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Is Per Se and EMP in one day a horrible waste?

Spiritchaser Aug 4, 2011 11:21 AM

Okay, big b-day coming up and my GF wants to make sure she does it up right for me. We've done dinner at Per Se but haven't done lunch yet so her plan is a noon lunch at Per Se and then because EMP is my (our) favorite and we are always sure to have a wonderful time there she was planning on a late dinner.

Do you think this is over kill for a single day? Is it too much to enjoy?

Thanks

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Per Se
10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

Eleven Madison Park
11 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10010

  1. ellenost Aug 4, 2011 11:30 AM

    Maybe if you have only the 5 course lunch at Per Se and the 4 course dinner at EMP you would be okay. Enjoy your special day! (BTW, that's the way I would love to spend my birthday too).

    3 Replies
    1. re: ellenost
      Spiritchaser Aug 4, 2011 11:44 AM

      Thanks for the b-day wish. Yeah, eat, recup, eat some more, sleep...that's a birthday!

      1. re: Spiritchaser
        k
        kathryn Aug 4, 2011 12:31 PM

        You could also go for a long run between meals! Sounds like a great day.

        1. re: kathryn
          Spiritchaser Aug 5, 2011 11:14 AM

          Maybe we could waddle around the park a bit : ).

    2. c
      cubanat Aug 4, 2011 11:30 AM

      do it without any hestitation! You seem to have timed it right with a big enough spread in between. get a 9pm reso at emp if possible. happy bd.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cubanat
        Spiritchaser Aug 4, 2011 11:45 AM

        Thanks. And oddly enough that's exactly the time she got for EMP rez.

      2. r
        RGR Aug 4, 2011 11:42 AM

        Our one meal at per se was lunch (on a Sunday). We did the 9-course menu. I think we started at 12:30 and finished around 5 - 5:30. We weren't hungry again until around 10 p.m.

        EMP accepts reservations as late as 10 p.m. That's when I'd reserve. Even at that hour, they will serve you the tasting menu if you have the appetite/stomach room for it.

        Happy Big Birthday!

        http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

        5 Replies
        1. re: RGR
          Spiritchaser Aug 5, 2011 11:12 AM

          My GF is adamant about doing the full (9 course) menu at Per Se (whudda a girlfriend huh?) so maybe we will push the 9 rez back to 10 but just (just!?) do the 4 course at EMP (maybe throw in an extra course) but I don't thnk we'd have the space for the Gourmond tasting. We'll have a chance to catch our breath between meals so I think it will work.

          Thanks for the birthday wishes!

          -----
          Per Se
          10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

          1. re: Spiritchaser
            r
            RGR Aug 5, 2011 01:16 PM

            You're welcome!

            I agree that if you're doing EMP for dinner, the 4-course is the better way to go. A good option for an additional course is the cheese, which usually appears on the dessert line. You can either each have your own plate or just share one.

            Have you given any consideration to flipping them and, as has been mentioned by edwardspk, doing EMP for lunch and per se for dinner? If you book lunch at noon, you'd be out between 2 and 3. And with, say, a 9 p.m. dinner reservation, you'd have 6 hours between the two meals, which should be sufficient time to recover your appetite and be able to do the 9-course menu with all the bells & whistles.

            http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

            1. re: RGR
              ellenost Aug 5, 2011 01:41 PM

              It's probably too difficult to switch the Per Se reservation to dinner at this time. Probably easier to switch EMP to lunch.

              1. re: ellenost
                Spiritchaser Aug 5, 2011 01:52 PM

                Yeah, looks like the dinner switch to Per Se is not an option now.

