Eating Our Way Through the Ace Hotel, Pt. I: The John Dory

My job has had me travelling to the New York area a lot lately, so on a recent weekend, Eliza flew up to meet me for a weekend in the city. In our continuing effort to be like Jeff and Elizabeth, we decided to try out the Ace Hotel. I would imagine that anyone who stays there and owns a camera takes this exact shot.

The Ace itself was great. The shower alone is worth the cost of the room. Even better, the place is full of good food and coffee. We started every day at Stumptown Coffee Roasters. They’re based out of Portland, so they know a thing or two about coffee. In this photo Eliza’s expression is called “I’ve grown to tolerate, perhaps even enjoy, your constant photo taking.”

We don’t call ourselves “foodies.” For one, the term gives me the willies. More importantly, “foodies” tend to take the fun out of eating. For us, fun is the whole point. So we’re not the kind of people who know the names of chefs. A notable exception to that rule, though, is April Bloomfield, the mastermind behind the Spotted Pig. It helps that the New Yorker recently ran a profile of her. The occasion for that profile was the opening of Bloomfield’s latest venture, The John Dory Oyster Bar, conveniently attached to the Ace.

Naturally, we started off with oysters. This was a very happy meal for Eliza especially. Shellfish as far as the eye could see.

Next up were a couple of soft boiled eggs, served with sea salt and parsley-butter slathered crostini.

Here was some kind of oyster soup with uni crostini. That’s uni as in sea urchin. This little dish is the kind of thing that makes you search in vain for appropriate metaphors. Let’s just say my mouth is literally watering as I write this.

Here was some other kind of mussel or clam-based soup. I’m telling you: Eliza can’t get enough shellfish. But I wasn’t complaining. The weekend was off to a lovely start.

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