NYC Restaurants

Duvet
45 West 21st Street
New York, NY, 10010
(212) 989-2121
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Cuisine: New American , Seafood

Menu:   View the Menu

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Cititour Review:
Breakfast in bed has long been an acceptable option, but dinner in bed has been the refuge of the sick and the lazy. So what do you call someone who eats dinner in bed in public? A trendsetter!! What was once unthinkable has recently become the hottest restaurant gimmick in the world (thanks in part to the folks in overheated Miami). And now it's one you can sample when you visit to the newly-opened Duvet.

The former Centro-Fly nightclub has been completely refigured, with its enormous main area now housing both an enormous jellyfish tank -- thankfully, they're not on the menu --- and 23 very large, specially made beds that can "seat" up to eight people. The house thoughtfully provides spa slippers so you can slip your shoes off, as well as a round tray in the middle for drinks and bed trays to perch your meals on your lap.


Of course, if this all sounds too messy or too silly, you have other options. The first is an 18-seat Amuse Bar, where you can indulge in one of the house's specialty cocktails -- the pear margarita is really tasty -- and nosh on a selection of mini-appetizers including the visually remarkable and quite delicious crab salad encased in a shell of avocado slices.


For more serious dining, you can retreat to the banquettes that line the room's perimeter, which may be the best place to concentrate on chef David Coleman's surprisingly sophisticated fare. Having earned his chops at Union Pacific, it's hardly surprising that Coleman has a really sure way with seafood. An enormous glass tray holds five shockingly large oysters enveloped in a bracing cauliflower cream and topped with generous dollops of caviar. His duo of bluefin tuna is a felicitous pairing of a first-rate tuna tartare with a deconstructed napoleon using sashimi slices of tuna as its filling. And while not for every taste, his crispy eel is a masterpiece, perfectly cooked and nicely balanced by a blanket of watrercress and an accent of grapefruit slices. Moving on to mains, there's luscious skate in hazelnut butter and a supernal creation of lobster, taken out of the shell and perched atop a creamy grits-like bed of corn and black truffle.


True carnivores have nothing to be sorry about either. An unusually appealing "Peking Duck salad" turns out to be slices of duck prosciutto entangled with crunchy taro and lotus root. And friends at the next table had nothing but praise for the dry-aged rib-eye, which comes sliced over mustard greens, or the three-way lamb.


The dessert menu is still a work in progress, but fans of the brulee part in crème brulee will be thrilled by the kitchen's cardamom-spiked rendition, while a banana tartin is really for lemon-lovers. The house also has a nice selection of unusual teas to complement this part of the meal.


True, Duvet may not be everyone's cup of tea – especially those on a budget. (Spending a $100 per person won't be that hard.) But let's face it; you can definitely take the check lying down.
Review By: Brian Scott Lipton

Neighborhood: Chelsea

Entree Price: >$30

Payment: Amex Visa Mastercard


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