OK, we will admit: when you are looking for an amazing restaurant for that date you need to impress, the Upper East Side does not always come to mind.  Sure, there are the power steakhouses on the midtown scene that we all know and love, however a closer look reveals what many foodies have come to rely on for their favorite New American fare.  York Grill is commanding attention and certainly giving those club scene eateries in Meatpacking district a run for their money.

Nestled in the upper 80’s on York Avenue, this elegant neighborhood gem knows a thing or two about taking care of its regulars.  With a menu featuring fresh seafood, chops and sizzling steaks, Chef Stefan Wiles puts a heavy emphasis on working with the finest quality meats he can find and utilizing herbs and vegetables straight from his Hudson Valley garden.  Wiles comes to New York by way of New Mexico, bringing along a bevy of accolades he has earned over the years.  The 2006 James Beard Award Nominee graduated first in his class from our own French Culinary Institute, and has continued to blaze his own trail ever since.

From the minute you enter the warm, clubby dining room you get a sense that the hustle and bustle of the city is a million miles away.  Inside, a Modigliani-inspired wall mural takes center stage in the dining room and serves as a conversation piece before you even get to their comprehensive wine list.  Featuring carefully selected vintages from California, France and Australia/New Zealand, there are quite a few solid picks to choose from.  It’s also so refreshing to experience fabulous service without the pretentious attitude that usually comes with those flashier spots downtown.

Moving on to the first course, you won’t want to miss the Tuna Tartar appetizer with its mix of aioli and spices that give it an explosion of flavor.  This is a perfect gateway to York Grill’s masterpiece, the skirt steak over Idaho mashed potato, and don’t forget to ask for the quinoa (you will think you’ve died and gone to heaven!).  Obviously their top-seller after years of garnering a cult following, Chef Wiles knows better than to sell out of this popular piece of meat, but even on a crazy Friday night with 1,500 filets in the freezer he might get close.  Guests take one bite of his signature dish and become instantly hooked – they swear it is worth the trek to the UES alone.

There is no better way to end a savory meal than with a little bit of something sweet, and York Grill doesn’t disappoint.  Whether you order the crème brulee for yourself or share the flourless chocolate torte with molten chocolate inside, you are in for a treat.  Portions are generous and if you’ve ordered the prix fixe Sunday brunch you may even need to box it up for later.  Brunch includes a mimosa, glass of champagne or a bloody mary, and also comes with a basket of muffins and fresh fruit.  For under $20 per person, it simply cannot be beat.

The next time you are looking for just the right uptown spot for a sumptuous meal without the downtown attitude, take the road less traveled and experience this secret gem in Yorkville.  Become a fan on their Facebook page and take advantage of the complimentary glass of wine deal, or check out their four course Valentine’s Day prix fixe menu starting at under $40 featuring a keepsake gift for your sweetie.

Cheers,

JetSetleslie

York Grill
1690 York Ave
between 88th St & 89th St
New York, NY 10128
Upper East Side

Photos via The Epoch Times

 Four-Course Valentine’s Day Prix Fixe

 Amuse Bouche

 Appetizer

 Jerusalem Artichoke Soup – Lightly creamed and finished with a dollop of crème fraîche and cayenne dusted toasted pumpkin seeds

 Warm Romaine Salad with Shaved Pecorino Romano Cheese, Sundried tomatoes and pignoli nuts finished with a Parmesan Reggiano dressing

Baby Arugula Salad Tossed with dried apricots and toasted pecans in a light balsamic vinaigrette topped with crumbled Gorgonzola cheese

 Crispy Virginia Tidewater Crab Cake, Served over a shaved fennel and citrus salad with seasonally spice rémoulade

Yellowfin Tuna Tartar Mounted with ginger, capers, wakeme and Serrano aioli served with ponzu and Malanga root chips

Roman Style Braised Baby Artichoke and Charred Roma Tomato, Served with a baby red oak leaf salad tossed with toasted walnuts in a light walnut-sherry vinaigrette

 Nola Calamari, Served with Cajun spiced York rémoulade and Meyer lemon

 Entrées

Jumbo Gulf Shrimp and Bay Scallop Risotto, Tossed with salsa verde, English peas and fire roasted red peppers

 Grilled Atlantic Salmon, Over a crispy Panko crusted sushi rice cake topped with a shaved carrot salad with a drizzle of arugula emulsion

 Pan Seared Chatham Day Boat Cod, Over sautéed golden quinoa with baby tiger shrimp and scallion finished with a Veronique sauce drizzle and micro green crown

 One and a Quarter Pound Maine Lobster, Stuffed with jumbo blue crab served with whipped potatoes, braised haricot verts, drawn butter and lemon

 Pan Roasted Panko Crusted Rack of Lamb, Served with a sweet potato-gorgonzola gratin and jumbo grilled asparagus finished with a rosemary jus drizzle

 Grilled Marinated Skirt Steak, Our house specialty served with caramelized onions, baby carrots and roasted garlic whipped potatoes

 Grilled Filet Mignon, With oven dried paprika Roma tomatoes served with roasted garlic whipped potatoes, salsa verde, braised haricot verts finished with a burgundy demi glace

 Pan Roasted Crispy “Murray’s” Boneless Free Range Half Chicken, Served with a Portobello, Crimini and oyster mushroom chasseur sauce and roasted garlic whipped Yukon gold potatoes

Dessert