Solid Dinner at Crescent Grill (Long Island City, NY)

Exterior of Crescent Grill
The bar at Crescent Grill
Paintings by Elinore Schnurr
Exterior of Crescent Grill; At the bar; Paintings by Elinore Schnurr for LIC Arts Open at Crescent Grill

This past week was the start of Long Island City (LIC) Arts Open. One of the venues that was exhibiting solo art exhibitions was interestingly, at Crescent Grill. Crescent Grill is a new restaurant that also have an art gallery at the front half of the restaurant called Dougherty Gallery that it mixes and supports the local artists, like Elinore Schnurr seen above, and have very good food if you want to settle in for a meal.

Crescent Grill stands out for this particular end is because there aren’t that many good restaurants in this part of Long Island City. This restaurant has a decent wine and cocktail list and their food menu has a few creative twists that I really liked and they use local farm products.

Dining room with diners
PB&JWhite Peach Martini

While the art exhibition was still taking place, we settled in for dinner at the back of the restaurant. We started off with cocktails of PB&J ($14) and white peach martini ($14). The PB&J was a shaken cocktail of espresso, Baileys, Frangelico, Chambord, and milk. It’s sweet but not overtly so and it tastes more like a mocha and jelly cocktail but nevertheless, still a good strong cocktail. My white peach martini was a concoction of white peach purée, simple syrup, Russian Standard Vodka, and Triple Sec. This martini was too sweet for my preference and I think the simple syrup could be either cut in half or skipped altogether. However, the white peach flavor was good and I definitely tasted the vodka in a good way.

Wild Boar Tenderloin with cauliflower, braised baby romaine lettuce, ginger béarnaise

I rarely see wild boar on restaurant menus and opted for the wild boar tenderloin ($14) to start. The seared boar tenderloin was seared to medium-rare, dotted with colorful cauliflower, braised baby romaine lettuce, and ginger béarnaise. This was a very good dish; crunchy, vegetal sweetness from the vegetables and the boar was tender.

Asparagus salad with poached egg and maitake mushrooms, Serrano ham

The asparagus salad ($12) with poached egg and maitake mushrooms, and Serrano ham was delicious. The asparagus was pleasantly acidic as it was tossed in a vinaigrette. The poached egg and maitake mushrooms were silky accompaniments to the vegetable.

Seared Margaret duck breast with baby turnips, spring garlic, fiddlehead ferns, strawberry paint, natural jus

The seared Margaret duck breast ($29) with baby turnips, spring garlic, fiddlehead ferns, strawberry paint, natural jus was a very solid dish. The duck breast was cooked to the requested medium-rare and it was well seasoned. The vegetables were cooked nicely and their flavors made me think of the flavors of spring.

Pouring the parsley beurre blanc onto the butter poached lobster, crosnes, sea bass, and Thumbelina carrots
Butter poached lobster, crosnes, sea bass, Thumbelina carrots, parsley beurre blanc

The butter poached lobster ($34) was served with sea beans, baby turnips, sea bass, Thumbelina carrots, and have parsley beurre blanc poured tableside. It’s a delicious dish that was executed well. The sweet, tender, butter poached lobster tail worked well with the puck of sea bass fish cake found underneath. The vegetables complimented the flavors of the seafood well without dominating it and the sauce added some delicate flavors of the herb and rounded out the dish.

Macaroni and cheese

The side of lobster macaroni and cheese ($6 and $4 supplement for the lobster) was the most disappointing of what we had. The macaroni and cheese wasn’t cooked well that the starch used in the sauce hasn’t bloomed that it had an unpleasant grainy texture and the sauce was still thin, also the lack of lobster meat.

Almond mousseline raspberry tart
Our cups of coffee

We finished our meal with cups of coffee ($3 each) and an almond mousseline raspberry tart ($12) served with a side of vanilla ice cream. The tart was good – firm, crumbly crust with a creamy almond base topped with sweet-tart raspberries. The vanilla ice cream was delicious as it’s creamy and not too sweet.

Overall, Crescent Grill is a very solid restaurant and fills that void in the neighborhood. The servers are friendly and professional. The food is very good even though it’s a new restaurant and needs some time to work out its kinks. If I were to be in the area, I would definitely consider coming back.

To view more photos of this meal, please CLICK HERE or view the gallery below:

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Crescent Grill

38-40 Crescent Street
Queens, NY 11101
Phone: (718) 729-4040