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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

How To: Have a Perfect NYC Spring Weekend: Public


I have walked passed Public for years and never even thought of entering once. The this year, a friend invited me for a drink at the bar. He thought I would love the architecture and design. Of course he was correct. Good job David! The place is awesome. 

So, after our six drinks pit stop at Jo's we ended up at Public for dinner. Finally food. Well so we thought. We arrived at Public around 11:00pm.  However, we were not seated for dinner until 12:00am. When we were finally seated, we were all so famished we stuffed our faces were completely silent while we ate. 

We sat at the bar for an hour and chatted and drank some cocktails. I had time to really take in the architecture and decor of the restaurant. 

There were so many aspects I absolutely loved I can't think of anything I didn't. Just looking at the pictures you can see why. Everything about it screams me. Obviously I love the light fixtures, so very industrial with the metal and glass. I am also a big fan of the stained and sealed concrete floors, exposed brick, exposed beams, pipes and contemporary bar display. 

The ceilings were very high and even though the space was crowded I didn't feel cramped. I also love the aluminum frame and glass paneled door, which opens like a garage door to the outside patio. My parents just recently did this at their house. 

I also love the use of the subway tiles on the wall. Notice this has been a reoccurring theme within the past few restaurants I've been to. 

I LOVE the use of the library card catalog.  Great accent piece along with the burnt orange arm chairs flanking each side. 

The use of different chairs per sections is also a great idea. It adds a little more interest. Of course in some restaurants, especially very contemporary and clean ones, this might not work as well but because most of the pieces in Public are either antique or replicated pieces, it seems to work. 

You definitely don't have an excuse for dirty hands at this restaurant. They give away bars of soap in each bathroom. I like how they changed up the bathrooms to add just a little more interest and color. I think the green works great with the other colors of the restaurant. 

If you keep walking past the bathrooms from the bar you will end up in this little Lounge area which is dark and looks a little dangerous! I love the change of pace and the strong color with the dark chocolate leather. The pop of the red surround on the fireplace also is a great touch. The room really does seem like a place I could hang out in after a long day at the office. Very chill but has a little flavor. 

Along with the library card index, they also have old safe deposit boxes with a display of keys. I love the touch of the antique pieces. Overall the restaurant has a very eclectic vibe which seems to work well in this situation. 


We were seated at this great round table, which was loved by all close to the glass garage door right in the center of the room. We decided on some starters of Grilled scallops with sweet chili sauce, creme fraiche and green plantain crisps and Pan-seared foie gras on spiced french toast cranberry kumquat chutney, maple glaze and crispy bacon (below). 

The scallops were delicious. I loved the sweet chili sauce. I almost wanted more. There were only three in an order so I only got one and a half. Emma and Andrew split the Foie Gras so I didn't have a taste. 

(Fried Barron point Oysters with shiso, sansho pepper, and waszbi-yuzu dipping sauce)

(Cured wild boar, Garratxa cheese, marinated olives, caper berries and crostini)

(Marinated white anchovies, on quinoa croquettes with spicy saffron aioli) 

Emma's main course was the Snail and oxtail ravioli with pickled shitake mushrooms, oven dried tomatoes, pea shoots and smoked paprika oil. She was nice enough to give me a taste and to be honest it was pretty good. There was a hint of sweet which I guess from the oxtail. Her portion was pretty small. Maybe three ravioli in the dish which was good for me and Emma but not for the boys. 

The boys both got the Roast lamb sirloin on crispy goats cheese polenta with saffron braised baby vegetables and harissa aioli. Mike gave me a taste. It was pretty good. The portion was also small. Both mentioned they wished it was larger. 

I had the Salad of herby lentils, green beans, avocado, toasted pecans and baby gem with pomegranate molasses and avocado oil vinaigrette. My portion was quite filling and delicious. There seemed to be a hint of curry or some sort of Indian spice, which I loved. 


We passed on dessert. Although, the sticky toffee pudding with Armagnac ice cream and hot caramel sauce sounded divine. 


Check out some of the other restaurants and lounges that are owned by the same people. 

Public is located on Elizabeth Street between Prince and Spring on the East side of the street. 

We finished dinner around 1:30am and decided to keep going. We ended up at Arlene's Grocery listing to some live music where I ran into some friends, Dallin and Dan. Sadly, since it was so late we only caught one band and four songs. But, we enjoyed ourselves. We ended up at Marshall Stack for a nightcap and ended up closing the bar. What a night. 

I don't have too many nights like this but I wouldn't mind it every once in a while. I'm not gonna lie, I had a blast! Great friends, great atmospheres, great drinks, great food, great city. 


1 comment:

  1. Nothing but perfect weekends. How do you do it?