Last week, I went to John Dory Oyster Bar for a decadent lunch to celebrate with an ex-New Yoker friend, who was in town during the summer break from his Ph. D studies in Iowa. As an inveterate gourmet, my friend wanted to try oysters at John Dory Oyster Bar, which is also conveniently in the neighborhood.
First, John Dory has a first-rate cocktail list (alas, but expensive at average $14 per cocktail, but perhaps that is normal in Manhattan) that goes very well with the seafood. I ordered Negroni Sbagliato (Prosecco instead of gin in normal negroni), which was very refreshing for a summer afternoon. We ordered half-dozen oysters from 3 different regions: Long Island, Washington State and British Columbia. The oysters from British Columbia were sweet and briny and tasted of ocean. In fact, all the oysters at John Dory were extremely fresh and high quality. I also liked the accompanying mignonette sauce that had some heat with an addition of jalapeno peppers.
We also ordered a few small plates to augment the oysters: Escarole salad with anchovy dressing ($9.50), roasted pork sandwich with tuna mayonaise ($16), chorizo stuffed squid with tomato ($16), excellent parker house rolls ($4.50) and terrine of halibut with radish salad ($14). They were all really excellent, and I especially enjoyed the stuffed squid!
John Dory Oyster Bar, 1196 Broadway (@29th Street in the Ace Hotel) New York, NY 10001. The closest subway station is the 28th Street N/R Station. No reservations. Dinner time wait can be long. We were there at noon when they open for lunch and we got a table right away.