Weekend in the Big Apple

At long last…here are the foodos from the trip mom and I took to NYC last weekend.

I’d planned for a light lunch at Kyotofu with Tiff L. and Mom. Apparently Kyotofu was hosting a baby shower for the afternoon…so we walked a few blocks to a small cafe they recommended–Cafe Forant.

My order:

img_3076Chicken pita with baby spinach, bacon and fontina

Tiff’s order:

img_3078

Ham & Camembert Sandwich

Mom’s order:

img_3079 Shrimp and Asparagus Crepe in garlic cream

Lunch turned into brunch. All in all the food was good, however my pita was unexpectedly thick and chicken expectedly dry but hey, that’s what I get for ordering chicken at a restaurant, right? For a special, it wasn’t so special but I’d go back again if I lived in the Hell’s Kitchen area. After all, I do enjoy supporting small mom & pop eateries.

After brunch, Mom and I met up with Deneen for some boutique shopping. While paying for Phoebe’s new harness in a dog shop in Chelsea, we chatted it up with the shop lady. She recommended we hit up the Lower East Side. Perfect–our dinner reservations were in that area anyway. That was my 2nd mistake after ordering chicken. Had I stopped to realize that this lady was “too helpful” to the extent that her rambling resulted in talking in circles and confusing us Bostonians (+1 Long Islander), I could’ve prevented our maladies that ensued. We took a cab to the intersection of Essex and Houston as she instructed. Her ambiguous, free-spirited “just go with it after that” direction proved as misleading as it was vague. We’d expected steets lined with boutiques, like Newbury St. in Boston, however the boutiques were harder to come by. Thankfully we used our wits (and D’s Blackberry) and eventually found a few stores, although not the cornucopia of shops as promised.

A few purchases later our sorrows were mollified, though not forgotten. Hakuna matata. We had somehow timed our purchases perfectly so that we escaped the cold just long enough to preface dinner. How exciting! Here are the foodos of our delicious (3 hour) 12 course tasting at WD-50:

The best thing to happen since sliced bread:

img_3083

Sesame Crisps

*We ate these all night long. Beats warm Legal Seafoods’ or Bertucci’s rolls–they’re that good!

Kickin’ it off on the right toe:

img_30862Peekytoe crab, blue corn, daikon, maple syrup

The most creative dish:

img_3087Everything bagel, smoked salmon threads, crispy cream cheese

*The bagel was made of ice cream–surprise!

img_3091Foie gras, passionfruit, chinese celery

*The foie gras was filled with passionfruit–surprise! (D didn’t like that surprise…)

img_3092Scallops, tendon, endive, parsley, hazelnut oil

Most flavor with the least amount of substance:

img_3093Truffled carbonara

*We scraped from east to west for a forkful of breakfast in a bite.

Most surprisingly successful flavor combination:

img_3094Lobster legs, brussels sprouts, lily bulb, banana-kimchee

*Who woulda thought banana and kimchee? Whylie, why you so wily?

Ehhh, what’s up doc?

img_3096Rabbit, wild rice polenta, cassis, kale, black olive

*The rabbit sausage was bland. The polenta contributed little to the medley. The hardened cassis and salty kale were the best parts.

Too sweet, not enough salty:

img_3097Squab, butternut noodles, cream soda, carob

*The sweetness of the cream soda gel overpowered the savory, salty sauce beneath the squab.

Better together:

img_3100Ricotta, capers, frozen honey, caper foam

*United we stand [sweet, salty, herby]; Divided we fail [too sweet, too salty, too herby].

Nuttiest and yummiest:

img_3102Hazelnut tart, coconut, chocolate, chicory

*By far my favorite–perhaps because I’m nuts for hazelnut! And I couldn’t resist the chicory foam…mmm

Foaming at the mouth:

img_3105Caramelized brioche, gala apple, sage, brown butter

*Sage foam=ingenious

As if we weren’t full enough:

img_3108

Cocoa packets, pear-pistachio cake, chocolate shortbread, milk ice cream.

*Surprisingly, my favorite one contained no chocolate at all!

img_3111An inside look at the cocoa packet.

We got to meet Wylie Dufresne and stand in his spacious kitchen. I witnessed the torching of the tendon atop the scallop (course 4). Wylie is as awkward as he is wily. He was just as I saw him on Top Chef–a reserved, pensieve egg aficionado. When I asked him for his 2 cents on pursuing a culinary career, he came up short of change with an ambiguous response. We can’t all be social butterflies. His food speaks for his creativity. I’ll leave it at that.

Mom and I had lunch the next day at ‘inoteca. Rule of thumb: don’t dine at empty restaurants. This place was packed–and for good reason.

img_3112

Pesto Bruschetteimg_3114

Truffle Egg Toast with Botarga

The hidden egg oozed out when I cut this in half–just like the passionfruit in the foie gras at WD-50.

img_3115Pulled pork with fried egg and arugula salad

(can’t recall the italian name so this will have to suffice)

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