This column is a continuing series by Chef Peter X. Kelly of Xaviars Restaurant Group which runs every Thursday.
For more than two decades Daniel Boulud has been considered one of the greatest chefs working in America. His eponymous restaurant, Daniel, on 65th Street in Manhattan has been recognized around the world for its excellence. This past week I celebrated a very special occasion at Daniel and was incredibly impressed with the total dining experience.
As someone that not only oversees several restaurants but someone that visits many restaurants in the course of a year, I found Restaurant Daniel to be current yet classic, professional but not stiff, cosseting without hovering and truly a memorable dinner out.
Daniel is an expensive restaurant and a night out here might mean skipping several visits to a more casual and user friendly establishment. However this restaurant is the epitome of fine dining and haute cuisine and well worth the price of admission. It's the type of restaurant that young cooks and waiters clamor to work at, just to get a behind the scenes look at how one of the great restaurants of our time operates.
From the moment guests are welcomed, they are transported to an environment where every luxury has been considered and excellence is paramount. The small upholstered stool to set your wife’s hand bag, the frette linen that covers the spacious table, the beautiful floral arrangements on each table and in every corner set a tone. Each dish presented on a custom designed plate of fine china is a work of art.
The wine cellar holds a collection of some of the greatest wines being made in the world and its list is deep and presented by a team of sommeliers that are knowledgeable about all. The food is extraordinary and each dish shows not only the exacting standards of this great chef but the creative spirit of an artist dedicated to the culinary arts.
Restaurant Daniel exemplifies the heights that hospitality can reach and though we may not all be able to visit as often as we would like, for a special or celebratory dining experience Restaurant Daniel offers its guests a few hours of sheer luxury and culinary bliss that few others attain.
A very memorable experience I highly recommend.
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