Michelin-rated restaurants, if personified, remind me a bit of family. All restaurants in the “3 Star Michelin Family” have slightly different “personalities,” so to speak. You have the glamorous and impeccably put-together aunt (Daniel in NYC), the humble and wise grandfather (Le Bernardin in NYC), and the super-cool, at times advant- garde cousin who probably curates at the MoMA (Alinea).
“It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.” – Paulo Coelho
It was a year ago when I discovered I was going to be one lucky lady and dining companion at Alinea. Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I would be able to experience the work of Grant Achatz, one of the pioneers of molecular gastronomy.
I’ll find an excuse to celebrate anything. So when I was accepted to a graduate school AND received a significant scholarship, it was only my natural inclination to apply those savings in education to more important things, say,going out and eating. Which is why I found myself at Gramercy Tavern.
My Bucket List is probably a reflection of my Type A, perfectionist personality. Although I have scratched riding in a Ferrari off the list, I still have an onslaught of other important items, such as living in Spain, having my bachelorette party during Oktoberfest in Munich, skydiving, and eating at Le Bernardin.
The 5 to Try and Bucket List is one item shorter now because I had the honor (yes, it really is an honor) and pleasure of dining at Le Bernardin this past week. Deep down on the inside, I was hoping that Eric Ripert (swoon!) would be on location, but this just means that I am going to add “Meet Eric Ripert at Le Bernardin” onto my Bucket List.
Special occasions call for special dinners. As my good friend and dining companion, Sarah, can attest to, the reason for dining and celebrating at wd-50 was “I Survived 2010.” Seriously. (If only you knew.)
In order to celebrate such an incredible feat, Sarah and I decided to order the nine course tasting menu. Because it was a “work night,” we did not do wine pairings, but I ordered a glass of Albarino.
It could be that I’ve been to a few restaurants specializing in molecular gastronomy (taking field trips to Chicago for the sake of research), it could be that I’m spoiled, but the “mad scientist” element was missing. What makes Alinea and Moto so much fun are that there are lots of little unexpected surprises and the waiters will play along. The service was outstanding, the tastings were thoughtfully prepared, but there were no theatrics at wd-50. Continue reading
Albeit not the be all, end all, many people swear by the Michelin Guide. Yes, the tire company. There is definitely a method to their madness. You can even catch a rare glimpse of their famously anonymous process. 2011 has a few changes, including the destarring of Insieme, new 2 star addition for The Brooklyn at Kitchen Fare (highly recommended), the destarring from 2 to 1 star of Del Posto, and the 2 to 3 star promotion of Daniel (well deserved). Word has it that Michelin Guide’s Director, Jean-Luc Naret, is stepping down soon but one can only hope that his departure will be a seamless process. Continue reading