My wife and I tried Talulas for the first time tonight, after much anticipation. While the cheese, cocktails, and dessert were all superb (as well as the gorgeous outdoor space), we felt our appetizers and entrees left a lot to be desired. Especially given the price tag.
Lets start with the good. This place is gorgeous. On a mild summer evening, the garden seating on the edge of Washington Square cant be beat. The cheese is also notably awesome. We ordered the "World Traveler" and I had a hard time choosing favorites among the variety of stellar selections (all of which was made even better by the overview provided by our very knowledgeable server). Also awesome: the drinks. I had the "Treehugger", essentially a maple manhattan. I was afraid the maple was going to be too overpowering, but it was actually quite subtle and a nice complement to the booze. My wife had the "Painter" and the "Wanderer" and was wowed by them both. We both also loved our desserts: the "Best Bowl of Ice Cream Ever" and the ricotta doughnuts.
But all was not superb. While our appetizers (chicken liver parfait, watercress pesto) and entrees (crispy lamb shoulder confit, gnocchetti) were enjoyable, we felt as though all lacked proper seasoning. There was just something missing. I understand farm to table is all abut letting the fresh ingredients shine, but even the freshest of ingredients could benefit from a little zing in the seasoning department. If the bold, unique flavors of a restaurant like Zahav is what really gets you going, you may find Talulas appetizer and main offerings to be a bit too pedestrian.
To get the best from this place, try to steal a seat at the outside bar, order some drinks and cheese and enjoy the outdoor space. Don't bother dropping cash on anything else.
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