Sunday, September 27, 2009

Coming Ko-rrect...

While this restaurant is subject to a wide variety of opinions in the blogosphere, I just wanted to relay my thoughts as I dined at Momofuku Ko a few nights ago. Forget the sparse minimalist 12-seats, impossible reservation system that rewards those with itchy trigger fingers and super fast internet connections or even the slightly underwhelming wine list...this place is what I would open with unlimited funds and no one to answer to. Complete with a pumping soundtrack of every thing I love musically: Jay Z to Weezer to Led Zeppelin to Mos Def to James Brown, it's an unrelenting artistic endeavor. Why else would one open a micro-sized, mega-course restaurant with a food max $ intake of $2400 ($100 pp x 12 seats and two seatings) a night? Certainly not a king’s ransom in Manhattan...

But it's really about the food. Determined to live in the moment and not tweet my way through the dining experience, I didn't document each of the 10+ courses presented. But this was clearly the best meal I've ever had in NYC and pretty close to the best one ever, period. The amuse of feather light Pork Rind and an English Muffin of salty Pork fat melts in the mouth. Things like Oxtail Consomm√© with Caramelized Onion Ravioli, Purple Basil and Cilantro were so fine and subtle, while an intense southwestern inspired, Sweet Grilled Corn Ravioli with Chorizo, Pickled Heiloom Tomato and Scallions literally exploded with flavor. The amazing (and now famous) Lychee, Riesling Gelee, Pine Nut Brittle and shaved frozen Fois Gras just might be the best thing I’ve ever consumed despite the plate looking like a Fois Gras snowstorm. A Deep Fried Short Rib braised in Soy Sauce, Mirin and Sugar is wondrous. Blueberries with Black Pepper Crumble and Black Pepper Ganache is a sweet, savory dream.

I ordered a 375ml of 2004 Domaine Ferret Pouilly-Fuisse “Le Clos” which was delicious and drinking to perfection. I opted for the $45 corkage and brought a bottle from my cellar, 1996 Joseph Roty Gevrey Chambertin Les Fontenys 1er cru (link to the 2006 -- give it a decade and it will be just as amazing). It was showing brilliantly with loads of luscious black cherry fruit, Gevrey-spice, deep sappy cassis, and hints of animal. Phenomenal with the Short Rib…

I hope that one day I can return and despite the coolish demeanor of the guys behind the line, I’m in love. And when you’re in love, one’s slight foibles are endearing. If you are lucky enough to get in here, you’re really in for an unforgettable meal.

JCB the 4th

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