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                Per Se
                10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                1. re: Spiritchaser
                  r
                  RGR Aug 5, 2011 03:55 PM

                  I had a feeling that might be the case. So, I definitely think it's a good idea to push EMP to 10 p.m. Worst that can happen is that you show up hungrier than you anticipated....

                  http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

        2. n
          nextguy Aug 4, 2011 12:55 PM

          Like RGR I had an early lunch at Per Se that lasted 3 or maybe 4 hours. I could not eat again until 10PM! The food keeps coming and then you get the mignardaises. Unless you have an epic appetite or you want to forgo some of the amazing breads or desserts, I wouldn't do them both the same day even though the idea appeals to me as much as it probably appeals to you.

          -----
          Per Se
          10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

          1. loratliff Aug 4, 2011 02:47 PM

            I have to say, I think it's overkill, but obviously everyone's appetite/tolerance is different. I typically won't eat the day leading up to meal like those at Per Se or EMP, so I couldn't imagine two incredibly rich meals back to back.

            -----
            Per Se
            10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

            1. uhockey Aug 4, 2011 02:51 PM

              Spent 4.5 hours for lunch at EMP followed by 3.5 hours of dinner at Corton. Didn't feel like a waste at all. Felt like heaven. :-)

              http://uhockey.blogspot.com

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              Corton
              239 West Broadway, New York, NY 10013

              2 Replies
              1. re: uhockey
                j
                j.jessica.lee Aug 4, 2011 03:09 PM

                Ha! But you have an appetite and stomach capacity of epic proportions! :) However, in all seriousness, with the right kind of preparation, even with someone as small as I, I think it could be very possible. Good suggestion with the in between run, Kathryn.

                1. re: j.jessica.lee
                  uhockey Aug 4, 2011 06:07 PM

                  I don't resemble that remark. :-)

                  ... though to be fair I did do 4 courses at Convivio followed by 28 at Per Se when I ate there. Probably the most full I've been in the last 2 years.

                  Also - if you can run after a meal at either place you clearly short-changed youself. A quick walk from the table at EMP to the table at Corton was all the exercise I had between......I choose to run in the early morning hours. :-)

                  http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                  -----
                  Per Se
                  10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                  Corton
                  239 West Broadway, New York, NY 10013

              2. skylineR33 Aug 4, 2011 03:25 PM

                I would rather have the FULL tasting menu at EMP OR Per Se rather than a 5-course (at Per Se) followed by a 4 course dinner (at EMP) on the same day.

                I think there is no way one can enjoy both FULL tasting menu of the 2 restaurants on the same day. Even one has the stomach for it, it is too rush to do both. I would rather have it a relax way on my birthday.

                1. e
                  edwardspk Aug 4, 2011 03:29 PM

                  You can definitely do both, but personally I would do them in the reverse order. Lunch at EMP and dinner at Per Se. I would do 3-4 courses at EMP and enjoy the beautiful dining room in the daylight, then go for the 9-course at Per Se and enjoy the lovely lights and view. That sounds more ideal to me. As an aside, lucky you to have a girlfriend who wants to blow that much money on you in one day! She must really love you. Happy Birthday!

                  -----
                  Per Se
                  10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: edwardspk
                    u
                    uwsister Aug 4, 2011 07:27 PM

                    >Lunch at EMP and dinner at Per Se

                    I personally wouldn't do both meals on one day (I can only do one big meal a day) but if I were to fit both in - this is how I would do it as well.

                    -----
                    Per Se
                    10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                    1. re: edwardspk
                      b
                      bronwen Aug 5, 2011 08:55 AM

                      I wouldn't do the courses at EMP , just order an entree.

                      1. re: bronwen
                        uhockey Aug 5, 2011 08:58 AM

                        You can't - it is a prix fixe.

                        http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                      2. re: edwardspk
                        Spiritchaser Aug 5, 2011 11:17 AM

                        Thank you for he comments regarding my girlfriend, she is the greatest person in the World. I don't believe in luck but I do thank the Universe everyday for allowing me to be with her!

                      3. n
                        Nancy S. Aug 4, 2011 07:30 PM

                        For me it would be too much. I would not be able to appreciate the nuance of the dinner preparations. Also, for me, I would want wine with each meal, and I do not think I have the capacity for that as well. However, this is a personal choice, and I can imagine that others may be able to master both dinners. Nevertheless, separating the meals between two days seems to me a preferable idea, if that is an option.

