Marea blew us away. I think that says it all. I don't often open with such bold statements.
Here's a bolder statement: I like Marea more than Le Bernardin.
We indulged in the Menu del Mare.
Crostini with sea urchin, lardo, sea salt.
East and West Coast oysters served with Morellino mignonette and cucumber-lemon vinegar.
Assaggio di tre (tasting of three crudo) -- (1) whiting fish, salsa crudo; (2) shrimp, cucumber; (3) mackerel, mushrooms, vin.
Astice -- Nova Scotia lobster, burrata, eggplant al funghetto, basil.
Soft-shell crab, radicchio, orange, ham, beans.
Delicately fried crustacean like nothing else you've ever tasted.
Fusilli, red-wine-braised octopus, bone marrow.
Makes love to your taste buds like a pasta Casanova.
Branzino -- local striped bass, roasted eggplant, fava, grilled ramps, apricot mostarda.
(1) Panna cotta -- fromage blanc panna cotta, mandarin orange, pink peppercorn, thyme; (2) bomboloni -- fried doughnut holes, lemon cream, prickly pear sorbet, cassis; (3) cioccolato bianco e pompelmo -- white chocolate honey mousse, pine nut grapefruit, basil.
Silky and smooth, hot and golden, and rich and tart all on one plate.
Coffee and mignardise.
Truly otherworldly from beginning to end. Few meals are this perfect. Go.