In my reviews of Masa, Per Se, Le Bernardin, I’ve mentioned that one of my favorite Michelin 3 star restaurants is Eleven Madison Park. Well, I was able to dig up pictures from my meal from August, 2014. Some things may have changed since then, so this review will based on my past experience and may not be reflective of the current experience.
This was actually our first 3 Michelin star dinner (we did Brooklyn Fare a couple of days later.) At the time, I knew it’d be expensive, and I knew there would be a lot of courses, but I don’t think I was prepared for the amount of food that we got. I remember being SO STUFFED at the end, and out of nowhere, the waiter drops a bottle of apple brandy and goes, “Enjoy” like it was a dare. I had one sip and couldn’t go any further.
My wife and I had the normal wine pairing. The brother in law chose the more expensive wine pairing. That may have been the first time I’ve seen Dom/Krug “on the ground.” We tasted some of his wines and they surely were better than our wine.
Like I said in my Le Bernardin review, eating at Michelin starred restaurants is more about the experience than just the food since that’s already top notch. At both Per Se and Le B, while the food was good, I’m not going to remember much about those meals down the road. Well, I will remember Per Se due to the pen fiasco, but that’s it.
What I remember from EMP is the apple brandy “mic-drop” move at the end. I also remembered the little “game” where you picked a card (could be something else – memory is hazy) when you sat down, and that would be the type of soda you got for the picnic course. Those are the 2 things I remembered off-hand. Looking back through the photos, I had forgotten that some courses were cooked table-side, which may sound like a gimmick, but I actually like that.
While I don’t think I’ll go back to EMP due to the cost, I would still recommend it over Per Se or Le B, just for the “experience” factor of it. Oh not to mention the ~16 courses versus the ~9 at both Per Se and Le B. Just make sure you put on your big boy eating pants.
Sorry for the dark photos; I forgot what phone I had at the time. Most likely a Galaxy Note 4 or 5. Compare it to my current reviews’ low-light iPhone 7+ photos.