By Jon Haggins
Photos: Maybelle Webster
Philippe Restaurant is a beautiful establishment located on the eastside of Manhattan. The restaurant offers the total essence of a fine Chinese cuisine dining experience.
A lovely small lounge area sits at the entrance, leading to a handsome, cozy bar that’s lined with a variety of alcoholic beverages. The main dining room is divided into two sections and it’s accented with a skylight and a large floral arrangement in the center of the room. The walls are lined with banquets for an intimate dining experience. The lower level has two private wine cellars for special occasions. One room has a large selection of red wines in a rack, and the second room has refrigerated white wines. Each room can accommodate between 20 to 25 people for a sit down event.
Philippe Chow, the owner and chef offers traditional Beijing-style cuisine with a contemporary and upscale spin. Philippe’s signature dishes are served in generous portions family-style to provide their guests the opportunity to enjoy a lively and social dining experience. The result is a presentation of complex flavors with a freshness, vitality and modern flair to traditional Chinese cuisine.
Philippe Restaurant has remained a hotspot since it opened in 2005, attracting a steady stream of A-list-celebrities including, Rihanna, Kobe Bryant, Beyonce, Lady Gaga and Oprah. Philippe has received top culinary accolades including, “Best Peking Duck” from the NY Observer and “Best in Chinese” by Zagat.
Philippe offers a variety of dishes from seafood, meat and poultry. The restaurant presents a Chef’s tasting menu with 4 courses served family style with a variety of appetizers. The entré includes one Peking duck and dessert for $85.00
My guest and I began our meal with a lettuce wrap appetizer filled with chicken- the minced chicken and vegetables were combined with hoisin sauce and then wrapped in an iceberg lettuce leaf ($18). I was surprised that the chef didn’t use Romaine lettuce. It was a very light and easy to prepare dish. The hoisin sauce offered a smokey delicately sweet flavor.
Our special dish of the evening was Peking duck for 2 ($75. Mirjona our waiter presented the entire duck and then sliced it our table. The presentation was amazing and was accompanied with a dish of thin home made pancakes and a bowl of hoisin sauce; a dark, rich, paste-like sauce with a spicy-sweet flavor and reddish brown color. It’s normally made from fermented soybeans, vinegar, garlic, sugar, and Chinese spices. The duck melted in our mouths. The duck dish was accompanied by two side dishes of shrimp fried rice ($14). It was a very generous portion and a terrific combination that could be considered a main dish. The steamed mixed vegetable dish was a combination of bean sprouts, carrots, bamboo, bok choy and sugar snap peas ($12). Our meal was accompanied with several glasses of Meiomi Pinot Noir California ($20 a glass)
To top off the evening we ordered Key lime Pie, which was light and creamy with a graham cracker crust ($15), and a dark chocolate layer cake topped with raspberry sauce ($15).
We thoroughly enjoyed our dining experience at Philippe restaurant. The modern interpretation of traditional Beijing cuisine was a delightful surprise.
Philippe by Philippe Chow
33 East 60th Street
New York City 10065