NYC: Eleven Madison Park (Nov. 2012)
Restaurant: Eleven Madison Park
Exec Chef: Daniel Humm
Date: November 20, 2012
I’ve been wanting to try EMP’s new tasting menu for a while, ever since I heard that they were changing up their menu. It’s still somewhat similar to their previous setup, except that everything is more focused on dialogue about New York. The carrot tartare and Greensward cheese “picnic” courses were REALLY good, and I thoroughly enjoyed the meal. I also enjoyed the magic trick, though I can see why others wouldn’t—I have some friends who just want to focus on food and not have all this dialogue and “something as showy as a magic trick” get in the way of things. Oh well; I enjoyed it!
Unfortunately, the pics aren’t great because we ate here for dinner. The lighting wasn’t great :(.
I really need to go back to EMP more often. I’m kind of curious as to how many dishes they actually change. I’m guessing that some dishes are staples: the black-and-white cookie variations, the sturgeon course, the carrot tartare course, the cheese “picnic” course (though the cheese might change), that WONDERFUL egg cream, and the magic trick!
CHEDDAR AND APPLE
Savory Black and White Cookie
OYSTER (WIDOW’S HOLE)
Glazed with Wood Sorrel and Buckwheat
Snow with Beets, Goat Cheese, and Caraway
Custard with Baby Squid, Bay Scallop, and Apple
Part 1: Sabayon with Chives
Part 2: Smoked with Everything Bagel Crumble, Pickles, and Caviar
Victor: They actually have been working on this course for a few months now; I remember trying it several months before this meal. They’ve played with Arctic char instead of sturgeon, and they’ve also used spherification of lemon to make lemon “caviar” (to be served side-by-side with the actual caviar). I really enjoy this dish. There’s the anticipation you get when you see the smokey dome, and then there’s the wonder as you see the sturgeon, caviar, bagel crumble, pickles, and bread in front of you. Of course, all of the ingredients are excellent, and everything’s good, whether you want to enjoy it by itself or mix everything together!
Right: Cow’s Milk Butter from Pennsylvania
Left: Same butter, but it’s made with beef trimmings from the 140-day dry-aged ribeye
Victor: I’ve LOVED the bread at EMP since trying it for the first time a few years ago. Props to Pastry Chef Angela Pinkerton. She makes some amazing bread. It’s so buttery and crispy and flaky and filled with wonderful goodness. This is probably my favorite bread of any restaurant I’ve tried. This, along with the egg cream, are two of the things I look forward to the most whenever I eat here!
SALSIFY (PINE ISLAND)
Roasted with Bulgar Wheat, Mangalitsa Ham, and Hazelnuts
Tartare with Rye Bread and Condiments
Victor: The cook used a meat grinder to prepare the carrot like a meat tartare.
Instructions: Mix all the ingredients with the tartare and shave it over the multigrain bread!
Victor: I experienced a bunch of different flavors and textures while eating the mixed tartare, and it was really enjoyable to eat something so playful and creative. (It was tartare! From carrots! Whooooo!)
Poached with Leeks, Black Onion, and Shellfish Bisque
Roasted with Sesame, Parsnip, and Dijon
BEEF (140-DAY DRY-AGED)
Part 1: Broth
Part 2 (Center): Ribeye Braised with Mushrooms, Amaranth, and Dandelion Greens
Part 3 (Top Right): Braised Oxtail with Potato
Pretzel, Mustard, and Grapes
Victor: They brought out a picnic basket for us and told us to open it.
Victor: Inside were some silverware, grapes, pretzel bread, a box holding cheese, and a container with mustard.
MALT (EGG CREAM)
Egg Cream with Vanilla and Seltzer
Victor: They’ve had different variations of this egg cream for a few years now; the two common flavors have been malt and orange. And both are DELICIOUS. I love love love the egg cream here, and it’s seriously one of the things I look forward to the most when I eat here.
Poached with Honey and Acorn
Sheep’s Milk Cheesecake and Fennel
CHOCOLATE (MAGIC CARD TRICK)
Victor: I forgot what they did for the magic trick :(. I’ll try to record a video the next time I eat here—hopefully for lunch so that there’s better lighting haha. (I am happy I got hazelnut, though. I do remember the chocolate being really, really good…)
Chocolate-Covered with Sea Salt