One down for restaurant week! Tonight Zoe and I met up at BONDST to try out their restaurant week dinner. I'd been to BONDST before but just for drinks at the lounge, and was always curious about their food. I started with a yuzu caipirinha at the bar, which I picked because it had calamansi in it. Calamansi is a type of lime that's widely available in the Philippines, but I rarely come across it in this part of the world so I just pounced. That familiar tartness in my caipirinha was a nice way to start off my meal.
BONDST offers a rather generous restaurant week meal because of its "bento" style. You start normally enough, with a choice between salad or miso soup. Your main dish, however, is served "bento" style. It comes with three other small bites (crispy shrimp, some braised hijiki, and a steamed yuba dumpling) as well as your choice between sushi rolls or sashimi. The main courses offered are either steamed cod or strip steak. For dessert, two of the choices are a molten chocolate cake and a lychee panna cotta.
Zoe and I ended up ordering completely different things, as you'll see in the pictures below. My meal is on the left side while hers is on the right.
The salad was a great starter, especially since I've been eating so much junk lately. I quite liked the crunchy noodles on top and ginger dressing always gets my appetite going. I was quite pleased with my "bento" though last November's trip to Tokyo has just ruined the sushi experience for me. The sashimi I had was not bad at all, but since the memories of Tokyo's succulent, ultra fresh otoro and nigiri are still vivid in my mind, BONDST's sashimi was almost inconsequential. The dumpling I thought was alright but ordinary, and the hijiki was negligible. The steak was nicely medium rare, as I like it, and had great flavor but still nothing to write home about. Zoe felt similarly about her food. For the most part, the dishes were just okay—although her cod was quite delicious. The meat was plump and juicy, and the sweet yuzu sauce just gave it great flavor. What I liked most about this meal was that it was generous and had good variety. It was not mindblowing, but it's a very nice meal to have while having good conversation with a friend. Plus, I was stuffed by the time I cleared my plate so it's good value for money.
What I did passionately love was my dessert. The lychee flavored panna cotta was just so light yet satisfying. I loved that they decided to use lychee to flavor it. It ranks up there among my favorite panna cottas ever (#1 is still held by Kittichai's jasmine flavored panna cotta). Zoe's dessert, a molten chocolate cake served with a scoop of espresso ice cream, was equally delish, just richer. A great way to send me off to my next stop for the night: French Tuesdays' pink party at Nikki Midtown! More on that tomorrow ... for now, off to bed!
BONDST is located at 6 Bond Street near Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012 40.Tel. 212-777-2500