Fork and Filet Knife have not sat down for a meal in a very long time. There was a time when culinary adventures were our favorite thing in the world – but, as John Lennon said ‘Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans’. The thing Fork likes best about old cutlery is the way things just pick up seamlessly and continue as though no time nor tarnish has gone by.
This is what brought us to Odeon. In it’s hayday Odeon was the coolest place in Tribeca, and while it is now a little long in the tooth, Odeon is still a wonderful restaurant – is it a restaurant, a bistro, a grill, perhaps a tavern? What it definitely is is casual and still attracts a hip clientele. It has a very old-fashioned feel to it – the swinging doors to the kitchen and the wooden phone booths down near the rest rooms are great.
When we were first shown to our table the restaurant was empty so the table was fine. As the restaurant became more crowded every waiter and busboy that walked past our table banged into Fork’s chair. Every bang got Fork’s tines a little more twisted. A quick word with the lovely manager and our table was moved.
In between the laughing and talking we managed to order an appetizer. We ordered Spicy Chicken Dumplings. Fork wasn’t too sure what this was going to be. Spicy chicken dumplings with a Maytag blue cheese dipping sauce. But what arrived was amazing. They were little dumplings filled with what amounted to boneless buffalo chicken. They had a great spicy kick and the blue cheese dipping sauce turned out to be absolutely perfect. Sitting next to the dumplings was a little cool pile of vinegary slaw. Just the right bit of coolness to soothe the bote of the dumplings. Each dumpling was about a bite and half, Fork and Filet Knife thought they were a bit on the small side.
For a main course, Filet Knife ordered the House Made Rigatoni with braised short rib ragout and asiago cheese. The ragout itself was fantastic. Very smokey and flavorful. The asiago cheese, which can be overpowering, was a good compliment to the rich, heartiness o the braised short ribs. The only real problem with this dish was the pasta! It was a little too mushy. Yes, it was fresh pasta, and yes it is naturally softer, but this was too mushy.
Fork ordered the All Natural Angus Hangar Steak served with confit potato, asparagus and béarnaise sauce. The steak was beautiful. Beautifully cooked, beautifully presented and delicious. The béarnaise sauce was divine. The potato confit was very good (if you could find the two or three thin slices of potato), as were the asparagus. But somewhere on that plate, Fork is not sure where it came from, there was the saltiest thing ever. It was under everything. It was like opening a salt shaker and dumping it your mouth. Terribly off putting!
Now dessert. If dessert is good then your meal is good – usually. And this dessert was very good. It was a sophisticated Smore. A round disk of graham cracker crust, about 3″ wide and 1/2″ high, with a pool of chocolate on top, then a thick layer of marshmallow that’s been torched. Wowzer was it good! But, wait, that’s not it! There was a scoop of hazelnut icecream with toasted hazelnuts underneath and another burnished marshmallow on the side. Do I wish I had the camera and a picture, you would all be drooling!
All in all a pretty terrific place. A little noisy and our waiter a little obnoxious. I suppose he thought we were the type of cutlery that were supposed to be impressed with Odeon and the fact that he works there. Yes, you work there. Do your job and keep the attitude in check, remember you work for tips.