I stopped by J Press and was shooting the crap with David Wilder when he mentioned Dutch Herring Week at the Oyster Bar in Grand Central. I grabbed my order from David and made a bee line for Grand Central. And what a lunch it was.
Dutch Herring is offered only one week a year in NYC and it's not bad. The Dutch Gin served iced cold in a cordial glass helps give it that certain flavor I find in Scandinavian foods. Maybe it's connecting with my Norwegian genes but it's a taste I'm crazy about. Fish and Gin. Simple, clean and true. Kinda like licking pine sap in the winter.
You only get two filets of herring so you're gonna need something else. I went with the oysters. Half a dozen large blue points and half a dozen small. I'm comfortable with slurping down normal sized oysters but the large ones are a challenge. In fact, the first one didn't make it and fell onto my plate of ice. It was noticed as well. Never a good thing in an Oyster Bar.
I finished up the plate of oysters and sat for a while. I've always enjoyed the Oyster Bar. The sounds and the ceiling. The tourists and the business men. The old men in their poplin and seersucker suits. It's so New York. Where else in this country do you see a week devoted to Herring?