Quails at Market Cafe in Hell's Kitchen NYC, New York

Image of Market Cafe in NYC, New York
On a Saturday night, we were walking in Hells Kitchen and noticed Market Cafe, a modern look restaurant that has an interesting menu. The place was pretty bright with its white tiles and great photos, mainly related to food, on the wall. It definitely had a modern vibe, although the white tiles reminded me of a bathroom or a slaughterhouse.
Image of Market Cafe in NYC, New York
The location is clearly not ideal for a restaurant as there is not much people passing by, and at the same time, it is one of the rare restaurants in the middle of delis and takeouts. The place was empty for a Saturday night...Was it a sign?

After we ordered, they brought us some olive oil and bread.
Image of Bread and olive oil at Market Cafe in NYC, New York
I like dipping bread in olive oil instead of the traditional bread and butter. The bread was chewy, limit old.

They also brought some water with a slice of cucumber in it.
Image of Water with cucumber at Market Cafe in NYC, New York

That was a good idea: very refreshing!

We decided to share an appetizer and picked the handmade gnocchi.
Image of Gnocchi at Market Cafe in NYC, New York
It was served with smoke ham, peas, ricotta and parmesan cheese in a thick tomato sauce. The gnocchi itself was not that geat: very pasty. But the sauce was delicious and made up for it! Have the peas in the sauce added some crunchiness to it and the ham was a nice addition. 

Jodi ordered the Market Caesar.
Image of Caesar salad at Market Cafe in NYC, New York
It was composed of romaine, radicchio, and supposedly freshly grilled croutons. The croutons were soggy and the salad was a bit overdressed.

On my side, I went for the quails.
Image of Quail at Market Cafe in NYC, New York

It has been couple of years I did not eat some and was excited! I remember that I use to buy quails at Whole Foods or in Chinatown, in a small joint that sell them cooked so you just have to pop them in the microwave.
At Market Cafe, the quails were served with spinach and raisin, in a red wine reduction. When the plate came, I could immediately see that they were generous with the amount of quail: there were 6 legs, the thigh being deboned, helping in the eating process! The quail itself was good and tasty with a nice char taste. It was well cooked, meaning not overcooked as otherwise, it can be dry. The raisins and the spices in the sauce gave a Middle Eastern taste to the plate, but I would have served it with some couscous rather than spinach. The sauce was good, but there was too much on the place and I was wondering when I would get some on my pants! It was a bit soupy! 

Last was dessert! We went for the brown butter banana cake!
Image of Brown butter banana cake at Market Cafe in NYC, New York
For sure, they give you a big slice of a very dense cake! It has 3 layers with vanilla cream cheese frosting in between (not enough!). The cake was good, but a vanilla bean sauce or more frosting would have definitely made it a hit. 

The dinner at Market Cafe was just ok: the food was just acceptable and the service, although courteous was very slow. I will not go back and will more go to the heart of Hell's kitchen to have lunch or dinner.

Enjoy (the post)!

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