American: davidburke townhouse

Eating Out

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.

davidburke townhouse
133 East 61st St. (@ Park Ave.)

Solid choice for a fancy-ish brunch.

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  • Reply
    January 10, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    Cute! I agree. DB's food is decent and a good spot for the neighborhood but better options for a fancy prix-fixe elsewhere.

  • Reply
    January 10, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    You take amazing photos. That food looks absolutely amazing, one of my goals is to, one day, make it to the big apple. Love your blog.

  • Reply
    Mrs. Hot Cocoa
    January 10, 2011 at 5:00 pm

    Did you see the episode of "Top Chef All-Stars" when the chefs had to recreate/be inspired by the zany dishes served to them at Townhouse?

  • Reply
    January 10, 2011 at 7:36 pm

    What interesting dishes!
    What is that pink thing underneath the butter?

  • Reply
    January 10, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    @Mrs. Hot Cocoa – I have not, but I'll have to look it up!

    @Mo I'm not sure, but I'm guessing it's salt?

  • Reply
    D. Marie
    January 10, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    Wow looks tasty and interesting! I love the photos of each dish. It sounds pretty great, I was wondering why you gave it two instead of three apples? But then Ive have not eaten food like this since my wedding! Making pork chops tonight though! 🙂

  • Reply
    January 10, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    Ever since they aired David Burke Townhouse on Top Chef, I dream of it. So playful and delicious food!

  • Reply
    January 11, 2011 at 3:06 am

    @D. Marie I gave it two apples because while I enjoyed the meal enough, I would not go back again while there are other brunch places out there to try! 🙂 Three apples means I'd return, and four apples is OMG good. 🙂

  • Reply
    January 11, 2011 at 3:25 am

    I just love the presentation on all the dishes!

  • Reply
    January 11, 2011 at 4:48 am

    I'll admit, the seafood foam creeps me out, but that pretzel crusted crabcake seems interesting!

  • Reply
    heart the day
    January 11, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    Eating buddy here: I can vouch for the delish-ness of the crabcake! I didn't even need those shoestrings and eggs benni after that. mmm that was a good brunch.

  • Reply
    honey my heart photo a day
    January 13, 2011 at 6:46 am

    the meal looks so yummy! i love the butter presentation and the benedict 🙂 you eat such good food.

  • Reply
    January 13, 2011 at 11:48 pm

    food looks excellent. i love artsy butter creations too!

  • Reply
    January 14, 2011 at 11:04 pm

    Ummm omg give me the eggs benny please! Those shoestring potatoes look insane!!!

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