery

Jacques Torres

Jacques Torres Chocolate
Rum Raisin Ice Cream with Caramelized Popcorn

Treat House
Mini Crispie Treats

Mille-Feuille Bakery Cafe
Caramel Cognac Flavor Macarons

Cake Truffles

Bottega White Gold Moscato

- Kim Weling

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