Last night, I went to Aldea in NYC. I had an amazing experience here. Let’s begin. The staff and service is incredible, genuine, attentive, but, you know, not up your ass…which, I like. Aldea has an open kitchen. I’m obsessed with open kitchens; you get to see the masters at work, and, always rest assured, know that there’s no funny business going around behind the scenes.
If ever there are signature cocktails, I have to try one. This is The Royal 5th: Partida Blanco Tequila, Del Maguey Mezcal, Palo Cortado, honey, orange bitter=awesome. Smooth, potent and a smokey flavor. And, any drink with an ice cube the size of my face? Sold.
Next, for an appetizer, I ordered the Spanish Octopus with lemon-squid ink purée, potato, smoked-cinnamon paprika. It. Was. Un. Real. The flavors were incredible and the octopus was tender and practically melts in your mouth.
After that, for the main course, I ordered the Monkfish with coriander-citrus crust, potato, tomato confit, kombu broth. I’ve had Monkfish before, but never so buttery and delicate. The kombu broth had a great combination of salt and a hint of a spicy kick that lingers for just a moment and then dissipates. I would absolutely recommend this dish. My friend ordered the Duck Confit, which, I was told was totally delicious as well.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have enough room for dessert, although, after looking at the menu, I wish I did. I’ll be back to sample that menu, for sure, on another occasion. But, luckily, we were brought compliments, which included grape drops (I’m calling them that because I forgot what their actual name is), soft, gummy candy that, as weird as it sounds, tasted just like the little grape jelly containers you get in a diner (but better, duh), and almond financier, which was just adorable and delicious.
And, because I also have an odd obsession with light fixtures, I had to include the view above my seat.
Location: 31 W 17th St, NYC
Michelin Star: One
Long and Short: Will I go back? Yes.
Would I recommend it? Hell yes.