BEST RESTAURANT FOR ROMANCE - 2002
Loring Kitchen & Bar
What is it finally going to take for you to get some of that sweet, sweet loving? A carriage ride around the park? Rose petals on the sheets? Boarding school for the progeny? A bodysuit made of theatrical rubber instantly transforming you into Cameron Diaz or LL Cool J? We can't help you there, but if you reserve a table at the Loring, well, let's just say that would be a step in the right direction. The artfully deconstructed room looks like a stage set for bodice-ripping ballerinas, the lighting is superb, there's usually a saxophonist wailing from somewhere, the view of the park is wind-tossed in winter, bucolic in summer...and chef Patrick Atanalian's food is excellent. And there's something for every wallet, from the bar-favorite pizzas (about $10) to Atanalian's remarkable bouillabaisse dinner. That bouillabaisse deal isn't a mere fish stew, by the way. It's a three-course extravaganza for two that requires 48 hours' notice, costs $70, and will take your date's breath away: You begin with a tureen of musty rockfish soup and a vast heap of toast points and garlicky rouille, move on to a groaning platter of roast fish and shellfish (remember, both garlic and shellfish are aphrodisiacs), and finish with a pair of dessert soufflés. Try not to put your foot in your mouth. If you go to bed lonely, well, sorry, we tried.