The New Haymaker
Visiting Hudson Valley and thinking of Haymaker as a birthday dinner destination. Anyone been since Bennett Chinn took over? Is it all that?
Also, if, as other posters have said, he worked with Keller and French Laundry and Per Se, wonder why that isn't said in his bio on the restaurant website?
i posted on it a while back, and i think a couple others as well. i'd say the would has a nicer setup (because of their location and food selections), and i've been told the italian place in wappingers is great as well.
i like haymaker, have gone a couple times, will go back, and benett, carolyn and staff are wonderful.
Go by what it says on the website, any other info, including anything I might have said, may have been based on hearsay.
haymaker got a lukewarm review in the pojo recently. i was surprised, because they've given much better reviews to places i consider inferior (i've been there twice and recommend it)
going back again this saturday, my wife wanted to try it out so we made reservations. and i went to look at their old menus (including valentine's day, '06). i saw two interesting things on that specal menu on a quick look:
oysters and pearls and butter poached lobster (with orzo)
i have no problem with that; for those well versed in cookbooks and chefs, you'll understand why i found it interesting. and why i posted on a thread if bennett worked at the laundry or per se...
we did end up going there and the food was quite good, athough not spectacular. Bennett was not behind the stoves that day BTW. A bit surprised by the location and decor, kind of feels more like a brewpub and its in a mall, which would be fine for an average night but not really perfect for a birthday. But its the food that counts most of all and it was solid.
my wife and i went this past saturday.
we had a mushroom strudle appetizer. very good - i'm not a big fan of mushrooms, these were diced small, a flaky pastry around it, with a berry topping. very good.
their winter menu was 2 days old, so no specials.
my wife had a chap che with chicken - basically, glass noodles, a variety of veggies, and chicken. very flavorful.
i had a mahi mahi (had a lemon flavored sauce) with rice, fried tempura vegetables with ponzi sauce. it was ok, i wouldn't recommend it again,.
dessert - she had a creme brulee she liked. i had a sorbet combination (one flute with boysenberry, one with champagne and one with a cabernet? or some other C wine-flavored sorbet) that was wonderful. my wife loved it as well.
the focaccia brought out with the meal really hit the mark; one ball of regular butter, one of tomato/basil butter that impressed.
so, overall, she was quite happy. i'll avoid the mahi mahi, but it stays on my list of places i enjoy going to.
Bennett Chinn attended classes held in Aspen by Keller, Pepin and Boulud. He never worked for Keller. Who ever mentioned that misunderstood.