Vitae

It’s been way too long since I’ve eaten at Vitae. Oh, how I have missed those warm parker house rolls and veal ricotta sliders! Very happy to be introducing two friends to this amazing restaurant tonight. We shared a bunch of dishes: the veal sliders (of course), a beef tartare special (so glad we ordered it), Italian wedding soup (I cannot even begin to describe my excitement when I saw this on the menu — it’s one of my favorite soups ever), the whole brook trout with smoked fennel, yukon gold potato (super light and fresh), and the risotto with butternut squash, kale, chorizo, and duck confit (sounds like a lot of ingredients but they all worked in perfect harmony to create the most amazing flavors). We celebrated my friends’ recent birthdays with two yummy desserts, an apple tart with bourbon glazed apples and affogato with chocolate cinnamon gelatoI loved the Italian wedding soup so much that I just had to get an order to go, along with another order of those veal sliders. (Can you tell that I’m obsessed with them?) It was absolutely wonderful seeing Chef Edwin Bellanco again — he’s an incredibly talented chef and an amazing person. Thanks so much, Chef Edwin and the Vitae team, for yet another magnificent meal! Can’t wait to see you guys again soon — I’m coming back for more of that delicious Italian wedding soup!

Vitae: 4 East 46th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Madison)

Warm Parker House Rolls brushed with duck fat and sprinkled with sea salt

Amuse Bouches: homemade potato chip, fried oyster, pulled pork taco

Veal Ricotta Sliders

Italian Wedding Soup with chicken ricotta meatballs, lacinato kale, parmesan

Beef Tartare with quail egg and parmesan crisps

Risotto with butternut squash, kale, chorizo, duck confit

Whole Brook Trout with smoked fennel, yukon gold potato, malt vinegar aioli

Apple Tart with bourbon glazed apples, streusel, caramel and vanilla gelato

Affogato with chocolate cinnamon gelato, espresso, amaro cio ciaro

Vitae

Vitae [lunch]

It’s my birthday (yay!) and I’m excited to start the celebrations off with lunch at Vitae. Accompanied by my foodie bestie and partner in crime, SaraDISH, we kicked off our meal with a couple glasses of birthday bubbly. Day drinking is so much fun! :)  We were both starving so we chowed down on those amazing parker house rolls glazed in duck fat & sea salt and delightful amuse bouches, along with the veal ricotta sliders (my fave), pizzetta with caramelized onions, arugula, bacon, roasted tomatoes & gruyere, and skate with blood orange, baby fennel & citrus vinaigrette. Everything was delicious! For dessert, Chef Edwin Bellanco surprised me with two beautiful desserts: mascarpone cheesecake with candied kumquats, vanilla bean & sage and dark chocolate mousse with blood orange & hazelnuts. The mascarpone in the cheesecake made it so light and airy — I’m not a cheesecake fan, but this one was pretty amazing. A huge thank you to Chef Bellanco and the team at Vitae for a wonderful birthday lunch and yummy desserts! Now it’s time to head home, take a long nap, and get ready for tonight’s dinner at Osteria Morini. 😉

Vitae: 4 East 46th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Madison)

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Birthday bubbly!

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Warm Parker House Rolls glazed with duck fat and sea salt 

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Amuse bouches: Pulled Pork Taco, Tempura Prawn, Burrata Crostini

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Veal Ricotta Sliders 

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Super tender and juicy!

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Skate with blood orange, baby fennel, and citrus vinaigrette 

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Pizzetta with caramelized onions, arugula, bacon, roasted tomatoes, and gruyere

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Mascarpone cheesecake with candied kumquats, vanilla bean, and sage

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Dark chocolate mousse with blood orange and hazelnut

Vitae [lunch]

Vitae

I always love dining at Vitae.  Over the past year, it’s become a staple go-to restaurant, thanks to the amazing food and friendly service. This time around, my foodie friend and I indulged in some of our Vitae faves: those heavenly parker house rolls, the crispy pork belly, and pork schnitzel. Oh so good! We also sampled a few new items, including the tuna & hamachi crudo with hijiki seaweed and seared diver scallops in Thai curry sauce — one of Chef Edwin Bellanco’s signature dishes. A few creative sorbets and a decadent dark chocolate mousse with blood orange rounded out our meal. As always, many thanks to Chef Edwin and his team for another beautiful meal!

Vitae: 4 East 46th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Madison)

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Crystal Green Persuasion (Junipero gin, honey, cucumber, basil, mint, lemon juice)

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Warm Parker House Rolls glazed with duck fat and sea salt

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Amuse Bouches: Pulled Pork Taco, Tempura Shrimp, Burrata Crostini, Butternut Squash Soup

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Tuna & Hamachi crudo, hijiki seaweed, holland chile, lotus root and sriracha vinaigrette

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Crispy pork belly, cabbage, Parisienne apple, apple cider vinaigrette

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Pork Schnitzel

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Tasty sides: cranberry jam, cucumber, warm potato salad

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Seared diver scallops, cauliflower, golden raisins, cashews, Thai curry sauce

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Strawberry mint soda

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Lemon & pink peppercorn sorbet, chocolate sorbet, and hazelnut gelato

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Dark Chocolate Mousse with blood orange and hazelnut

