This past Labor Day weekend, I had brunch with my girl friends at Boulud Sud. As you might know, I am a fan of this restaurant when lunch with my mother and my friends are familiar with the Boulud brand but ate at this particular restaurant for the first time. Heck, even one of them lives close by one particular dessert (I’ll inform you soon which) convert her here to be a regular.
We started with large glazed terracotta bowls of delectable Mediterranean dips and spreads of earthy, spicy Moroccan hummus, hummus, briny and creamy taramosalata, and delectable babaganoush along with the various house made, crispy flatbreads with different spices and long, thin potato chips generously flecked with dill and salt. The latter is sublime with the taramosalata.
With a few exceptions (like the aforementioned dips), we mostly stuck with their weekend brunch prix fixe menu (3 courses for $32) and since there was four of us, we had one of each first course and shared. The only accidental repeat was the Mediterranean mezze though their herbaceous and bright green falafel was delicious. The Italian salumi board was great. The gazpacho was almost as good as what I have had in Barcelona – intensely flavored of the beautiful tomatoes of the late summer season and the fruity olive oil drizzled on top. The heirloom watermelon salad was a savior for us to have some delicious, peppery arugula for the meal and the sweet watermelon (in yellow and pink-red) to sweeten the salad.
For our main courses, I had the Tunisian brik, a puffy, deep fried triangle of thin warka pastry (similar to phyllo) filled with confit tuna, capers, Gruyère, and topped with a local hen egg. Substantial but not too heavy, and the subtle flavors of the tuna and Gruyère worked. I loved the crispy pastry.
The rest of my group had the pimentón steak and eggs, an earthy, spicy take of the traditional brunch dish of steak and eggs was delicious, especially with the crispy, fried potatoes. The ratatouille was vegetarian friendly but tasted hearty and delectable with the hen’s egg. The Salad Niçoise was delicious as it looks, especially with that anchovy.
When we arrived to desserts, we were surprised with the restaurant’s signature (well deserved title) grapefruit givré. The fluffy halvah top that almost have the texture of cotton candy but has intense nutty flavor of sesame, sesame foam, a crunchy tuile, and inside the hollowed fruit was grapefruit sorbet dotted with marmalade and halvah crumble and rose loukom, like very soft Turkish delight. No two bites are ever the same for this dessert and it’s undeniably refreshing and intensely flavored. (One of my friends who live in the Upper West Side said she’ll consider coming here after her judo class during the evening as her treat very soon.)
We also had the orange blossom panna cotta, the trio of ice creams and sorbet, and the black sesame gateaux. All were delicious and had great texture and flavors, but after having that givré, you can’t even compare.
We had a great time in a casual yet sophisticated setting. The food was great, service was attentive without being overbearing. It’s worth going back to.
To view more photos of this meal, please CLICK HERE or view the gallery below:[alpine-phototile-for-flickr src=”set” uid=”26389565@N00″ sid=”72157646656868960″ imgl=”flickr” shuffle=”1″ style=”gallery” row=”4″ grwidth=”1200″ grheight=”800″ size=”640″ num=”30″ shadow=”1″ border=”1″ align=”center” max=”100″]
20 W 64th St (between Broadway & Central Park West)
New York, NY 10023
Phone: (212) 595-1313