                        1. sgordon Aug 5, 2011 09:40 AM

                          I vote overkill, though I seem to be in the minority on that. Even putting aside stomach space, I think my palate would be blown out. Whichever meal came second would likely suffer in comparison. If I were to do a double splurge (which I wouldn't, actually) I'd make them very, very different. I'd do, say, EMP for lunch and Kyo Ya's kaiseki for dinner. Or something like that.

                          That said, make sure your Lipitor prescription is full!

                          -----
                          Kyo Ya
                          94 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: sgordon
                            uhockey Aug 5, 2011 11:11 AM

                            Lipitor does not block uptake - would be better off with a bile acid sequestrant. :-) Just sayin'

                            Anyhow - what is this about "palate blown out" - I've now seen two people mention this and it seems to imply that if one eats enough novel tastes they can no longer appreciate more? Given the 40+ course length at a place like El Bulli I think this concept is unlikely.

                            http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                            1. re: uhockey
                              n
                              nextguy Aug 5, 2011 11:23 AM

                              My take on this is that the 40+ course at El Bulli is both paced and scaled for one to enjoy every course and to be full at the end of the meal. The same could be said at a restaurant that offers only 8 courses. At the end of that meal you are just as full as if you had the 40+ at El Bulli.

                              Let me put it to you this way, would you eat at Per Se after a 40+ course meal at El Bulli? Actually you probably would! Most people I venture would not.

                              -----
                              Per Se
                              10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                              1. re: nextguy
                                n
                                nextguy Aug 5, 2011 11:28 AM

                                Sorry ignore my last response as it does not pertain to "palate blow out". My comment is in regards to stomach capacity which was not the subject you were discussing.

                                1. re: nextguy
                                  uhockey Aug 5, 2011 02:55 PM

                                  Agreed - it was about the blowout comment.

                                  And yes - I'd try!

                                  http://uhockey.blogspot.com

                          2. Spiritchaser Aug 5, 2011 11:20 AM

                            Many thanks to all the 'hounds for their opinions and the birthday wishes. Amazing that I thought I would just get a lot of yes or no answers but it's great seeing what others think and the thought that goes into your answers.

                            Thanks again.

                            1. s
                              sambolef Aug 6, 2011 05:19 AM

                              i would go to both restaurants, tell the floor mgr. it's ur birthday & that emp & per se are ur 2 favorite
                              restaurants & ask if it would be possible to share 1 tasting menu in each restaurant.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: sambolef
                                c
                                cameronsugar Aug 6, 2011 07:54 AM

                                Do not ever try to share a tasting menu. I have worked at degustation format restaurants and this is highly frowned upon.

                                In terms of the two meals in one day, my concern would be with wine. I personally would have a hard time recovering from the wine at lunch.

                                1. re: cameronsugar
                                  r
                                  RGR Aug 6, 2011 03:10 PM

                                  One does not necessarily have to do a wine pairing for each of per se's nine courses. My husband decided to do 5 pairings and discussed his preferences with the sommelier. It worked out very well for him. (Our daughter, son-in-law, and I did not drink any wine.)

                                  http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

                                  1. re: RGR
                                    Spiritchaser Aug 6, 2011 04:06 PM

                                    I agree. GF and I love love love wine BUT I am always very up front with the Sommelier and tell them straight out that we don't want to "drink too much". We have had great response to our honestly and have been given half pours (basically a nice size taste) of some wines if the Sommelier feels it a perfect match with a particular course or full pours that will cover more than one course.

