One week, 18 Michelin Stars
In late September, I did a 18 (Michelin) star run through NYC. I won't write a review of each restaurant but the meals that stood out for me are Per Se (1st visit), EMP (second visit), Atera (first), and Ko. I went to Corton (2nd time) and it really was not the same restaurant or food that I loved the first time (2010). I thought wd~50 was pretty fun but just like Corton, I felt it was overpriced. I was at Ichimura the night the Wells review came out and it was a great mood. He had some really funky stuff like aged fish or fish wrapped in kombu to cure. Jean-Georges was amazing as always for lunch (talk about reliable), and I enjoyed the food and atmosphere at Tori Shin. It was the second week for the new format at EMP but my friend had gone the first week (and he came with me as well), so he was able to tell me the tweaks they made. If you have any questions, let me know. Oh yeah, no pictures for Ko, for obvious reasons.
Eleven Madison Park
Your 4 stand out restaurants are some of my favorites too. On my way to lunch at Ko; heading back to Atera in a few weeks. Need to schedule dinners/lunches at both EMP and Per Se. Enjoyed your photos.
I tried Corton's tasting menu in August. The main entrees were exquisite and creative. The primary rabbit dish, for instance, is exploded into a kind of abstract garden. I don't know of another restaurant in the city that is avante-garde like that. For example, Atera's fish and beef courses are excellent and sophisticated, but stylistically more accessible, and definitely less crazy. (I will point out that Atera's desserts and petits are very, very good.)
The other crazy course was a "fairy tale" of caviar and eggplant. I think that's the first non-food course I've ever had in my life, i.e. art about food and using food, but not food that your body would care to eat. For example the eggplant dust was literally for show, unless you stuck your finger into the grooves of the plate.
So, I thought Corton was great. The food may not be easy depending on the diner, but they're doing something really special over there.
Thanks for the tip about Jungsik. I am definitely adding it to the list next time I return to NYC which will probably be at least a year from now. For me, Corton has missed a step. First, I think it's over priced for what it is. I think the decor is lacking. I think the service is just ok. And we were rushed through our meal. It felt extremely fast. Also there were some issues with the starters/amuses like a chawanmushi that wasn't set. It shouldn't have gone out. I loved it two years ago, now, I think they are resting on their laurels.