As much as I wanted to hate a restaurant that capitalises three letters of its title and italicises the other four, I couldn't hate TriBeCa. The place contradicts itself at every turn, and the whole dining experience was full of pleasant surprises.
Firstly, because of the finicky name I had the place pegged as a bit of a snob, but despite the flashy title, I was surprised to find that TriBeCa has a relaxed and friendly feel.
My second surprise was the decor. The exterior is beautiful, being located in Parnell's Foundation Building. The dining room, however, looks like something that your nana might wear to church. Tatty rugs, dreary curtains and blah artwork. But don't let it get to you, the meal is well worth sitting in granny paradise.
Being a Parnell veteran, you might expect traditional fine dining from TriBeCa. How you are wrong, friend. The chef loves to mix up his dishes, always opting for seasonal produce and twisting the menu to accommodate the best quality ingredients on hand.
For starters, the ostrich ($26) and beetreet spazle ($23) (good luck pronouncing that one) were interesting and delicious, but the overall winner was the artichoke ($23). It was accompanied by pea puree, sweet corn, shallots, carrot and garlic. It was so good I wanted to order it again as my main.
We then had the market fish and the eye fillet ($42), both of which were rich and filling. The wining main was the prawn tortellini ($40), with scampi, chorizo, more pea puree, more shallots, more artichoke and pepper (I know you are thinking that I liked the prawns best because the dish is basically the same as the artichoke entree. And you are right).
The thing is, I really wanted to dislike TriBeCa. I really did. But with the restaurant being one big oxymoron, my dining experience was refreshingly unique and the food was great.