Friday night, MM surprised me with a dinner at Craft for my birthday. It was very special because it was just him and me and it was my only birthday while being engaged.

I have been wanting to go to Craft for awhile because I am impressed with Tom Colicchio’s successes across cuisines from fine dining at Craft to sandwiches at ‘wichcraft. Being that Craft was the original, I definitely needed to try the food and experience the restaurant, and MM is even more amazing for knowing that was a desire of mine.

The design of the restaurant by Bentel and Bentel, falls in line with the simple and single ingredient menu with filament bulbs large cognac lather slabs covering the wall. I have heard the term before and Tom quoted it in his recent book, “Simple doesn’t mean simplistic” – this carried through with the food and the decor. This restaurant concentrates on and masters the integrity of great ingredients and skillful execution.

This became especially clear when we received our dishes and then took the first bite. I tend to go towards the fish on menus, so I ordered the Bigeye Tuna for a starter and the Striped Bass for my entree. Both were delicious, although I have had a better execution of similar dishes at Scarpetta. MM, on the other hand, ordered meat but then had to change his order when he saw the Poussin delivered to the table next to us. The chicken was prepared exactly as he loves it and the same way his mom makes it in Milano. He was able to please his tastebuds and have nostalgia in every bite.

Not knowing MM had already discussed a dessert with a candle with the restaurant, I accidentally passed up dessert to head out and be surprised again with a party! Luckily, I got the candle the next night at Double Crown with more friends.

43 East 19th Street

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