Monday, November 21, 2011

Good Eats NYC: The Leopard

Last month, my in-laws invited me and the hubs to dinner at The Leopard des Artistes in the space formerly known as Cafe des Artistes, a mere stone's throw from Central Park. The Leopard serves yummy Southern Italian food and despite the more formal atmosphere (v. my usual haunts), we had a relaxing and delicious experience! Since I was unable to take my own photos, the below recap shows professional photos from various reviews :)

See here the pretty paintings! Note how no one is distracted by the artistic nudity.
Photo from The New York Times review
For the art buffs, some history from The Leopard's website:
"Rich in history, the landmarked Hotel des Artistes is the largest “studio” building in New York City. It was originally designed by George Mort Pollard and developed by Walter Russell as an artist’s cooperative apartment building in the beginning of the 20th century.

"The mural series by Howard Chandler Christy of “Fantasy Scenes with Naked Beauties”, were painted during the end of 1920’s, and completed by 1935, when Christy lived in New York City and had his studio at the Hotel des Artistes.

"The nine remarkable oil-on-canvas murals – some are mounted on wood while others are directly on the wall - are throughout the restaurant newly renovated space..."
Dining Room, Photo from The Leopard
Our party was warmly received and the hostess sat us near one of the many beautiful murals which are brightly lit in an otherwise dim romantic dining room. Dining with regulars, they recommended many things off the menu including the lentil and ricotta cakes which were crispy on the outside and warm and cheesy on the inside:
Photo from The Leopard
I also had the roasted red and yellow beets and watercress salad. I love beets and their with spicy sweetness was balanced by the salty gorgonzola and almonds.
Photo from The Leopard
For my main course I ordered the ravioli with artichoke and burrata which was in a tomato and cream sauce. I really liked it but unfortunately no snaps of it on the webs. Also ordered by my fellow diners was a simply and traditionally prepared dover sole.
Dover Sole, from The Bloomberg News
And to end, some espresso granita with fresh cream on top. I was shivering at the end because I am always cold but it was too tasty to stop!
Espresso Granita, The Bloomberg News
While The Leopard's dinner menu is on the pricier side, i.e. pastas and entrees in the $20-$35 range, they also offer a much more affordable brunch on weekends. The brunch menu includes your usual brunch entrees as well as their well-known pastas, homemade spaghetti in tomato and basil sauce and ravioli with artichoke and burrata, which are also offered on their dinner menu.

So if you're looking for an iconic dining experience in NYC or trying to impress some parents :), check out The Leopard!

The Leopard at Des Artistes
1 West 67th Street
New York, NY 10023
(212) 787-8767


Jessica said...

Sounds delicious!

Annie said...

thanks for sharing a taste of ny!

Jennie said...

Sounds like a good place to eat ... and it's pretty too!

lavenderpug said...

the paintings are so pretty! and the food looks delicious.