As I said yesterday, I would only mention the restaurant we dined at last evening if it was really good.   The restaurant has only been open eight months and from day one, it has apparently been a big hit with the neighborhood residents and beyond because it always looks crowded when we’ve passed by.  It was a great choice and so I invite you to visit their website – interesting name for a restaurant (Aged) Yes, as in aged beef, but there is more to the menu than just beef. While at the bar, we enjoyed martini’s made by an excellent bartender and as is our custom when sitting at the bar, we engaged in conversation with not only the bartender, but one of the sous chefs who had brought out the “special” appetizer for the evening – grilled steak slices placed over  a mound of potato gratin.   It was interesting to listen to the comments of the servers who were tasting the appetizer so as to be well informed when recommending it to their customers.  We continued our conversation with the Sous Chef discussing food and cooking in general and I invited him to visit my website for home cooks.  He was delightful and I loved his enthusiasm for food and cooking which are the attributes I admire in a fellow foodie, especially if that foodie is preparing my food!  He returned to work in the kitchen and in a short time returned to us with a plate in hand.  It was a mound of steak tartar with a poached quail egg on top and several slices of grilled bread.  I’m not a fan of raw beef, but I did taste it and the explosion of flavor in the first bite immediately made me a convert – at least to this version of raw beef.

For our appetizer we ordered the days’ special mentioned above and I ordered the fried calamari – I was just curious to see how they compared to the fried calamari we love at Union Square Cafe in NYC.  (Aged) wins.   Crispy, with a hint of heat, and a tomato sauce made with San Marzano tomatoes.   Petite Filet Mignon was our main course choice and diners have a choice of a sauce on the side (it comes in a steel gravy boat container) so I chose Chimichurri sauce – the Argentine favorite condiment to beef and almost anything else.  My husband chose a steak sauce which I believe was house-made as it is named “Aged”.  We shared a side dish of garlic mashed potatoes perfectly done.   A Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon by Lapostolle and frankly, that’s all I can remember.  Blame my amnesia  on the excellent martini(s).

Recovering from two martini’s and half a bottle of wine seems to require a longer recovery time as years go by.   Today is one of those days where it will take all day and into the night to fully recover.  To aid in the recovery, tonight’s dinner will be split green pea soup, with Yukon Gold potato pancakes as a side dish and an organic applesauce.  This particular combination of split green pea soup and potato pancakes is one that my mother used to prepare and I have prepared and enjoyed this combination to this day.  I would normally cook apples myself to make applesauce when needed (something my mother did not make – we ate Motts apple sauce from a jar)  but one time I was in a rush to have applesauce so I bought an organic applesauce and it proved to be worthy of my purchase.   Santa Cruz is the brand, made in Canada.   In apple season in the Fall, I will use only locally grown apples from NY/NJ/CT that are sold at the Union Square Green Market where I shop (excessively of course) whether the apples are organic or not, for eating out of hand or baking pies or making applesauce.  Ever had a “just picked” apple?  You will remember the taste forever.

Just in case you were wondering, no, I was not even tempted to enter the food stores on our way to the restaurant as I had feared.  Maybe I’ve “slayed my first dragon” and I am getting a grip on my food buying.  But maybe not as the real test will be when I’m in Manhattan and can find my favorite food stores even if I were wearing a blindfold.  Manhattan has many dragons…