HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS
December 26, 2014
While everyone was busy traveling back to their hometown for the holidays, my roommate and I decided it would be nice to spend Christmas in New York City.
Manhattan is probably the most festive city in the country when it comes to Christmas. From the tree at Rockefeller Center to the ice Skating Rink at Bryant Park to the storefront windows on 5th avenue, this city knows how to decorate. That’s why we thought it would be great to forgo airport security and our small towns (and our families) and stay put.
For me growing up, Christmas Eve was always more important than actual Christmas day. That’s when we would go out to a big fancy dinner, go to mass, and open up all of our presents. Christmas day was essentially just a day to relax on the couch, watch Home Alone 2, and decide just what gifts we wanted to keep or what we needed to return the next day.
So, keeping the same tradition, I needed to find a great restaurant for Christmas Eve dinner. I went on OpenTable to find a great spot. My roommate and I both knew we wanted to be somewhere in the Village, so that made the searching a little bit easier, but not completely. There are so many amazing little restaurants in the Village that it was incredibly hard to pick one out.
But the one that stood out to me and my roommate was this quaint little place called “Home”. Home is New Yorks original farm-to-table restaurant and is located on Cornelia Street in the West Village. It only seats 30 people at a time and it has the look and feel of sitting at a kitchen table at your house. We both looked at the menu and atmosphere and decided that this was the spot we would have our Christmas Eve dinner at. It was official – we were going Home for the Holidays.
Like pretty much every other restaurant in NYC, Home was featuring a pre-fix dinner menu for 60$
The menu consisted of three courses: A choice of an appetizer (cream of mushroom soup or a grilled pear and blue cheese salad), a family-style main course, and a choice of dessert (freshly baked Christmas cookies with eggnog or a pound cake with vanilla custard).
Since there were 2 of us, we thought we would each order one of the appetizers and desserts so we could try everything on the menu. They were also offering a wine pairing for 20$ extra, where they would select a glass of wine to go with your appetizer and entrée. Knowing that 2 glasses of wine for 20$ in New York was a pretty good deal, we took the offer and ordered our appetizers.
While waiting for our first course, we were brought freshly-baked bread and a maple butter spread. I don’t think I could describe in words how amazing this butter was. It was so sweet and creamy that I filled up on bread before the appetizer even appeared.
We were both given a glass of wine, a chardonnay to go with the pear salad and a pinot noir to go with the mushroom soup. The salad consisted of spinach leaves tossed in a mustard vinaigrette topped with a grilled pear halve stuffed with warm blue cheese. I’m not really a huge pear-person, but paired (get it?) with the blue cheese was such an excellent combination that Lacy and I were fighting over who got the last bite.
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The cream of mushroom soup was amazing, as well. Like salads, I am not much a soup fan either, but this was, hands down, the best soup I have ever had in my entire life. It was so rich and flavorful that I almost asked for a second bowl to go.
Next up was the family style entrée. We got a serving of young hens, salmon root, green bean and almond brioche, scalloped potatoes and glazed root vegetables.
Since Lacy doesn’t eat meat and I don’t eat fish, it worked out perfectly. The chicken was so tender and stuffed with sage, barley and dates. Because I need to expand my horizons, I tasted a small piece of the salmon fritter and thought it was really good! Well, for fish, anyways.
Everything else on the plate was equally good. The potatoes, green beans and root vegetables all were cooked to perfection and carried so much flavor. You could really taste the difference of just how fresh this entire meal was.
Lastly, for dessert, we ordered one of each. The eggnog and selection of cookies was festive while the pound cake was out of this world. Topped with vanilla custard, gingerbread and walnut pudding, it was the most decadent dessert I had ever had.
Halfway through with our desserts, the waitress came by with a glass of whiskey and told me this was for my eggnog. Without even questioning her, I poured the contents into my eggnog glass and took a huge sip. Something I learned from that experience? I cannot handle whiskey. Like, at all.
I mean, I can still feel it burning on my throat.
Home Restaurant was the perfect place to spend Christmas Eve. It was so cozy and comfortable that it really did make you feel like you were at an actual home. If you love good food and are interested in farm-to-table dining, I suggest you all take a stroll through the West Village and find yourself Home.
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas full of family, friends, and loved ones and have a happy and healthy New Year!