Marea New York, NY: Located at South Central Park, Marea NY is a high-end, Italian coastal eatery that is the vision of Chef Michael White and restaurateur Chris Cannon, who have given innovative interpretations to traditional Italian seafood and fresh regional ingredients. The restaurant claims to source its authentic seafood all the way from the Mediterranean waters, which duly reflects in the way the epicurean menu turns out. Marea NY simply cannot be called "just another Italian restaurant in New York".
A one Michelin star eatery, Marea NY serves Italian and seafood items in a very casual but very elegant set up replete with white table cloths, dark hardwood floors, white walls and red lampshades. There was a nice jazz tune playing in the background and the clientele comprised mainly of businessmen and well dressed locals. Waiters and busman wore stripped aprons, white and gray shirts (depending on if they were waiters or busmen) and black pants, all very sharply dressed to add to the stylish atmosphere.
The tables at Marea NY were set with high end silverware and dishes, trendy water glasses and fine crystal and china. Very chic.
We went there for lunch and were served with a selection of three fresh, make that extremely fresh breads to start with; then came the squash soup - amazing.
For our main dishes I had fusilli durum wheat pasta with red wine braised octopus and bone marrow-simply outstanding. The bone marrow added the right amount of crunch to the fusilli, which may sound a bit strange, but it was exceptional! My dining partner had the spaghetti with crab, Santa Barbara sea urchin and basil.
Both the dishes were excellent. I of course loved my fusilli more than my dining partner loved his spaghetti and he of course felt just the opposite; needless to say, we decided to call a truce by simply agreeing with the fact that both were great.
The presentation was as impeccable and luxurious as the restaurant, with thorough attention to minute details. It definitely added to the experience of a pleasant lunch. The service was superb as well, with non-stop, invisible service. Their timing was perfect and we never felt rushed or intruded upon.
For dessert we had gala with apple and raspberry/cranberry sorbet-very good and bordino-ginger bread pudding and ice-cream-delicious. This time we both agreed that the Bordino was the better of the two.
Marea NY has a business lunch special, where diners can feast on an appetizer and a main for $34.00. I don’t know where else in New York one you could eat this well for that price. Great value for money. They also have a five course seafood tasting lunch menu for $75 (with a wine pairing for $125).
Lunch at Marea NY was more than impressive; the place had class, style, the food was excellent, the wine was good and the service was flawless.
A place this good, easily gets our bombastic rating. If you are headed to New York and want to try what could be the best Italian restaurant in New York, then book a table at Marea NY>, you will not be disappointed!
What I liked: The awesome food, stylish ambiance and efficient service
What I didn’t like: Nothing, everything was great!