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The dining room

Vitae

Vitae

Tonight I had the most amazing meal at Vitae. Joined by two close friends and my awesome boyfriend, we enjoyed dish after dish of incredible food by Chef Edwin Bellanco. The night started out with a few glasses of bubbly and was quickly followed by parker house rolls glazed with duck fat and sea salt (yes, they are as awesome as they sound!) and a lovely assortment of amuse bouches: pulled pork tacos, burrata crostini, fig & peach with feta, and honey dew foam & prosciutto with mint oil. What a great way to kick off the meal! The next course consisted of tempura prawns, crispy pork belly, veal ricotta sliders, and lobster pappardelle. The crispy pork belly had a few new components this time around: cabbage, parisienne apple, and apple cider vinaigrette — simply divine! It was one of my favorites. I’m also a huge fan of the moist & savory veal ricotta sliders, which I hope never come off of the menu. I snagged a few bites of the pappardelle and prawns — both were great. On to the next round! We feasted on pork schnitzel, shrimp risotto, whole bass, and lamb. I am obsessed with the pork schnitzel (super crispy and juicy), which was paired with these incredible sides (cucumber salad, warm potato salad, and cranberry jam). I could have eaten the sides as a meal — they were so good! I sampled bites of all of the other dishes and enjoyed each one. By this time, we were happy and stuffed to the brim. But how could we resist dessert? Especially when those desserts are pear tart tatin, earl grey tea cake, and chocolate panna cotta. All were fantastic, but it was the pear tart tatin that stole my heart. A million thanks to Chef Edwin for a phenomenal meal and for coming out to chat with us after dinner! In addition to being an immensely talented chef, he is such a warm, kind-hearted person for whom I have the utmost respect. We also loved our server, Jason, who was friendly, knowledgeable, and helped make our experience a fabulous one!

Vitae: 4 East 46th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Madison)

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Starting off the night with some bubbly

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Parker House Rolls glazed with duck fat and sea salt

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(from left to right) Pulled Pork Tacos, Burrata Crostini, Fig & Peach with Feta, and Honey Dew Foam & Prosciutto with Mint Oil

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Tempura Prawns, Pineapple, Kale, Soy-Ginger Vinaigrette

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Crispy Pork Belly, Cabbage, Parisienne Apple, Apple Cider Vinaigrette

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Veal Ricotta Sliders (Veal Ricotta Meatballs, Tomato Sauce, Parker House Roll)

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Lobster Pappardelle 

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Crystal Green Persuasion cocktail (Junipero gin, cucumber, honey, basil, mint, lemon juice) 

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Risotto, Laughing Bird Shrimp, Peas, Lemon, Sauce Americaine

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Whole Bass with Soba Noodles

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Pork Schnitzel (Warm Potato Salad, Cucumber, Cranberry Jam)

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Pear Tart Tatin with Caramel, Vanilla, Cardamom, Pisco

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Earl Grey Tea Cake, Huckleberry, Pumpkin Seed, Lemon, Buttermilk

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Chocolate Panna Cotta with Grape, Rosemary, Sage, Red Wine 

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View from the upstairs dining room

Vitae

Vitae

While searching for a good restaurant in the midtown area, a friend of mine came across Vitae on Yelp. Since it had positive reviews and the menu looked great, we decided to check it out. So glad that we did! I had just come from my first dinner of night (Sushi of Gari) and was planning on eating light. That went right out the window after the bread came out: Parker House Rolls glazed with duck fat and sprinkled with sea salt. They were fluffy and warm — simply to die for! I tried to order conservatively by choosing two appetizers instead of my normal four or five dishes.  The appetizers, Veal Ricotta Sliders and Crispy Pork Belly, ended up being practically the size of entrees! The veal sliders were insanely moist and flavorful (I’m a sucker for veal). The pork belly was complemented beautifully by the watermelon and had a nice ratio of meat to fat (I like my pork belly on the fatty side). I also sampled some of the entrees that my dining companions ordered, including the arctic char in coconut & lemongrass broth (loved it) and the buffalo with Honshimeji mushrooms.  The buffalo blew my mind — it was incredibly tender and had such an intense meaty/earthy flavor. I’m definitely ordering it next time I’m here! For dessert, we enjoyed a blackberry milk cake with pistachio and tarragon (unique and creative) as well as an assortment of tasty sorbets and ice cream. At the end of our meal, we were thrilled when Chef Edwin Bellanco came over to our table! He’s such a nice guy and an incredibly talented chef. I am very much looking forward to returning to Vitae to try the rest of the menu!

Vitae: 4 East 46th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Madison)

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Parker House Rolls with duck fat and sea salt

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Amuse Bouche: Prosciutto with honey dew foam and mint oil

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Veal Ricotta Sliders (Veal Ricotta Meatballs, Tomato Sauce, Parker House Roll)

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Crispy Pork Belly, Pickled Watermelon, Sunflower Seeds, Pork Ginger Glaze

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Bourbon Brownie ice cream, Watermelon Mezcal sorbet, Lavender Blueberry sorbet

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Blackberry Milk Cake, Pistachio, Tarragon, Rose, Ruby Port

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Bar and front dining room

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The main dining room

Vitae