I heard of One North, but I was not expecting much — maybe a nice, small, and modern Mediterranean joint. I had never passed it or seen it, despite driving around this area constantly. However, upon arrival, I was pleasantly surprised and the place immediately exceeded my expectations.
One North is tucked away in a closed space off Old Jericho Turnpike. It seriously looks as if the restaurant is hiding away between a number of buildings and properties. The parking lot is pleasantly large, and has valet. When you arrive, you feel as though you are right at home — quite literally, since the restaurant looks like a house. The exterior color is pleasant at a distance with large white columns. There is an outdoor seating area at the front patio for anyone who wants to wait around or take a smoke break. I couldn’t help but notice the Rolls Royce that modeled its parking spot right next to the restaurant.
Still, I wasn’t expecting much when I entered. Usually restaurants that look like houses end up having a tacky, stuffy, and dark interior. But, this was not even remotely the case with One North. Upon entry, I was immediately in awe at the high ceilings, beautiful and elaborate decor, and multi-dimensional design. There is so much to see inside. At first, it almost seems as though you are entering a nice hotel resort. There is a huge bar area with lots of standing room, which is a place where people simply socialize, party, and talk. There are tons of tables, including a number of tables on their outdoor patio in the back. The restaurant’s back wall is open such that the restaurant blends into the outdoor patio. The patio has a number of nice touches, such as a fire pit and large lamps (potentially heating lamps). Their wine cellar design is also very tasteful, and the music was pleasantly fitting with a chic feel. There is also an open kitchen area, where people can actually sit at. Overall, the design was impressive, especially in comparison to many restaurants I have seen on Long Island. People were dressed in varying attire — from suits and dresses to regular T-shirts and jeans. Though, the dressier look was by far the majority rule.
As if the interior wasn’t already something to behold, the menu is the next overwhelming endeavor. First of all, the regular menu choices are plentiful. The most comical experience by far was the explanation of the Specials by the waiter. They had so many specials that I felt as though I was listening to a medical school lecture. Our waiter probably spoke for a solid 5-7 minutes straight merely listing the specials they had for the evening. When I thought he was almost finished running through them all, he said “I am done going through the special appetizers. I will now share with you the special entrees for the night.” Phew.
Nonetheless, I asked him for some key recommendations on the menu, since I was definitely suffering from decisional fatigue by this point. He highly recommended the West African Salted Prawns, and he sold me on them. He said they were “one of the top sellers, healthy, delicious, one of a kind.” Therefore, I got that and a order of calamari.
I wish he had warned me that the calamari was a huge shareable portion. I suppose that is a common assumption, but then again, how was I supposed to eat that much calamari if I ordered it for myself? Fortunately, I had a number of hungry people sitting with me at this dinner who could help me through the mountain of squid. The crab cake looked very good as well, and the appetizer of Charred Spanish Octopus looked interesting as well (though, too much tentacle for my taste).
Finally, they delivered my enormous prawns. When I say enormous, I mean it. These shrimp could pose as a lobster through their sheer size. In fact, we actually ordered a lobster as well, so you could look at the pictures to compare the size difference. They gave me 2 prawns total. I really wasn’t sure what to expect as far as flavor profile, but I was very happy with this dish, to say the least. It was absolutely delicious, filling, and exceeded my expectations once more. Compared to the consistency of lobster, I liked the consistency of the prawns much more — softer and easier to eat. Overall, I would likely order the dish again, and I recommend it. Though, I agree that the eyes are a bit freaky. We also had a Seafood Pot dish, which seemed attractive and decent with a good mushroom sauce.
At this point, I was rather full, but we shared a 20 Layer Black and White Crepe Cake. I had never heard of such a cake, but it was great. Regular cake is overrated. It looked very much like a chocolate Napoleon.
Overall, I was very happy with this restaurant, and was pretty shocked that it even existed. The food was overall very good, and I had no complaints. The waiters were attentive and clearly have to study a long list of Specials in order to have the honor of repeating them all. The atmosphere is very cool — chic, tasteful, and stylish. I would recommend a visit.