Each year to celebrate my boyfriend’s birthday I take him to a steak house. This year I decided to change course and take him to one of my favorite restaurants in Manhattan-The Stanton Social. I have eaten here numerous times with groups of friends and for business dinners and it has always been an amazing experience. Located at 99 Stanton Street on the Lower East Side this restaurant and lounge offers great cocktails, a solid wine selection, and the most delicious small plates to share. We got there very early before our reservation so we could visit the bar and have my favorite cocktail Strawberry Fields. It’s a refreshing mix of Grey Goose Citron, strawberries, lemon syrup, topped with a riesling floater. Andrzej ordered the powerful blood orange-jalapeno margarita. Once we were seated I let the birthday man choose our wine. His selection was Bodega Navarra Correas Coleccion Privada Malbec 2010 from Mendoza, Argentina. We couldn’t have been more pleased with this well balanced, velvety red. It was very dark purple in the glass and had an excellent blend of flavors including plum, blackberry, vanilla. It exhibited the right amount of spiciness and the tannins were not overpowering. I love to recommend Malbec as it is a red wine that can be paired with almost anything. Bodega Navarra Correas Malbec 2010 was reasonably priced at under $50 for the bottle and was also available by the glass.
For our dishes I chose my three favorites that keep me coming back to The Stanton Social and I let the newbie choose two that he would like to try. My top picks are the french onion soup dumplings, potato & goat cheese pierogies, and grilled apple & brie quesadilla. His selections were the wild mushroom & ricotta ravioli and Thai spiced baby back ribs. All were excellent and I was very pleased with the baby back ribs which I hadn’t previously tasted. Even though we were very satisfied and on our way to being stuffed you must leave room for dessert. My choice is always the warm donuts served with chocolate, caramel, and raspberry dipping sauces. The birthday dinner was a resounding success and the wine choice was beyond our expectations. The Stanton Social continues to be a hot spot. This is due to the outstanding food, cool atmosphere, and executive chef Chris Santos has been a guest judge on the addicting Food Network competition show Chopped. My advice is to make a reservation well in advance. It can be difficult to get into during peak hours especially if you are going with a group but it is so worth it!