I did not realize that Marta was part of the Union Square Hospitality Group founded by Danny Meyer, but got a hunch when the waiter told us, after handing us the menu, that it was a non tipping restaurant, a concept that Chef Meyer introduced after noticing the disparities in compensation between the front and back of a house of a restaurant, the law prohibiting tips to be shared by the waiters with the cooks and dishwashers. I think it is a great idea and for sure, we had a very good experience there, noticing that the staff at Marta were really working together.
Located in the Redbury New York Hotel, Marta is a beautiful place: big, with lots of light thanks to the large windows, it is not your typical hotel restaurant. We were there for brunch and I admit that I did not know what to get, their menu being mouth watering. I started with a nice fresh squeezed orange juice.
Then, the first appetizer was the Ricotta, with wildflower honey, hazelnuts and sourdough bread. This ia very refreshing appetizer and if you have never tried this, ricotta and honey go extremely well together.
The second appetizer was the Polpo, or charred octopus served with potato, salsa verde and grilled gem lettuce. I simply loved it: the octopus was perfectly cooked, not rubbery with a nice char. The sales verde was delicious, but the most surprising was the grilled lettuce that was a perfect pairing with the octopus.
For the entrée, we opted for a white pizza with mushrooms called the Funghi pizza, composed of fontina and mozzarella cheese, hen of the woods, yellow chanterelles and thyme (there is normally red onion, but we asked without). The crust was very good, thin and crispy with a nice char. And not only there was a lot of cheese, but also lots of mushrooms. This is a great pizza that will satisfy anybody who loves mushrooms.
The brunch at Marta was delicious and it is definitely on my list for dinner, especially after seeing that they serve a crispy duck confit cooked in their wood fire oven...
Enjoy (I did)!
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Marta - 29 E 29th Street, New York, NY 10016