TGA NYC: The Experience
I don’t know how, but it took me a whole year to get over to TGA NYC, the luxe sports bar located on the ground floor of the midtown Crowne Plaza Hotel. Still, no need to whine about lost time. I’ve been to TGA, I’ve tried it, and the verdict is in: I love it.
A high step above the usual midtown sports bar, TGA is practically a carefully designed and high ceilinged piece of modern art. Even now, decorated for the holidays, the white christmas trees and twinkling lights remind guests that TGA isn’t just an ordinary “Done with the grind of the day” after work drink spot -- it’s a cool, “I made a zillion dollars out of nothing,” after work drink spot, complete with a back-alley beer garden and creative cocktails. And then, there’s the food.
My friend and I started out with a whopping three appetizers: A Loaded Mac and Cheese with shrimp, short rib, and bacon; the TGA Jumbo Crab Cake, served with pineapple relish, sour cream, and black bean sauce; and Risotto Croquettes filled with a creamy truffle sauce. Everything was delicious -- I stuffed myself silly -- but I have to give the top prize to the crab cake. I don’t mind pineapple on pizza, but I now love pineapple on crab cake. Not a combination I would have expected, but definitely one I hope to try again in the future.
The real star of the meal, however, was the risotto I ordered for my entree. While the dish can be ordered with steak, shrimp, mushrooms, or asparagus, I, at the recommendation of my waiter, chose the three cheese. I was not disappointed. My biggest fear with risotto is that it’ll be bland, but the three cheese was a far cry from -- my friend ended up abandoning his amazingly seasoned Braised Beef Short Rib to eat what, as he put it, was “the best risotto he’s ever had.”
A huge shout out to Chef Israel Calderon for his wonderful dishes and beautiful presentation. TGA NYC is truly an experience, and in addition to breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a happy hour, they offer what’s sure to be a world-class bottomless brunch on the weekends. So check it out! And maybe I’ll see you there -- because I’ve already made another reservation.