I am sure some of you may wonder what I was doing dining in Times Square considering that lots of restaurants there only care about foot traffic and less about returning customers, catering to a crowd made of tourists and theater goers who do not know that Hell's Kitchen even exists. And after that sad experience few weeks ago at Da Marino, one would think that I would not try again. Well, I did as I had nice surprise in the past and was thinking that maybe this one would be added to my list of unknown gems in that area. The food was overall good and prices reasonable, but the service really needs some improvement:
- They brought focaccia but we had to ask for olive oil.
- They forgot to bring utensils when we got our pasta dish.
- They forgot to ask if we wanted cheese on the pasta and we had to ask.
- The dessert took more than 15 minutes to come and I had to ask twice, the second time simply asking for the check to get our order, already made, within seconds, after observing one of the waiters (not ours), dancing instead of taking care of customers.
But the food was good and it is too bad that the service spoiled the experience. It started well with a cocktail called Almost a Toddy, made with Rye Whiskey, amaro, apple cider, maple syrup, lemon and cinnamon. I loved the sweetness of it and the hint of cinnamon.
Then, we decided to try some antipasti, impressed by the station located at the entrance of the restaurant.
For $21, we chose 3: eggplant caponata, eggplant parmesan and cauliflower Milanese. The eggplant parmesan was fantastic and one of the best I had; so was the cauliflower Milanese that was a surprising dish that I never seen before and loved. It was not greasy and delightfully crispy.
After that, they brought us the fettuccine bolognese made with three meat ragu. I appreciated the fact that they split the pasta dish into two portions as we told them that we would share our entrées. This was delicious, the fettuccine being smothered by a comforting sauce with robust flavors.
The second entrée was the fresh black truffle pizza. It was a decent pizza, with lots of fresh truffle on it, making it decadent, but I admit that I thought the thin crust was just ok: it would have been a Neapolitan pizza, they would kill it! Yes, it was like buying some flatbread at the supermarket and putting some cheese on top. Fortunately, they had the fresh truffles on top...
Last was the dessert. Yes, the one arriving more than 15 minutes to our table after we ordered it! It was the tiramisu. Fortunately, it was a very good one: very creamy as I love them.
So, without the issue with the service, Bond 45 serves a quite good Italian menu. I would certainly go back for the antipasti, the pasta and why not, trying their chocolate mousse. Hopefully, I will not have to wait forever that time...
Enjoy (I did)!
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Bond 45 - 154 W 45th Street, New York, NY 10036