|The pearlescent ceiling.|
|Fancy Clam Chowder|
wide, shallow bowl featuring two humongous in-shell clams in a silky-rich broth, plus more clams and tender chunked potatoes floating within.
Aside from roasted Bell & Evans half chicken, whose accompanying hot lettuce with hen of the woods and radishes almost made me order it, the entrees are purely ocean-derived. My Block Island swordfish retained it signature meatiness which is normally achieved on the grill, but the heavy golden crust belied its treatment from a searingly hot flattop- that, and a generous dose of fat. Oh, but it came to a marvelous end, the bronzed exterior
yielding to its flavorfully firm flesh, a bed of anchovy-tinged lacinato kale enriched with daubs of smooth Meyer lemon aioli. Not to be outdone, a whole winter flounder boasted its own crisped skin, a pretty substantially sized fish, stretching the length of the plate atop a slurry of beluga lentils and roasted butternut squash anointed with a nutty, herbal pistachio pesto. Speaking of nuts, there were an absolute blizzard of them in the roasted brussels sprouts with chunky bacon, so much so that the uneaten remainder would've amounted to a legitimate bar snack. I'm not sure, either, what they were doing in there to begin
with, but they neither detracted substantially nor enhanced the sprouts, easily extricable as they were. Eaten with a fork, they were sort of hard to impale, anyways, so the amount that made it into alternating bites was enough. The dish would probably be better off without them, for a worthy, bacony roast of sprouts they were.
Capping things off, I wish I would've gone for our charming and attentive bartender's (who doubled as our waiter, eating at the bar as we were) recommendation of the chocolate and banana cream pie, but not being so much of a chocolate person, I went for the the apple & cranberry crisp. It was good, without too much cranberry, and the perfect proportion of nutty almond crumble atop, but it wouldn't win many awards. Maybe the island coconut lime bread pudding, with minted pineapple and rum creme anglaise to shake off the winter blues? In all other respects, The Clam certainly makes strides to do just that. The amicable service, the cozy environs, and the substantially nourishing fare all come together kind of like a big hug. Which isn't something you'd necessarily expect from a Clam, but Price's food goes a good stride beyond expectations.
420 hudson street ny, ny 10014 212.242.7420 f. 212.242.8420