I wanted to take advantage of a quiet Columbus Day to post my thoughts on our dinner at the Little Owl earlier this month. Dinner was a completely delightful affair. My friend, Shannon, who has been to many of NY’s fine restaurants on her various visits to the city, proclaimed the Little Owl her favorite NYC dining experience, which thrilled me to no end. The low-key, intimate atmosphere of the Little Owl is what sticks out about my last visit to the restaurant, but the food stole the show on this visit.
Shannon and I refrained from appetizers in order to save room for sides and dessert, but my husband started with the gravy meatball sliders. He kindly shared one with me and it was even better than I remembered. From my standpoint, Little Owl makes the best sliders in the city.
For our entrées, Shannon had the whole fish special – John Dory stuffed with herbs over a bed of lovely mushrooms. I had potato-wrapped scallops with spinach, capers and lemon-leek butter (I considered not getting the dish on account of the capers, but the waitress said that it would be no problem to remove them). My husband had roasted halibut w/chive mashed potatoes and lemon crème fraiche. The halibut was the weakest link on a relative basis, but it was delicious nonetheless.
We ordered three side dishes – French fries, brussel sprouts and cauliflower. Shannon and I agreed that the vegetable sides were slightly underdone (thus, lacking that delicious toasted quality of roasted vegetables), but the French fries were among the best I’ve had anywhere.
For dessert, we had apple crisp with hazelnut ice cream and pumpkin panna cotta. The pumpkin panna cotta was very good, but it was a bit too subtle and “grown up” for my tastes. The apple crisp was perfection and the hazelnut ice cream was just right with the crisp.
The Little Owl is worth every painful busy signal that you get when you call to make a reservation. The kind waitress let me know that they can almost always accommodate twos who walk in so we will back. Our wonderful dinner at the Little Owl also made me realize that it’s time to go back to sister restaurant, Market Table, which serves the best burger in NYC according to my husband. More on that later.