I recently had brunch with several lovely ladies (and one lucky gentleman!) at davidburke townhouse. The restaurant offers a 3-course, $39 brunch special. While not mondo cheap, the food is quite innovative and delicious. Located, as the name implies, in a transformed townhouse, the decor at decidedly unique, with glass balloons, a magnificent fireplace sculpture and rich, luxe fabrics. But let’s get real here – I was there for the food. So let’s jump right in, shall we?
The first thing I noticed was the interesting butter presentation:
So unique and…vertical – almost too interesting to eat! But then again, it was butter, so into my belly it went. Of course I couldn’t eat it straight off the plate (not in public company at least). Luckily, we were provided with warm, fluffy popovers – deeelish!
For my first course, I had the kobe beef carpaccio with blue cheese bites, confit beef tongues, pickled beets and black garlic:
The carpaccio was paper-thin and tasted delicate yet flavorful. The toppings just rounded out the dish, with hints of sweet, salty, sour and my all-time fave – umami! Mmmmmmumami.
One of my eating buddies ordered the pretzel crusted crabcake with tomato orange chutney and poppy seed honey:
While I can’t personally vouch for the yumminess of the dish, I *believe* it was demolished.
For my main entree, I ordered the grilled head on prawns with acorn squash risotto and pumpkin seed (first photo). I LOVE head on prawns – they make me nostalgic for the whole boiled shrimp my mom would make, where you just suck the briny goodies out of the head. You’re not grossed out, right? Seriously, it’s delish. I did the same with this dish, and I was presently surprised to discover that the risotto was topped with a prawn-flavored foam (BONUS!). I’m a huge fan of textures, so this was all good in my book. The risotto was super rich, creamy and scrumptious.
An eating buddy of mine sampled the “DBT” eggs benedict, with chorizo, shoestring potatoes and hollandaise. Do you think this dish came with enough shoestrings?
To finish off the meal, I ordered the hot strawberry shortcake sundae, a delectable delight composed of spiced pound cake, honey roasted almonds, and torrone ice cream:
The spicy pound cake and the almonds added a warmth to the sundae, while the torrone provided a sweet, chewy crunch (yes, chewy AND crunchy). Several of my eating buddies had slowed down by this point, but I soldiered on.
davidburke townhouse is a good brunch option for special occasions, visiting friends or just a leisurely weekend meal. The food is innovative without being *too* out there, thus appealing to a multitude of palates. While I still prefer Bouley as a brunch option, if you’re in the midtown/UES area, DB is a fine choice.
133 East 61st St. (@ Park Ave.)
Solid choice for a fancy-ish brunch.