Mon-Tue, 11:45am-2:30pm and 5pm-9pm; Wed-Sat, 11:45am-2:30pm and 5pm-11pm; Sun, 5pm-9pm
A, C, E at 42nd St.-Port Authority Bus Terminal; N, R, W at 49th St.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Named after the landmark ballet performed by the Ballet Russe, FireBird Russian Restaurant captivates well-to-do tourists and theatergoers with its opulent décor and luxe czarist fare. Situated on Restaurant Row, FireBird recreates the splendors of a Romanov-era St. Petersburg mansion. Every inch of the three-floor eatery is bedecked with period antiques, samovars, books, gilded china, crystal, dramatic paintings, and photographs of nobles in full regalia. If you want to act aristocratic, order a flute of the restaurant's honey-infused vodka and splurge on some caviar. Herring, as an appetizer, is cured on-premise and served in petite slices with a dollop of sour cream. The marinade is mild, the result somewhat flat. Similarly, the Ukrainian-style borscht entrée, which features a meaty slab of brisket and julienned beets, underwhelms. Chicken Kiev, however, is monarch-worthy: The golden-fried orb, upon incision, releases a rivulet of herbaceous, molten butter. For dessert, bananas Foster, while all-American, is the way to go. It's prepared tableside and flambéed with great flair. Ardent Russophiles may trek out to Brooklyn for more affordable, tastier Russian fare, but few establishments will impress your old aunt visiting from Milwaukee more than FireBird.Prix-Fixe Menu
The three-course meal is served daily from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., $44.95
Chicken Kiev, $34; bananas Foster, $18