Ok, so I wanted to check out Beauty and Essex for awhile, so I made a last minute dinner reservation on Opentable because I felt like getting all dolled up. I read some really solid reviews and I was very excited for date night. First, let me say this place is pricey, it’s a NYC trendy hotspot so we were prepared. I would usually wait for a special occasion such as an anniversary or Birthday to check this place out but I really didn’t want to wait. Also, I get nervous going to new places on a special occasions, just in case we are left disappointed.
We made 8pm dinner reservations and we arrived just in time. We were super lucky and found parking right out front! The place is a Pawn Shop from the outside, which is pretty cool and different. They have security that opens the door to let you into the restaurant and they have security outside the Pawn shop. (the area the restaurant is in is kind of sketchy). The restaurant is gorgeous, I tell the hostess my name and she gives us a buzzer that will let us know when our table is ready. I have to tell you the staff did not seem pretentious at all, even though a lot of reviews suggested it. She tells us we can wait at the bar, so we go to the bar on the main floor and have a seat in the lounge area. It was a nice crowd with lots of pretty, trendy people. The bar and lounge area was not overwhelmingly busy which I liked. I ordered a Beauty Elixir(oxley gin, cucumber, strawberry,sparking rose’)cocktail which was good(it was nice and strong just how I like it). FYI, cocktails are a whopping $16. Hubby was boring and got a beer(or manly as he calls it). After about 20 minutes we were brought to our table on the first floor of the restaurant. The waitress came over right away and she was very sweet. She gave us the run down of how the dishes are meant to be share. She said 2 people usually order and share 4-6 dishes. We ordered the Grilled Cheese Smoked Bacon and Tomato Soup Dumplings(which is a must). It is one of the most popular dishes on the menu. I then ordered the Oven Braised Chicken Meatballs with Fresh Ricotta(suggested by the waitress and now my fav dish!), Chile Relleno Empanadas(good),Ginger Teriyaki Glazed Ribs(very good, fell right of the bone), and Salt and Vinegar Fries(awesome). I was pleased with our choices and the food came out promptly. I ordered a second Beauty Elixir and I was on cloud 9. Of course we had to have the full dining experience so we ordered dessert. We picked a couple of the Maker’s Mark Milkshake Shots(awesome) and the Petit Cupcakes (red velvet with cream cheese frosting and guinness cake with bailey’s frosting) which were also good. The table next to us ordered the box of donuts and they looked delicious. Before I left I had to check out the ladies room, of course. I heard they served complimentary champagne so I def had to check it out. FYI, it is in the downstairs bathroom, I made the mistake of going into the wrong bathroom on the main floor and there is only one stall with no champagne! Next time I will make a few trips to that bathroom instead of just one. As long as you leave the girl a tip and bring your ID(the girl serving the champagne did ID me) it should be fine. She told me to come back as many times as I wanted but I did tip her well. I will definitely return, I have nothing negative to say.
If your looking for a trendy place with great ambiance and amazing food this is the place to go. I’m also eager to check out their brunch so I can try the red velvet waffles.