11/23/2014 Third Update
Now 3 years in, The Dutch has established itself as a consistent best in class restaurant. Andrew Carmellini continues to add restaurants to his growing empire. Since the original writing of this post, Locanda Verde and Lafayette both opened. Each one is fantastic in its own way and we’ve been to both on several occasions. Unfortunately, for almost two years I have neglected to post anything! Instagram only, which is a damn shame. We are now looking forward to trying Little Park, which opened near us in Tribeca only weeks ago.
It has been quite some time since we had brunch at The Dutch. My most memorable lunch was the soft shell crab sandwich I will never forget. On this occasion, Dad was in town for a visit and we did a rather gauche 2-day food fest. It all started at the Dutch. My dad said his dish was the best brunch he’s ever had. And based on the reaction we’re getting to the pics (including a ‘nice shot’ from Andrew C himself), I believe it. I went with a simple omelette and Steve had the Kimchi Fried Rice & Eggs which I really want myself. But the poached eggs really were the winner. Also don’t miss the Fried Chicken although not advisable in the morning hours as it is a huge portion.
OMELETTE, OYSTER MUSHROOM, COMTE CHEESE, FRISÉE…………………………18
SHRIMP & KIMCHI FRIED RICE, TWO EGGS, GRILLED PORK BELLY…………………19
And it seems there’s almost always a bloody involved here. There are now two options…the original and a Caesar
6/29/2013 Second Visit
Almost two years after my first visit I decided this review needs to be either confirmed or denied. While the first visit did not impress, the second most certainly did. I duly noticed the oyster sliders had gone from the menu. I went for soft shell crab as I read The Dutch was doing a great sandwich. I got in some of my own pics too, which for some reason back in 2011 I neglected to do!
The restaurant is still a hot spot and there wasn’t and empty seat in the house at 2pm in the afternoon on a summer Friday. The raw bar had some space, but otherwise the place was bustling. We had a lovely window seat. The noise level was a bit high, but I’d classify it as an energetic vibe.
We started with Bloody Marys, which were even better than the last time. Packed with spicy veggies and still rimmed with spicy salt, this is among my ‘best of’ Bloodies. The drink was garnished with pepper stuffed olives, a spicy green bean and a gherkin. ‘Delish’ and the perfect complement to an assortment of oysters. We ordered two of each type on the menu – Blue Point, Ninigret, Shigoku, Wasenauk and Wellfleets. Two of the ten weren’t shucked properly, which is always annoying at a high end restaurant specializing in raw bar! We’d just had a better assortment at Aquagrill.
I ordered the Soft Shell Crab Sandwich which was crisply deep fried and served with Green Goddess dressing and sliced chilis for a pop of heat. It looked like way too much bread when it arrived, but the roll was actually perfect for absorbing the juicy crab. There was a rather lovely watercress and cucumber salad served on the side which I enjoyed quite a bit as well.
Steve ate light, which I should have done but did not regret chowing down that crab! He had the local beet and avocado salad with Cloumage and Sicilian pistachios. What is Cloumage, you ask? Other than amazing?
‘Cloumage® is a fresh lactic curd made from our cows’ milk at Shy Brothers Farm. When cooked, Cloumage® has the texture of a baked ricotta. The lactic tang of the curd marries well with both sweet and savory flavors.’
So I’d go back for sure, perhaps regularly! I must say while we got a great seat I enjoyed the vibe in the bar more than the dining room. I am sticking with the idea that munching at the bar is the best way to go. They’ve got a rather nice selection of small plates great for sharing. And in the summer who doesn’t love a pile of fresh seafood? But timing is everything here as there is always a crowd.
9/13/2011 First Visit
I am probably going to get some flack for this one, but I FINALLY went to The Dutch and it was underwhelming. The crowds have been pretty absurd, so it’s been on the wait list. On a Sunday evening, my friend Paula and I decided to go to ‘The Oyster Room’ for early cocktails and a light dinner.
The Dutch is an Andrew Carmellini restaurant featuring the latest version of comfort food plus a raw bar and cocktail bar. Naturally everything is locally sourced. The menu offers something for everyone. And they are open late night as well. What more could you ask for?
The cocktails were delicious…it started out quite well! The bloody was served with a pickled ramp, which was a nice touch.
Bloody Mary – Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Chipotle, Smoked Paprika Salt, Pickle
The second cocktail was the Miss Elliette, which was made with Tito’s Vodka, Cocchi Americano, Lavender & Lemon. Cocchi Americano is an Italian Aperitif wine made in Asti. Overall, this was a lovely light and lemony cocktail with the scent of lavender
We ordered a variety of items to taste. We began, of course, with the oysters. They were fresh, shucked perfectly, and we ordered 2 Malpeques, 2 Moonshoal, & 2 Shigoku. Neither of us had a Moonshoal before, but both love any East Cost Oyster, these included. I am a fan of Salty, briny and fresh. The Shigoku were really nice. I am generally not a West Coast oyster lover, although I like any oyster. These were creamy, but not too creamy and the shells were small and very deep. Great oysters. Still looking good, right?
Next up, Peel & Eat Shrimp w/Red Remoulade. We got a bowl of 6 Prawns boiled in a spice mix. The flavor of the spice was nice, but the prawns were very underdone. A couple were nearly raw and we really had trouble getting the shells of as a result. Strike one. And the spice was messy, so you need to be in the mood for getting a bit dirty.
For our third round, we had the Dressed Crab, Bloody Mary, Green Goddess. We saw a couple of girls with this dish and it looked quite nice. A large pile of lump crab surrounded by Bloody Mary. It was good, but nothing stellar.
Last up, we did the Little Oyster Sandwiches. These are essentially Fried Oyster Sliders. Again, we saw them going out to quite a few people and they looked great. The oysters were on the large side which is totally fine for an oyster slider. Unfortunately, their bellies were really full of black silt. It was rather vile tasting and overwhelmed the flavor of the entire thing. I am a pretty big sport when it comes to this kind of thing. I got it down without issue, but it was bad enough that Paula had to set hers aside. At $6 for one oyster that was a bit of a bummer. We kind of expected perfect.
So, as with any Celeb Chef, highly acclaimed hot spot I will give it another chance. Next time, full ‘Supper’ menu as they call it with a reservation in the dining room. I will keep you updated. As of now, my only recommendation is DRINK and have OYSTERS. This is never a bad thing.
131 Sullivan Street – Soho