Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Lunch at La Fonda Del Sol -- love it!

As much as I'm a foodie, I'm also a creature of habit.  I knew I had eaten at the same restaurant around Grand Central way too many times when the waiters all know me by name, and they hostess seats me and says "Miss Nelson, we've got your favorite table for you."  So I was glad when my lunch companion suggested eating at La Fonda Del Sol -- although I've been there a few times,  I don't have a table there with my name on it!

LFDS is actually two restaurants in one -- there's a formal dining room upstairs, and a tapas bar on the main level.  The food is equally delicious in both places, but I enjoy sharing lots of small plates rather than having one main course.  (Note: I wrote about the restaurant a year ago, and since then I think the food and service have improved tremendously. And besides, who wouldn't be happy when seated on bright red chairs!)

I recently ate at LFDS for lunch and then also met some friends for drinks and snacks after work, so I've happily sampled a variety of foods from the tapas menu.  Here are a few of my favorites:

Tuna Tacos -- totally delish!  The tuna is fresh, the taco shells are crispy, and the bit of quacamole is a nice touch.  The only downside is that they really mean "small plates" and you only get two tacos. If you want to share, you may want a double order!

Meat Empanadas -- maybe it's because I've been on a no-carb diet for a few weeks, or maybe there's just something about a savory pie, but whatever it is, I totally love these. 

Pork meetballs with manchego cheese.  You'll want to lick the toothpick clean, or ask for a spoon to get every last drop of sauce!

I wasn't impressed with the artisan cheeses -- go to Artisanal if you want great cheese! But the marcona almonds and olives are a fun treat.

If you want something heartier, the blackened yellowfin tuna with tomato marmalade is wonderful, and so is LFDS version of the chop-chop salad -- I think it's the buttermilk lime dressing that adds the punch.

The Arroz con Pollo (crispy chicken with Spanish rice) has been hit or miss -- the last time I had it, I was disappointed in the lack of kick to the rice, but the chicken was perfectly cooked.  There are so many other fabulous items on the menu that are worth sampling that I'd check those out first before ordering this dish.

I made the mistake of actually looking at the dessert menu the last time I was there, and my lunch companion and I ended up sharing the Buneuelos/Cinnamon Fritters.  OK, think "hot fried cakey-donuts" that you can dip in three different sauces -- salty caramel, orange chocolate, or maracuay peppercorn.  This is definitely another dish where you'll want a spoon to get every drop of the dipping sauces, and you'll wans to lick the cinnamon and sugar off your fingers.  Don't order this unless you're prepared to take a nap after lunch! 

My second choice of dessertwas the Seis Leches Cake -- we didn't end up ordering it, but I think I need to go back to LFDS just so I can try it.

There are so many other items on the menu -- I can't wait to go back for more!


Here's the link to the website: http://www.patinagroup.com/restaurant.php?restaurants_id=19