NYC: Lunch and Teacups: Eleven Madison Park

Monday, September 12, 2011 10 No tags Permalink 0

I’m crazy about fancy lunches. A fancy dinner – anyone can have. But lunch? Now that is a true luxury. A carefully planned indulgence that involved taking a solid three hours from the middle of the day to just…eat. Ahhh!

So it was last Wednesday that Justin and I settled into a nice corner table at Eleven Madison Park. Justin was at the bar by the time I arrived at noon, waiting for me with two glasses rosé (truly the best kind of friend, no?)

Lunch started with a parade of appetizers. Dreams of…

…Gougeres

…Piment d’espelette and Parmesan Crisps

…Tomato Tea and Thyme

…Smoked Sturgeon Sabayon

…Uni Cappuccino, Crab, Apple

We oohed and ahhed over the dishware as much as the food itself. That sea urchin dish! And the tea cup! I was really superduperclose to stealing the tea cup and saucer set. Stunning and so simple. The only thing that could make that better is a matching tea pot.

Did I mention all this came before the bread service? Meet the ultimate cross between brioche and croissant. I first tried this bread in March when Pierre and I came for cocktails and nibbles at the bar. We enjoyed the bread so much that they sent us home with a quartet of the fresh rolls! Served warm with…

…goat butter, cow butter and salt.

[photo from Justin]

And then it was kitchen time. We were so grateful to get a tour of the kitchen and…

[photo from Justin]

…drink (or rather, eat) a Liquid Nitrogen Gin Cocktail with Apples, Frozen Meringue.

[photo from Justin]

A delicious theater, setting the stage for lunch. The first course was yet to come.

The menu is structured like this. Pick for going down, and the dishes will be (somewhat) tailored to your preference if you have any requests. Justin went with the entire 3rd column: Octopus, Loup de Mer, Pork, and Plum. I stuck to the 4th column for the first three courses: Rabbit, Lobster, and Beef. For the last/dessert course, I opted for the choice on the 1st column: Sheep’s Cheese.

Rabbit: Rillette with Cherries, Pistachio, and Pickled Onions

That little orb (complete with a stem!) is pistachio-crusted liquid cherry. Slice open and out oozes a savory-sweet sauce meant to be paired with the rillettes.

Octopus: Braised with Lemon, Chorizo, and Potato

Lobster: Lasagna with Zucchini and Lemon Verbena

Loup de Mer: Seared with Shrimp, Clams, Chorizo, and Bouillabaisse

We stopped with the wine between the 2nd and 3rd courses, and tried a few of the house Soft Cocktails. Orange Julius was the clear winner! There’s honey and orange blossom water in there – so beautiful.

Beef: Sous Vide and Roasted with Bone Marrow Crust, Summer Beans, Savory and Violet Mustard

Pork: Roasted with Apricots, Bacon, and Spinach

After the last savory course, they roll out a tableside trolley to create…Egg Creams!

Or more precisely, Egg Creams with Olive Oil and Vanilla Bean

Sheep’s Milk: A Tasting of Four Cheeses with Corn Pain Perdu, Tomato, and Ham

Plum: Roasted with Creme Caramel, Candied Orange, and Sage

Post plum and cheese, we craved a warm drink just to round out the meal. Coffee or tea? They serve teas from In Pursuit of Tea…though I hear there will be some changes soon. Excited to see what the new tea menu will bring. The current prices range from $8-$12 a pot, but if you flip to the front of the drinks menu there’s a selection of three ‘tableside tea services‘ running up to $26 (for two people) for teas such as matcha.

But then ‘tableside coffee services’ caught my attention, in particular the Siphon Coffee. At $22 I had to think twice, but since it served two people, we decided to go for it.

Conclusion: totally worth it, at least once ;)

Tableside Coffee: Siphon Pot: Finca La Clara, Costa Rica, Ecco Caffe. Coffee is served in the same teacup I lusted over at the start of lunch. Sadly enough, they’re custom-designed so buying one isn’t even an option. Alas, just one more reason to return!

A few last bites: Earl Grey Macarons with Chocolate and Blueberry, Raspberry Pâtes de Fruits, and Sesame-Honey Crisps. And then we were out the door (with a gifted mason jar of toasted coconut-laced granola), back to reality.

Eleven Madison Park
11 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10010
(212) 889-0905

10 Comments
  • ragingyoghurt
    November 30, -0001

    what beautiful food! my life would be more complete if i had pistachio covered liquid cherries. ;)

  • Chubbypanda
    September 12, 2011

    Lol. You sound like me going on about why afternoon naps are my favorite thing in the world.For some reason, the pic of the two butters and the salt really got me drooling. Love bread and butter.

  • anonymous
    September 12, 2011

    Oh holy crap! That entire presentation… from the food… to the dishware… to a sneak peak glance into the kitchen… is the ULTIMATE lunch experience! Man… if I don't envy your being in Paris… I envy you at lunch! :)

  • K and S
    September 12, 2011

    fabulous!

  • Kathy YL Chan
    September 13, 2011

    Hi Chubbypanda! How are you?! The bread, butter, and salt photos are my favourite as well ;) And afternoon naps are high on my list of things-to-love!!Hi Stephanie! Ahaha, thank you!! I only wish this was a weekly indulgence instead of a yearly one, but who's complaining? ;)Thanks Kat! :)

  • anonymous
    September 13, 2011

    Chao Chi Kathy! I've been following your blog for quite awhile now and absolutely love it. The photos couldn't be more beautiful (you should be invited to do a magazine spread one of these days!). The travels couldn't be more exciting. But most importantly, your appetite for food….which is totally awesome! I often use your site as reference for food/dining esp in regards to NY. That leads me to some questions about Eleven Madison Park. I will be having lunch there for the first time in Oct. My companion is a boyfriend who is very naive to fine dining. I'm a little worried about his reception but he said he wants to try it. We'll see. Question #1: is the meal actually 3hours long? Is that due to the service being slow or just because of the multitude of courses being served? I'm just worried about the time constraints of my short visit. #2: what were your top three dishes? #3: The dishes appear to be petite in size but with all the extra dishes that are included in the meal, were you well satiated? Just curious because my bf has a big appetite. Thanks ahead of time for your help!

  • krish
    September 13, 2011

    wow !so sweet…………wonderful job……………fabulous!………..

  • Kathy YL Chan
    September 13, 2011

    Hi Santorinii! Thanks for the sweet comment, so glad you like the blog and that it's been useful as well! ^_^ If you email me at: kathyylchan@gmail.com I'll be glad to help answer all your questions via email. (it's just a bit long to do via a comment :) Talk soon! :)

  • anonymous
    September 14, 2011

    I keep booking/canceling/rebooking Eleven Madison Park like we are in some complex relationship. That's it. Im back on board again! I need the rabbit, lobster and beef combo in my life. Looks so wonderful!

  • anonymous
    September 14, 2011

    This one looks to be my favorite: Beef: Sous Vide and Roasted with Bone Marrow Crust, Summer Beans, Savory and Violet MustardThe photographs of each delicious dish look fantastic.

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