Yours Truly - Carte Blanche?
I have reservations for the 15-20 course Carte Blanche menu in a couple weeks. Has anyone done this? Thoughts on quality/value? How does it stack up to a place like Momofuku Ko? (I've been a couple times for both lunch and dinner and YT seems to be a close analogue in length and price...Ko is more expensive but I'd still consider a deal.)
Just had the Carte Blanche. I absolutely wouldn't recommend it. On the one hand, we did get 20+ courses for less than $100. Sounds amazing. On the other hand, I thought I had maybe 4 or 5 solid courses, and a whole lot of mediocre filler. If you've had a bunch of great experiences there already, I'd stick to the regular card.
Things that I liked:
- Malpeque oysters with a mignonette. Nice choice of oyster: briny and creamy. Too bad I only got one, and there was bits of grit and shell in it.
- The devilled eggs. Don't know what they put in it, but it sure was tasty.
- Seared sea breem on a cream of leak and potato sauce with some mussels and potato chips. Nicely crisp layer on the fish, and a very tasty sauce. This was pretty much the second cooked dish we got.
- The bread. Too bad when I asked the server if it was a soda bread, she was totally confused and said, umm, "It's whole wheat."
- tiny ball of bacon ice cream, rolled in mochi
Things I didn't like:
- marinated mussels - a real wtf presentation, served at the bottom of a glass. Had to fish them out with a fork. Overly fishy.
- salt baked fingerling potato with nori butter - it's called a side. pair it with something else.
- poached egg on top of salsa verde and potato chips. It was covered in a foam with an unpleasant grainy texture. Too bad, the rest of it was tasty.
- the chicken. Beautiful presentation, with one tiny piece of chicken. I was told it was the chicken breast, only I bit into it and found it was an incredibly slimy piece of dark meat. Not cool.
- the desserts - a tasteless tower of frozen poached pear, and utterly tasteless and not creamy chocolate ice cream. The chocolate plate, with ice cream, ganache, and brownie also lacked flavor contrast. Also, they finished it all off with a stale house made Pocky.
There were a few other things which were ok, like the crudo/steak tartare, and the eel bite.
The food wasn't great, but the dining experience was excruciatingly torturous by the end, due to the extremely loud volume of the room. I
Had this on December 30th. It was about 25 Courses, split between 10 or so amuse bouche and maybe 12 courses with a few palate cleansers as well. Overall I was impressed. It was clever, well paced, tasty and extremely consistent, throughout. If anything I was expecting more "risks" or highs and lows throughout the meal and instead got a Terminator of tasting menus.
Highlights for me included:
-whipped chicken liver on a sweet, airy bread
-cold mussels in a gorgeously umami broth
-salt baked fingerling potato with nori butter
-potato mousse, sous vide egg, salsa verde and white truffel,
-a sous vide chicken and grains that included, if i'm not mistaken, lemon jelly and lemon cream.
-pickled eel "sandwich" which was a one bite puff pastry with pickled eel in it.
-eggnog custard with espesso foam served in an eggshell.
We had a nice Chadsey's Chardonney, and a pretty versitile Oris Ciu Ciu .
I had very high expectations for this meal and wasn't at all disappointed. I wanted maybe a few more adventurous plates, but everything was done with consistency and the meal really hung together well as a whole. I would absolutely try this again when i've the money to indulge myself. It would be nice to go back in the summer to see how the menu reflects the season.