Hi there! It’s Thursday night which means tomorrow is quite possibly the best day of all.. Friday! Is anyone else as excited as me? I’m sure I am not alone 😉 Last night, three of my friends and I met up for dinner at a restaurant called ilili. The next week or two is ‘Restaurant Week’ here in NYC where many restaurants participate in providing three course meals for very reasonable prices. We decided to take advantage of this opportunity and ilili was the perfect place to go!
As soon as I walked into ilili I loved the decor – understated, sleek, and clean.
My friend Krystyna and I were the first to arrive so we decided to take advantage of the happy hour cocktail menu. I ordered the St. Germain Cocktail which consisted of Cava and Elderflower Liquer and Krystyna ordered a glass of rose sangria. I can’t speak for Krystyna, but my cocktail was crisp and delicious.
Shortly after sipping on our drinks, Danielle and Brittany arrived and it was time to be seated! The area in which we ate was also really beautiful:
ilili is a restaurant with Mediterranean cuisine, and I absolutely love Mediterranean food. Give me some hummus and pita chips and I’m a happy camper. The way that the Restaurant Week menu was set up was so that each person is able to pick two starters, one main entree, and then finish the meal with a chocolatey dessert. Our waitress recommended that being there was four of us, we should each pick two different starters so we could all share. It was a great idea and we were all able to try so many different dishes; hummus, Fattoush (Lebanese Garden Salad), Mouhamara (a spread of walnuts, sundried peppers, and pomegranate), falafel, and Moussaka (eggplant, tomato, garlic, onion, olive oil). All of this came with pita bread for dipping.
This is what one of my plates looked like:
Every single thing was so delicious. I’m not sure what I liked more–the Moussaka or the Falafel–but honestly, everything was so flavorful and all of the dishes complimented eachother very nicely. I could have just had my cocktail and the starters and been totally fine.
But of course we had to have our main course! Since the waitress told me that ilili is known for it’s lamb, I decided to go out on a bit of a limb and go for it! And I’m so glad I did. Generally I don’t eat lamb or red meat, but it was restaurant week and I thought, ‘why not?’. The lamb was served with orange segments, a garlic whipped mousse, and lettuce cups so that the lamb could be made into lettuce wraps:
HOLY CRAP. This dish was insanely delicious. All of the flavors were paired perfectly and the lamb couldn’t have been cooked any better.
And finally? Dessert. Dessert came in the form of a mini chocolate cake with a home made whipped cream and a home made chocolate sauce.
I took a bite or two of my dessert, but to be honest, I didn’t like it so much. It cured a little sweet tooth craving, but the starters and entree really kicked this dessert’s booty.
It’s safe to say that my friends and I left super full and with a fond love for ilili. I already can’t wait to go back!
Question of the Night: What’s your favorite type of cuisine? Where’s the last place you ate out for dinner?