The night started off pretty great – there were loads of local politicians and special guests in attendance, like Senator Michael Gianaris and Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas, and the restaurant was completely packed. We definitely saw the changes in the space. The color scheme is a lot brighter than before, and the partition between bar and dining area has been removed – making the restaurant a lot more airy.
In light of their new chef, The Astor Room has completely changed their menu. The menu now is a bit smaller, but it’s more concise. It’s also a little more accessible and filled with well known favorites. We started our meal with the grilled octopus, which has citrus, bread crumbs, corn and sherry vinegar. It was tasty, but not our favorite meal of the night.
For entrees, we tried the skirt steak, whole chilled lobster salad, and the mac and cheese. Our absolute favorite was easily the lobster salad – it’s amazing what a difference you can tell when you’re having really great, fresh seafood. This isn’t surprising, as the Astor Room has always been known for their seafood. The mac and cheese was a close contender, though, and it’s hard to mess up such a classic. The bacon and peas on top added to the already hearty dish, which is made with swiss, fontina, and cheddar cheese.
To go with our steak, our server suggested the “Front poorch” merlot, which was an absolutely amazing pairing. In general, the staff was extremely kind and helpful, and they seemed just as excited about the re-opening as we were. We also had the Mary Pickford cocktail, which was heavenly.
One of the coolest additions to the Astor Room is the outdoor seating. Now, up until yesterday, we were thinking the same old tables on the sidewalk outdoor seating, but the Astor Room has done so much more than that. There’s a special outdoor area, and your waitress swipes you in to enter the area. It gives the whole place an exclusive vibe, and we loved it.
Overall, we’re loving the direction the Astor Room has gone it. We were worried it might lose some if its classic, 1920’s feel, but it hasn’t. They’ll be sticking to their live jazz music nights, and happy hour specials. While it’s been updated, it hasn’t lost its glam and charm – and we’re glad we still have a Gatsby-esque restaurant to visit when we’re feeling glitzy.
Now, we want you to see the Astor Room for yourself. This is your last chance to enter our contest for two Astor Room gift cards – we’ll be announcing a winner tomorrow!