Culinary Safari, The Adventure Begins!


8 Courses, 8 Places, 8 People on 1 Night….

After weeks of preparation and collaboration the Culinary Safari is planned! The team is in place, the reservations are locked in and we are ready to hit the concrete jungle for our first ever CULINARY SAFARI… here’s how it plays out!


Eataly (4-4:45) Private tour of the marketplace to get us fired up for the exciting journey that lies ahead!

menu: Italian Cured Meats, Cheese & Olives

Mermaid Oyster Bar (5-5:45) Kevin and Todd from Mermaid Oyster are opening up the place early for the crew to toast our adventure and take down oysters!

menu: Raw Bar Tower

15 East (6-645) Another generous destination opening up their doors early to accommodate sushi cravings and we are ready for their NINJA style delivery of perfection!

menu: Fukko “Arai, Maguro “Yamakake, Sashimi Tartar of Blue Fin, TaKo Yawarakani, Sashimi Special

Barbouina (7-7:45) Every Safari needs a Mediterranean stop

menu: Meze Platter

SD26(7:45-8:35) The ever sought after Pasta course…plus according to their web-site White Truffles have arrived!

menu:  “Uovo” Egg Yolk Ravioli, Chitarra SD26, Pumpkin Ravioli, Gnocchi w/ Mussels

Mesa Grill (8:45-9:45) Entrees that pop with flavor and spice are sure thing at Bobby Flay’s place.

menu: Spice Rubbed NY Strip Steak, Lamb Shank, Pan Roasted Venison, New Mexican Spiced Pork Tenderloin, Mango & Spice Crusted Tuna

DBGB (10-10:30) Dessert they say will help settle your stomach after a big meal.  I think it’s safe to say we’re going to need some dessert tonight!

menu: Chocolate Peanut Sunday, Spiced Pumpkin Cake, Souffle Chaud, Caramel Pear Napoleon

D.B.A. (10:45 – TBD)  End the evening with great tunes, high energy (which will be needed to keep us on two feet) and beverages!

menu: People’s Choice! – check out the drink list here b/c it’s fantastic.

We ended up calling an audible for the 8th and final destination.  Rather than going to D.B.A. we collectively decided to go to the lounge area of Double Crown, called Madam Geneva

Planning Archives:

Get Guide Details here…


Food Decor Service Cost
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Cloned from the Turin original, this colossal Italian food hall opposite Madison Square Park has illustrious backers (Mario Batali, Joe and Lidia Bastianich) and features over 20 departments, including produce, seafood, cheese, pasta and pizza stations, as well as a coffee bar, wine store and a small steakhouse called Manzo; while the sprawling space is primarily a retail operation, the casual mood (and luscious offerings) encourages spontaneous dining, with counters, barstools and tables scattered throughout.

Mermaid Oyster Bar

Food Decor Service Cost
21 18 19 $43

Like a “Nantucket getaway”, these “quaint”, “casual” seafarers – including a new raw bar–focused Village outpost – serve “fantabulous” fish and “luscious” “lobstah rolls” “without pretense” to a “lively” clientele; they “don’t sink your budget”, and the “complimentary chocolate pudding” is a “sweet finish.”

15 East

Food Decor Service Cost
25 22 23 $83

“Fish bliss” awaits at the sushi bar of this “refined” Union Square Japanese from the Tocqueville team; the “exquisite omakases” are “on par with the best” in town, while the “calming”, “quiet” milieu and “pro service” are “perfect accompaniments” to a meal as “unforgettable” as the “mind-blowing” tabs.


Food Decor Service Cost
21 23 20 $49

The “impressive”, vaulted-ceilinged setting and “good-looking” clientele are a “feast for the eyes” at this “sceney” Flatiron Med where “buzzing” crowds convene for “delish” food and drink from an “accommodating” team; sure, it’s “pricey” and “not for conversation”, but that doesn’t hurt its “popularity.”


Food Decor Service Cost
22 23 22 $69

In a “molto chic” “soaring”, “contemporary” space opposite Madison Park, this “sexier” San Domenico “reincarnation” puts forth “innovative” Italian cuisine in your choice of a “terrific” front wine bar or “loft”-like dining room, both “presided over with grace” by “father-daughter” team Tony and Marisa May; a few mind the “relentlessly modern” decor and “pricey” tabs, but to most it’s simply a “winner.”

Mesa Grill

Food Decor Service Cost
23 20 21 $58

“His food tastes even better than it looks on TV” fawn fans of “Food Network” lothario Bobby Flay’s “high-energy” Flatiron Southwestern, whose “bright flavors” are “still a crowd-pleaser”; some give the “dated” setting a chili reception, but “affable” service keeps things copacetic.


Food Decor Service Cost
22 23 21 $50

Chef Daniel Boulud gets “hip” at this “trendy” Bowery yearling where the “meat-centric” French menu is built around burgers and sausages washed down with an “expansive” beer list; the “open kitchen” and “industrial decor” (think “copper pots” and “concrete floors”) make for “can’t-hear-yourself-chew” acoustics, but everyone’s having too much “fun” to care.

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