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Whether you elect the three-course prix fixe menu or splurge on the eight-course tasting menu, dinner at Daniel will be impressive. Known for its upscale French cuisine with an American twist and fresh, seasonal ingredients, Daniel changes its menus with New York's seasons. While you can expect to find nightly specials and a number of regular dishes and drinks, we've rounded up our five favorites:
1. Start your meal off right with an artisanal cocktail at the Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star restaurant's bar or secluded lounge. The drink menu also changes seasonally, but we loved the signature Smokey Bandit. The spicy blend consists of Ilegal Joven mezcal, jalapeño, orange curaçao, fresh pineapple and lime juice.
2. Whichever dinner menu you choose, you're sure to get a taste of the chef's affinity for using the best and freshest seafood. It could be an appetizer like the peekytoe crab salad with cumin-carrot coulis, or an entree on the tasting menu like the mousseron mushroom and Maine lobster ravioli with pink peppercorn. Delicate Maine sea scallops, hearty Alaskan king salmon and yummy yellowfin tuna also find their way into main dishes, so if you're into seafood, Daniel is a must.
3. Vegetarians often have trouble getting the same level of experience as omnivores at even the finest restaurants — but not so at this New York restaurant. There's a special tasting menu designed just for vegetarians, and the dishes are so delicious you might choose it even if you eat meat. Appetizers like celery and fennel gazpacho and main dishes such as fennel royale with black mission figs or fricassee of wild rice with fava beans make for a scrumptious meat-free meal that doesn't sacrifice classic French taste.
4. The sinfully sweet dessert menu is divided into fruit and chocolate dishes; we encourage you to try both. Fruit treats embrace a variety of complex flavors. Go for the vanilla slow-cooked rhubarb with yogurt mousse, caramelized phyllo and acacia-honey ice cream or the Thai basil macerated mango with lime dacquoise cake and pink guava sorbet.
5. Chocoholics can sate their craving with the chocolate side of the dessert menu. Though the pastry chef switches it up often, recent menus have included a caramelized hazelnut sablé with dulce de leche cream, chocolate mousse and horchata ice cream and a caramelia chocolate mousse with brown sugar biscuit, Haitian coffee cream and ice cream made with toffee and rich muscovado brown sugar. Either one will hit your sweet spot and round out a delicious meal at the Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star restaurant.