We passed in front of Woodpecker by David Burke so many times that we decided to try it last Friday. For sure, the location is a bit forgettable, on 30th between Broadway and 5th, a bit off the beaten path and that might be why it was not that crowded when we went. Too bad because I found the food quite good and very interesting, not classic, with only few options for vegetarians though. This place has a nice atmosphere and although I found the service a bit spotty, surprisingly considering it was not that crowded, I would come back. Here is what we tried:
As a cocktail, I decided to try their signature one as it has whisky: it is the Woodpecker, their own version of a whisky sour, made with Breckinridge bourbon, amaretto, fresh cranberry juice, lemon and apricot. Nice, refreshing and well balanced.
Jodi opted for a mocktail, that was a honey mint iced tea. I am not always a big fan of iced tea but this one was delicious, not too sweet with nice hints of mint.
With the drinks, they brought us some homemade cheese sticks dipped in olive oil and we decided to share their bread and whipped ricotta. Both were quite good; in fact I should even say that their bread, that came hot, was fantastic: crispy on the outside, it did not even need the ricotta and I could have eaten more if we did not have some food coming.
For her entree, Jodi went for one of their specials: mixed mushrooms and truffle ravioli with a creamy pecorino and truffle sauce. As I mentioned before, they do not offer that many vegetarian dishes so it was nice to see that they would offer one as a special. And a delicious one indeed.
On my side, I ordered the hay smoked lamb chops served with a tomato merguez couscous. The lamb chops were good although they could have been cooked slightly more. I loved the Mediterranean flair of the dish, with the delicious couscous that had few pieces of merguez, a lamb sausage that you can find in classic couscous or tagine dishes, and was very flavorful, with hints of mint and lemon. Superb!
Last was dessert: it was the apple tart served with vanilla ice cream topped with an apple crisp. This was like a tarte tatin. It was ok: the apple was good, but the crust was soggy, missing crispiness and that butter taste that make this dessert delicious.
Overall, we had a great meal at Woodpecker by David Burke. The food was quite good and original. I would certainly go back there.
Enjoy (I dd)!
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Woodpecker by David Burke - 30 W 30th St, New York, NY 10001