Last weekend got together with friends and had dinner at North End Grill in Battery Park Manhattan. Asumi is a sales representative (and awesome social marketer) for Dassai Sake with some great connections in the restaurant industry. She dropped a line to chef Floyd Cardoz and hooked us up with a seriously fun evening filled with food and drink.
The restaurant was opened earlier this year and is a great addition to downtown’s ever expanding nightlife and weekend scene. The space is wrapped in a very modern dark wood paneling. There is ample space between tables – which is nearly impossible to find in NYC. And the vibe is very upscale casual.
We opted for the tasting menu so as to get an idea of all North End Grill has to offer. They were very kind and allowed us to substitute the beef dish for a fish dish – many thanks from the crew’s pescaterian (that would be me). Everyone agreed the charcoal grilled shrimp served on top of watermelon and topped with micro cilantro was the star of the show. The rub used on the shrimp had a nice punch of heat and flavor. We had a fun moment trying to guess what herb/green it was. It also showed up on our second favorite dish, hardwood grilled scallops. Asumi gets high marks for being able to guess it and we had it confirmed by the sous chefs in the kitchen.
Speaking of the kitchen, we got our own private tour. Learned that they are the first kitchen in the US to have a Josper oven from Spain. It’s a really incredible charcoal barbeque that uses technology to control the intake of air and output of smoke. They also use a hardwood barbeque that is equally as amazing. The fire is built in the center and the coals can be adjusted to accommodate two grill surfaces on either side and further controlled by adjusting the height of the grill.
No evening is complete without a sweet treat. The tasting menu included a goat cheese macaron. The idea is great but the goat cheese was a bit too strong for my taste, however the macaron’s texture itself was nice and crunchy. Now, the gold medal goes to their strawberry sorbet parfait topped with toasted pine nuts. The beverage director sent it to the table to thank Asumi. It was so so so delicious.Credits: Tapes used for labels are from puglypixel.com; wood panel image is from Rakuga-cute, a purikura app on my iPad.