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Beauty & Essex

The other night, my cousin Blair and I were invited to Upstairs at Beauty & Essex. Beauty & Essex is an absolutely fabulous NYC restaurant and hotspot in the Lower East Side. I’ve eaten dinner there before and absolutely LOVED the food, so I couldn’t wait to go back!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex has a sneaky secret entrance. First, you walk into a pawn shop. I’m unclear if this is actually a functioning pawn shop, I’ll have to bring some jewelry next time and let you know!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Then, just when you think you’ve gone to the wrong place, the bouncer on the left opens the door and lets you into Beauty & Essex.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

You’re clearly not in a pawn shop anymore!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Every Monday night from 8pm-midnight, Beauty & Essex hosts Upstairs… you guessed it, upstairs.

Upstairs is a LGBT soirée that offers guests the chance to relax with friends while sipping specialty cocktails and nibbling on delicious food. There were a ton of great people there, including several celebrities!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Blair and I were shown to our table and immediately ordered drinks. He chose his standard tequila soda, and I asked the waitress to surprise me with a cocktail. I normally think cocktails taste much too strong, so I was expecting to have to power through it. However, the waitress shocked me by bringing the best cocktail I’ve ever had!

It’s called Beauty Elixir and has Oxley gin, cucumber, strawberry and sparkling rosé. I felt prettier already!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Patrick, our host and the man who will now be known as my favorite person in the whole wide world, wanted to make sure Blair and I were able to try the restaurant’s favorite dishes. So he sent over plate after plate after plate. Did I mention he’s my favorite person?

We started with the Tuna Poke Wonton Tacos with micro cilantro, radish and wasabi kewpie. It was one of my favorites of the night!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Another favorite of mine is the Tomato Tartare. It has a delicious sunny side up quail egg and is served on a parmesan crostini. You MUST order it!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

We were also served the Lobster Tacos- amazing! This dish has beer-battered Maine lobster (my favorite!), red cabbage slaw and poblano crema.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

We were also served the Roasted Bone Marrow.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

You know how I feel about bone marrow, but Blair had never tried it before. This was his face when I told him he couldn’t have any fries until he tried the marrow.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

But he let me assemble a taste.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

And he tried it like a champ.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

As a reward: the french fries! The Salt & Vinegar Fries have the perfect amount of vinegar, and are perfectly crispy! They’re just… perfect.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

We also really liked the Oven Braised Chicken Meatballs. It is served with sheeps milk ricotta, wild mushrooms and the best ingredient ever: truffle!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Another item that you absolutely have to order is the Grilled Cheese, Smoked Bacon & Tomato Soup Dumplings. It’s basically bite-sized grilled cheese and tomato soup. Oh my gosh, I could eat this for every meal! It’s unreal!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Just when we thought we couldn’t eat any more, we were served two more delicious dishes.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

The first is the New York Pretzel which has pretzel bread covered in shaved NY strip, mustard aioli and crispy shallots.

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Our final dish was the Chile Relleno Empanadas. They were good, and made me wish I wasn’t already so full!

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Beauty & Essex - New York City dining - Wanderlust in the City

Patrick made the perfect selections, and Blair and I were happy with every dish we tried! I cannot recommend Beauty & Essex enough!

At the end of the night, my brother called to say hi. We told him we couldn’t talk because we were out. His response: “you guys know it’s Monday night, right?!”

Oh we know. Monday night at Beauty & Essex!

~A

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