Friday, July 24, 2009

New York Restaurant Week~ One If By Land, Two If By Sea

A few times a year there is a promotion in New York City called "Restaurant Week" in which participating restaurants will offer special Prix-Fixe menus, usually $24.07 per person for a three course lunch and $35 per person for a three course dinner, not including beverages, tip or tax. It is a unique opportunity to experience some of New York City's finest restaurants for a fraction of the usual price. You can see my post about the restaurant we visited last year at this link.

This year my husband and I decided to make reservations at a wonderfully romantic restaurant called "One If By Land, Two If By Sea," located at 17 Barrow Street, in the West Village neighborhood of New York City. The accepted lore is that it is located in an 18th-century carriage house originally owned by Aaron Burr, who served as Thomas Jefferson's vice president of the United States from 1801 to 1805, and is best known for killing Alexander Hamilton in a duel.

It is a romantic hideaway, and the only indication that the building is a restaurant is the menu board on the exterior wall.

Inside, the restaurant offers plenty of atmosphere with exposed brick, gorgeous woodwork, multiple fireplaces, a pianist, a large ornate bar, and beautiful large palladium windows that look out on a garden.

Please click to enlarge to see details

There are two rooms on the main floor and two upstairs. We sat in the Constitution room upstairs, which was very private and allowed for easy conversation. There were fresh roses on the table and long taper candles which were lit when we were seated. It was very comfortable and elegant.

Please click to enlarge to see details

I ordered a signature rosemary passion fruit martini. It was delightful! We were given a luxurious amount of time to look at the wine list and menu. I liked the fact that throughout the meal we weren't rushed or interrupted, and I could see why this restaurant has such a romantic reputation because of that, besides the atmosphere.

After ordering, we were offered an "amuse bouche" of an interesting combination of peach foam and seaweed flakes. A very sweet/salt taste which we enjoyed, although I imagine many might find the combination odd.

I had the wild mushroom tart as an appetizer and my husband had the tomato gazpacho, which was flavored with crab, avocado and lemon basil oil.

As an entree I had the pan seared red snapper, served with baby fennel and black eyed beans and red pepper essence, while my husband had the grilled bavette steak served with pearl onions, roasted radish and confit tomato. Both were excellent! We shared a Canadian red Merlot wine during our dinner.

For dessert I had the blueberry composition which was an unbelievably delicious combination of rosemary gel, yuzi curd, blueberry tapioca, blueberry sorbet and a rosemary chip. My husband had the mascarpone cheesecake served with black current foam, black current streusel and pineapple granite. We ended with a cappuccino.

It was a wonderful evening and a very memorable date night in one of our favorite neighborhoods of New York City!

The summer NYC Restaurant Week Prixe Fixe runs from July 12–31 (excludes Saturdays), please check the web site to see a list of participating restaurants and any restrictions.

I'll end this post with a little trivia. Does the name of the restaurant "One If By Land, Two If By Sea" sound familiar? It may be because you remember Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem called "Paul Revere's Ride" that is about the American Revolutionary hero by that name.

The second stanza of the poem reads as follows:

"He said to his friend, “If the British march
By land or sea from the town to-night,
Hang a lantern aloft in the belfry arch
Of the North Church tower as a signal light,--
One, if by land, and two, if by sea;
And I on the opposite shore will be,
Ready to ride and spread the alarm
Through every Middlesex village and farm,
For the country folk to be up and to arm.”


Anonymous said...

Mmm I like red snapper too. It's one of the fish you don't need to gut.

It looked like you had a wonderful time. The food was really well presented and very good value with the special offer.

Have a great weekend. said...

A nice place to have a date indeed. you are so smart to take advantage of this. great post.

Joyce said...

Charming history to go along with the charming name. Dessert sounds delicious:)

RoeH said...

You make me want to visit and live in New York so bad. It'll never happen though. This place looks neat. And it looks like it was a stable to me so I believe it. I'd like to have been there in Aaron Burr's time. Well..except for a few 'personal' things, that is.

Junie Moon said...

What a great opportunity. Your dinner sounds delightful and quite romantic. I do remember the famous poem of Revere's midnight ride, we had to memorize it in school when I was little. So funny that the historic location of the restaurant references a historic event in our country's history that actually happened in Massachusetts, but the restaurant's name is great. I like the way the name also can also relate food: land with meat and water with seafood--that's a fun play on words.

Judy said...

How fun to take advantage of a great promation to visit special eating places of NYC. I like the one you chose! Thanks for sharing your dining expereince with us...including all the historic information.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Ooh, thanks for taking me along. My husband always kids me and says I am much more concerned with the ambiance in a restaurant than I ever am with the food. It looks as though this one would score highly on both counts!

Funny, I've got a snippet of a Longfellow poem in my latest post as well!

