I had my first meal at Nosh three nights after their official grand opening and was bracing myself for what is so often the experience that one has when dining at a newly minted restaurant. Slow service, glitches in the menu, food that isn’t prepared as one would hope... Much to our delight, my mother, Duffy, and I were all astounded by the fact that Nosh managed to deliver all that one would hope when dining out at a more seasoned and established eatery. Delicious food, fantastic atmosphere, and impeccable service!
The first thing that one notices when entering Nosh is the stunning design and atmosphere. The restaurant materialized out of what was, until recently, vacant space long since abandoned. Over the course of the past few months, a fun, whimsical, chic, and contemporary dining room and bar have materialized. The space reminds me of something that you would find in Tribeca - open lofted ceilings, visible industrial duct work, exposed brick, modernist lighting and fixtures, a remarkably welcoming concrete floor, plush banquettes, patina-ed tabletops…
My only small criticism would be that the background music is a bit too loud. When you have 200+ Rochesterians enjoying dinner, drinks, and conversation, there is simply no need to pump up the volume and make it more difficult to be heard above the din. Music volume aside, Nosh has already begun to evolve into a fun, entertaining place to dine. It's an amalgam of the “who's-who” of local personalities – a large dining room filled with dozens of friends and acquaintances, all of whom you’re thrilled to run into!
Shockingly, the owners of Nosh have no previous experience working in, let alone, managing or owning a restaurant. Kudos to them for having the managerial ability and foresight to assemble such a strong team! A group of local culinary veterans culled from Grappa and the recently defunct Mario's have joined forces to create what will likely continue to strengthen as a powerhouse lineup. If this team is capable of firing on all cylinders so quickly after first coming together, one can only assume and imagine that Nosh will be around for a long time to come!
Overall, I continue to be exceedingly impressed by the quality of the food at Nosh. The first night that I was there last month, the Executive Chef, Joe Zaolnierowski, came out and introduced himself – an act that adds an air of sophistication to any good restaurant. Turns out that prior to his arrival at Nosh, Joe was a chef at Mario's on Monroe Avenue. I’m so happy to see that his talents are being utilized in a more forward thinking kitchen! The food at Nosh is innovative, fresh, and unlike a lot of the traditional fare that is offered up in restaurants locally.
Appetizers – My favorite appetizer to start with at Nosh is their wood fired pizza. Their oven rises to 900 degrees, allowing for the pizza to cook for just a few moments so that it miraculously comes out both soft and chewy, yet solid enough to hold. I’ve never really been one to pay much attention to pizza crust, or to the age old debate of New York versus Chicago style. However, I do know that there is nothing worse than a pizza that cannot withstand the weight of its toppings – especially when they end up on your lap. The Roasted Root pizza with golden beet pesto at Nosh is incredibly flavorful and cooked to perfection! Another great suggestion for a starter or light entrée would be their South Wedge salad or South of Bar Harbor salad. Both are fresh and delicious!
Entrees - If I had one small criticism to make of the menu at Nosh, it would have to do with the entrees. I've had the Cioppino on several occasions and have loved it each and every time. However, most of the other offerings are either too rich or too heavy for me to even consider ordering. A lighter entree option or vegetarian option would be my only recommendation. Otherwise, I can safely say that their salads, pizza, and Cioppino have been fantastic!
In short, if you’re looking for a great restaurant in which to dine, call and make a reservation at Nosh… You’ll love it!