                              2. Spiritchaser Aug 31, 2011 06:04 AM

                                UPDATE: So my day of food turned into a few days of food. We needed lunch on the day prior to my birthday and decided to see if Jean George had an opening for lunch, it did, so we went. It was just going to be a "quick" lunch but there were so many good sounding items on the menu we wound up doing 3 courses and dessert. The food was some of the best we have ever had at JG, I think their game has come up a bit from the last visit, I hope it's a trend that continues. I had sea trout sashimi, the foie with strawberries (fantastic), and the sweet breads (wonderful but I wish they had only given 2 instead of 3 because they were a really nice size). Since lunch was late-ish we were good without dinner but stopped in to Daniel lounge for a drink later that night. The bartender, Arneux, asked if it would be okay if he ordered us a "snack" , something salty. We thought it would be a good idea just in case lunch wore off around bed time. We were given a beautiful multi tiered assortment of amuses, fish and meat for me, veg alternatives for GF. WONDERFUL! Little amuses with more style and flavor then some restaurants mains. Our drinks were incredible, super fresh ingredients, perfect weight for summer time.

                                On Friday, b-day, Per Se was beautiful in a very reserved way. Started with asome nice, "bright" cocktails and when we said we'd like to finish our drinks before ordering we were told to take as long as we wanted. After the drinks we explained to our Captain about dinner later on and that we didn't want to drink too much and he said he could take care of everything, set us up with a couple half bottles and said he would augment if a particulary nice glass would go with a certain course. His pace and pairings were perfect! We managed to enjoy wine with every course but left filling no ill side affects. The food was the best we have ever had at Per Se. I've said before there was a couple dishes I wasn't crazy about but this time, every bit was a knock out and the Keller philosophy was in true form, perfect bites and then gone, each dish was the best thing you ate until the next thing you ate, it was an incredible progression. Last time I said I would get back when I could, this time I can't get back soon enough! Stroll through the park, burn off 3 calories, and go take a break before dinner.

                                Dinner at EMP. The room, as always, beautiful. Everyone saying hello and wishing me a happy birthday, a really nice (and IMO genuine) touch. Beautiful table with a wonderful view of the entire restaurant and out through the windows. Not where we usually sit but I think they really wanted us to experience another perspective on a special occasion, again, a really nice gesture. Soon after be seated, our Captain, Kevin, presented us with glasses of a wonderful Grand Cru champagne to mark the occassion. We decided to go with the 4 courses without additions. I choose the rabbit (because it was so good last time I had to grab it again - what a fantastic dish), the Loup de mar (this was an example of how fish is cooked perfectly), and (in a first for me) the chicken. Perfectly cooked, incredible taste, and the fricasse of leg served on the side was out of this World good (I actually think my mouth started watering when I wrote that). I had the cheese dessert and was very disappointed I couldn't finish it, it was so good but I was bordering on a food coma so I had to give in. Our Sommelier, Erin I believe, was the newest in the team but she was spot on with her recommendations, her knowledge was excellent, she will do very well at EMP. Chef Humm stopped by to chat for a few, he so deserves anything great that comes his way, you can see how passionate he is about what he does. Thanks for a great birthday EMP.

                                All in all a fantastic celebration made possible by my GF and several excpetional restaurants and the people that make them great.

                                -----
                                Per Se
                                10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

                                Jean Georges
                                1 Central Park W, New York, NY 10023

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Spiritchaser
                                  ellenost Aug 31, 2011 06:18 AM

                                  Great report (as always)! Glad you had a sensational birthday celebration. Did you have the 5 or 9 course meal at Per Se? Kevin at EMP is receiving much deserved high praise from this board. I know he and Will must be beaming with pride.

                                  1. re: ellenost
                                    Spiritchaser Aug 31, 2011 06:41 AM

                                    Thank you ellenost. We did the 9 at Per Se, I waffled a bit at first but had to do it when I saw the menu, just too many things I liked. Kevin deserves the praise. Oh, and I feel very badly for not saying this in my update, but Daniel is so smooth in his role as Manager, he always makes it looks effortless and easy on the surface but it's gotta be nuts keeping things flowing.

                                    -----
                                    Per Se
                                    10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

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