Bill said...

Hi Pat,
Thank you for sharing your wonderful NY dining experience! I also devoured your "secret gardens" tour ... very special!

Thank you for stopping by and leaving the thoughtful comment. I'll be visiting your blog often.

Hope your weekend goes well!

Bill @ Affordable Accoutrements

Vee said...

Oh look at all the photos you were able to share with your wonderful mosaics. I notice a pianist...that's so nice...we never get live music in our local restaurants and I would so love that. It all sounds wonderfully romantic...the sharing of wine, the delicious meals, the exotic desserts. Hmmmm...

Just a little something from Judy said...

My brother and his family are visiting Manhatten this week. I told him I am learning some valuable facts about that area and surrounding areas from one of my blogging friends. I appreciate you sharing about this restaurant today. It is quaint and beautiful! Pan seared Red Snapper sounds so delicious to me. What a fun, romantic thing to do with your husband. So informative!!

Susie Q said...

Isn't restaurant week wonderful? We have one here two or three times a year. Next week is another one and we need to decide where we will try!
Your *date* had to be just oerfect in such a sweet place! Sounds as delicious as it was great to look at!


Jennyff said...

That sounds like a delicious meal and a gorgeous experience, all the better for being at a special price. UK restaurants sometimes offer special priced meals for online booking but a whole Restaurant Week with such great restaurants sounds fab. I've just had dinner but feel a bit peckish now.

CatHerder said...

That sounds WONDERFUL...i would LOVE to try that martini!!!!!

imjacobsmom said...

What a great way to feel out the restaurants in your area. Your menu sounded sinfully delicious. The surroundings very nice. This post would make a wonderful restaurant review for them. ~ Robyn

GMG said...

Hi Pat!
Sorry for the long absence! But don’t you think it was a great vacation; some very busy weeks and just a few days off... ;)

ONE IF BY LAND, TIBS is a lovely place. When I used to be alone in NYC, I usually went to have a burger at next door «Boxers», after the Village Vanguard, the Visiones or the Blue Note shows. Kitchen was open until 4:00 a.m. ;)) It seems it closed now :-(
But when I was accompanied, TIBS was a great choice!!! Hope you had a great time!

Meanwhile Blogtrotter is still turning around Iceland. Enjoy and have a fabulous weekend!

Nola said...

Sounds terrific! Yes, I remember reading of Paul Revere's ride as a child.

The Quintessential Magpie said...

I love snapper, Pat. What a great time you all had! Loved everything you posted.

I wish you could have been at lunch with us today (we had a well prepared trout dish and an interesting soup). I am still passed out from eating! LOL!

Have I told you today how much I love NYC? This post is just another reason!


Sheila :-)

Anonymous said...

I knew I had heard that but did not remember where it came from Thinks for the lesson. That restaurant sounds outta sight. So romantic.

Just A Girl said...

Hello Pat,
I really think you've missed your calling. You should become a food critic. Listening to your descriptions made me hungry...LOL!!
It sounds like the perfect date night!!

xoxo Cori

steviewren said...

I agree with you, the atmosphere in that restaurant is out the roof. If the meal tasted 1/2 as nice as the surroundings look, then it must have been superb. The carriage doors/window outside were beautiful as well. It must have been one very elegant carriage house back in the day.

Rue said...

Hi Pat :)

I loved the tour of the secret garden and this post about your night out. What a fantastic night you had! The food sounded wonderful :)


PS.. yep it was a Hampton Inn :)

Claudia said...

That was one of my favorite restaurants! I thought it closed. I adored it and would use it as my "splurge-celebration" restaurant. (I was very poor!) You are making me want to purchase an airline ticket!

Lora @ my blessed life said...

What a great promotion! And I love the name of that restaurant, too. It looks like a lovely place~and your meal sounded delish!!

Jillian's Bella Rosa Antiques said...

It is very enjoyable to read this and "get away" to the city even for just a moment. I was savoring every bite! Thanks for sharing. It looked like a FABULOUS night out.

GailO said...

What a fantastic date night! This place sounds like something you can only find in NYC:)...I think I would love the peach foam with sea weed chips...I love fruit and salt for some reason...and that blueberry dessert sounds like it is to die for!

We have had restaurant weeks here in RI but I somehow always miss them...that will change next time!

Ciao Chow Linda said...

That's one of my favorite NYC restaurants - so beautiful and the food is good too.

Lisa's RetroStyle said...

What a meal! Sound fabulous:)

It seems like just yesterday that it was last years restaurant week. Funny how time flies.

aliceinparis said...

That meal sounded terrific! Lovely to have a romantic night:)

Anonymous said...

Heard so much about this restaurant but never been there. Thanks for the wonderful descriptions and photos.