Why can't every week be Restaurant Week?! Oh, right. I don't have unlimited funds anyway. But today was lunch #4 in my eternal quest for $25 three-course meals. When I was perusing the website, the name The Writing Room struck me - I work with writers! I should go there!
And then when I saw the space used to be Elaine's, I knew I wanted to go. I never went to Elaine's, but I've been reading about it for years. I grabbed a gorgeous fellow from the office to join me and off we went, to the Upper East Side, for an extremely long (for a workday) lunch.
The Writing Room is a charming place, filled with lots of natural light and exposed brick. Beautiful light fixtures. Photos of writers. And books. Lots of books. They have a private room in the back that looks like an old-time library, with a fireplace and antique typewriters. It was lovely.
Our server was quite young and I think overwhelmed by the number of lunch reservations that came in. He was the only server, so although he was very pleasant, the service was delivered at a...leisurely pace. It took a long time for our beverages and bread service to arrive (though that bread was worth the wait - a warm Parker roll. Yummy.) It took over a half hour between our first and second course, which was a bit annoying. I don't want to be rushed, but I don't want to sit around waiting for my food all afternoon, either. It's a delicate balance. :)
For my first course, I got the house-made ricotta with mint, pecans, chilis, sea salt and honey. It was served with a crusty, toasty bread. This was DELICIOUS. All of the components together made a fantastic bite - the ricotta was smooth and creamy, the pecans were crunchy, the chili gave some heat and the mint cooled it down. I really thought this was a terrific starter and probably could've kept eating it all day.
For my main course, I got the chicken wrap, which had spinach, avocado, jack cheese and a chipotle aioli. It came served with a tomato jam on the side. I did not get the expected chips and pickle that the menu said I would. Darn. The wrap was very good, very fresh, with lots of chicken and spinach on it. I liked it very much, so much that I only ate half, so I could have the rest tomorrow and also to save room for dessert. I loved the tomato jam, too. It was bright and acidic, with just a little bite from some raw onion. It tasted great on the chicken.
Dessert was a rocky road ice cream sundae. It had vanilla ice cream, brownie pieces with peanuts and some whipped cream (or maybe marshmallow cream) on top. It was rich, delicious and a perfect size for dessert. I loved it. Those brownies were so dense and fudgy - YUM.
So, all in all, I liked The Writing Room's food and atmosphere very much. I would hope they would have more than one server handling the dining room from now one. Poor guy. But I had a grand time eating yummy food and chatting with a gorgeous fellow from the office. Not a bad day's work. Last Restaurant Week lunch for me is coming up Friday afternoon! I'm looking forward to the lunch but not to the end of Restaurant Week. Good thing there will be another one at the end of the summer...