NECTAR brings NYC feel to Main Line


Ethan Surocvik

The nice spice offsets the price.

Located right outside of downtown Devon, NECTAR has always been one of my favorite restaurants. The level of quality and service they offer has always impressed me, and it’s pretty much the closest you’ll get to a “high society NYC spot” on the Main Line.

The food is always spectacular, and little touches like complimentary valet parking make the experience one to remember. While the prices may be a bit much, this is the perfect place for a date or a special occasion. NECTAR’s mission statement is a quote by the Dalai Lama, “Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon,” and I think they deliver on that in every respect.

The Vibe:

NECTAR basically feels like a refined NYC spot (very similar to the celebrity cult favorite Nobu), but on the Main Line. You know this place is going to be a treat when you first pull into the parking lot and are greeted by the always friendly valet staff. If you like cars, their parking lot always seems to be loaded with dozens of Audis, Range Rovers, Benz’s with a few Bentleys and Ferrari’s sprinkled in the mix.

The special feeling doesn’t disappear once you enter, as the high ceilings and imposing buddha artwork seem to enhance the vibe. Another notable aspect is the music they play, as it always has a trendy club vibe. On one visit, my friend Will West ’19 said, “This is like Malvern Dance music.”

No matter what area you sit in, you feel pampered. The outdoor seating is especially nice on a summer night. Overall, I always love the atmosphere at NECTAR, and it’s one of the main parts that keeps me coming back.

The Food:

The best part about NECTAR is the food. They have an Asian fusion cuisine with inspiration from traditional French cuisine, and that odd blend works perfectly. While the portions can seem a bit small, the flavor of pretty much never disappoints.

Starting with sushi, I had the Avocado roll, Spicy Crunchy Tuna roll and Seared Tuna roll. The sushi menu offers all of the typical sushi favorites, but where it gets interesting is the specialty roll section. The Seared Tuna roll is from that menu, and the blend of sesame seed coated tuna, and sweet eel sauce is delectable. Another starter that you have to try is the Pork Dumplings. They use a special shiitake sauce that gives them a very subtle salty taste.

Moving on to entrees, I shared the Nectar Lo Mein, Chicken Pad Thai and Chinese Sausage Fried Rice with three people. The Chinese Sausage Rice was very different from a typical fried rice, with little bits of bacon mixed into the rice that made it so savory. The Chicken Pad Thai was super salty and savory, and I loved every bite of it. The Nectar Lo Mein was very good, but didn’t really offer anything special compared to a typical Lo Mein dish.

For dessert we enjoyed the Warm Cinnamon Waffle and the Mini Doughnuts. The Waffle had a Pan-Asian sweet sauce on it, and is truly one of the most memorable desserts I can remember. This is worth the trip alone. The Mini Doughnuts are a NECTAR take on Dunkin Donuts munchkins, with delectable sauces on the side. These are super fun, and are great without the side sauces.

Overall, everything I have tried here has been amazing and has never let me down.

In Closing:

The only complaint I have about NECTAR is the price. As you might have guessed from my opening paragraph, this place is not a bargain in any respect. A group of three people can expect to spend around $200 on one meal here. For most people, that is outrageous and seems very overpriced.

But there’s something special here, a vibe that promises to give you a memorable experience, and food that matches the price. While NECTAR may seem like a pretentious place only for wealthy foodies, I find it to be worth every cent. This is truly the best place to have any special occasion, as NECTAR’s culinary panache fades into the background as you and your friends enjoy a night out.

Sometimes you really do get what you pay for.