Must-See Upper West Side
by Jonathan Zeller, 01/01/2010
Courtesy, Ocean Grill
384 Columbus Ave., 212-579-2300
Early on Sunday afternoons in Ocean Grill's nautically themed dining room, guests enjoy eggs Benedict with champagne or perhaps a screwdriver for brunch as they gaze through the porthole windows. Yet this bustling eatery also evokes New England with a raw-bar menu as long as the eastern seaboard, mouthwatering lobster bisque and all kinds of fish. The eatery does the classics well—part of the menu is dedicated to "simply grilled" fish marinated with extra-virgin olive oil, lemon, garlic and capers and your choice of sauce—but is also willing to venture into uncharted waters, as it serves up horseradish-crusted Scottish salmon with goat cheese gnocchi, forest mushrooms and butternut squash. The staff, meanwhile, is famously attentive and friendly. And deal-seekers will be pleased with the sunset menu and lunch prix-fixe prices. All aboard!