Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Fish and salad extravaganza at Blue Fin

The other day, my mom was in town for work. She was staying at a hotel on the outskirts of Times Square, and due to the monsoonal downpours, neither of us was really keen on walking too far for dinner. So we met in the middle at Blue Fin, a BR Guest fish restaurant I'd been to a couple of times for work at my former job. Mom's a seafood lover, so I figured it would be right up her alley.

I was right. We were led up the stairs through a warren of dining rooms (the place is deceptively huge) to a spacious four-person table in the back. As we contemplated the drinks (a glass of prosecco for me, thanks!) and the menus, some bread arrived. We both chose a multigrain roll, and while it wasn't the best I've ever had, it was suitably chewy and tasty with the bubbly. Extra points for having whipped butter, although extra demerits for not having it room temperature. Blue Fin, you come out even on this course.

Lots of bread for two people

For an appetizer, Mom went with the Caesar salad, dressing on the side. She shoveled away at the ample portion of greens, draped gracefully with a blanket of shaved parmesan. Despite not finishing it (a good move, based on the amount of food coming her way), she definitely approved.

Some creative croutons in there

The entrees emerged next. Mom had gone with the sesame-crusted big eye tuna, with shiitake mushrooms, jasmine rice, carrots, snow peas, and ginger soy vinaigrette. Perhaps needless to say, my mom was in seventh heaven. She oohed and aahed over the veggies, particularly the mushrooms, as she took bites of the ruby-colored fish. Though Blue Fin isn't cheap, this portion was once again impressively large.


My choice was the warm goat cheese salad. Two discs of lightly fried goat cheese nestled against a pile of baby arugula hiding a bed of baby beets. The beets were cut in bite-size pieces and were perfectly sweet and tender. While I prefer my cheese un-fried, this fried crust wasn't overwhelming and separated easily from the creamy interiors of the cheese dollops. The surprise macadamia nuts on the side of the plate provided some extra flavor and crunch. Overall, delightful.

Beets are hidden, but they're there

After all that food, was there room for dessert? Of course there was. Mom went straight for the chocolate souffle cake, sans berry swirl ice cream. This was a decadent molten chocolate cake paired with a pile of stewed berries and a smear of berry sauce. A pretty fabulous pick for a chocolate lover.


I went for the ice cream/sorbet sampler, selecting coconut sorbet and creme fraiche and malt crunch ice cream. The two ice creams were superlative-- the creme fraiche creamy and lightly tangy, the malt crunch tasting like a Whopper in ice cream form-- but the sorbet disappointed. Rather than being creamy and strongly flavored, this coconut sorbet was icy and weak, which was too bad, since coconut can make absolutely heavenly sorbet when done right. No matter-- the two ice cream scoops saved the day, and the dessert was a winner.

Extra crunchy topping

We left full and happy, if a little lighter in the pocketbook. Our server let us linger after the check was paid, and by the time we emerged, the rain had stopped. A good omen? Perhaps; in any event, certainly a fitting capstone to a four Offset Spatula meal.

Blue Fin
1567 Broadway (at 47th Street)

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