While on our latest fabulous date-retreat, and after our NBC Studios tour, my husband and I headed over to Rockefeller Center. We had passes to go ice skating at the rink, but the heavy rain outside had forced the rink to close for the day. We walked through the lower level of Rockefeller Center, where those passing by have their pick of shops, eateries, and other businesses.
Our pick for lunch that day was the Rock Center Café, a member of the Patina Restaurant Group. I had never eaten there before, but we chose it for their awesome views of the The Rockefeller Center Rink.
The atmosphere was casually elegant. The restaurant was busy, so we couldn’t get a table right next to the window, but it didn’t matter because the windows are so tall and so wide, that it would be difficult to have a seat without a view. The pouring rain added to the romantic element of our date, and from beginning to end the service from our waiter was great.
As I looked around the room, there were a few tourists as would be expected, but I also saw some New Yorkers (yes, you can tell), and even better, some families (though the children were older).
We started our meal with the Smoked Salmon Napoleon. The presentation was beautiful and the flavor divine. I’m not a huge fan of smoked salmon. I often find the smoked flavor too overpowering, but the combination with cream cheese…heavenly.
We also had soup. Clam Chowder for me and Tuscan White Bean and Escarole Soup with Pancetta for my husband. Both delicious.
For a moment, as we sat there, drinking our wine as the rain poured down on the skating rink and the flags of the world waved wildly in the wind, completely forgetting our real life of 3 kids and busy schedules and getting caught up in the moment of us and our flirtatious conversation.
I think that is probably one of the best experiences one can have at a restaurant. A moment of zen and complete joy brought on the ambiance and as well as the satisfaction and indulgence brought on by the food and wine.
Not sure how long we were there, we had no sense of time, nor did we care. But it is definitely a place I would love to bring my friends to in the future, as well as my husband (again). It’s a bit pricey, as to be expected for the restaurants in the area, and definitely a place you’d visit as a treat or special time out, but it’s worth the consideration for future plans to eat out. The lunch and dinner menus looked great as well, so I might just give those a try too. Maybe in the warmer, dryer weather, when the ice is melted away and the restaurants divide up the space to provide outdoor seating. Either way, a wonderful way to be in the center of it all.Rock Center Café Rockefeller Center 20 West 50th St. New York 10020 212 332 7620