Alinea To Go

nicko

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A few weeks ago a good friend contacted me and told me Alinea restaurant (3 michelin stars and often in the top 10 of San Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants) was offer a 5 course take away menu to celebrate their 15 year anniversary. Last night we enjoyed this meal and here are a few photos I hope you enjoy.

Few notable things:
  • The menu for two cost: $49.95 a person
  • The meal came with 4 pages of instructions. :)
  • Grant Achatz posted instructional plating videos on his Instagram feed.
  • The menu and experience has been so popular that they have extended it to May 21.


Alinea’s 15th Anniversary Experience
Celebrate Alinea’s 15 Year Anniversary with a creative and delicious 6-course menu. Embrace your inner-Chef following Chef Achatz's instructions:

Blis Steelhead Roe:
Coconut Pudding • Carrot • Turmeric • Passionfruit Gel

Chilled English Pea Soup:
Chamomile Compressed Cantaloupe • Yogurt Custard • Nueske's Ham

Spicy Gulf Prawn:
Cucumber • Thai Curry Sauce • Thai Aromatic Salt

“Rootbeer” of Braised Beef Short Rib:
Fennel • Vanilla scented 50/50 Potatoes • Dark Dried Fruits

Wild Mushrooms and Green Asparagus:
Lapsang Souchong Tea Emulsion • Pickled Shallots

Chocolate 64% on Your Table:
Strawberry • Vanilla • Hazelnut Praline • Blueberry •Lemon









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nicko

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Joined Oct 5, 2001
More photos Spicy Gulf Prawn preparation:
This comes with a container of Thai salt that you heat in the oven and the only purpose is to provide aroma while you eat the prawns.

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Very cool! Thanks for sharing Nicko. I would have been all over that dinner at $49,95 per, just because. Chef Achatz put a lot of time and effort into his offering. His drive and passion is obvious, no wonder he is a wonder. :~)
 

nicko

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Joined Oct 5, 2001
cheflayne cheflayne you are right for anyone who has always wanted to try Alinea but it is out of reach because of the cost this is a fun and reasonably priced way to do it. For the prawn dish there is a lemon grass tumeric salt you heat in the oven then stir when you serve. It brings out a great aroma and it was a lot of un.
 

niketas

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Looks awesome! I wish I could try it.

Do you think this is something we could see from more Michelin Star restaurants?
 

nicko

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Yes in fact most of the michelin restaurants in Chicago are offering curbside pick up. In many ways they have to because it is the only source of income they have right now. Sadly I don't think many restaurants will survive. Here are a few places that are offering take away.

  • Alinea
  • Acadia
  • Boka
  • EL Ideas
  • Elske
  • Entente
  • Next
  • Omakase Yume
  • Oriole
  • Parachute
  • Schwa
  • Smyth
  • Temporis

Now is a great time to eat at these restaurants and enjoy their menus at a much lower price.
 
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That is amazing thank you for sharing such a personal experience with us like cheflayne said i would be all over that affordable takeout!!
 

nicko

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BTW...great plating Nicko.......
Thanks chefross chefross a long time ago I used to have some pretty solid plating/presentation skills but after 30 years they are ok but don't have that same polish. It sure was a lot of fun to feel like I was back in the kitchen plating something special.
 
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Perhaps the popularity of this style of "take out" from a Michelin starred restaurant could be the beginning of a new type of business model for them?? Specifically, the idea that a customer could purchase the prepared meal and then plate it themselves either in accordance with the written instructions or on their own could provide a dimension to the dining experience never before thought possible or more to the point, plausible?? Could this be the part of the next evolution of the so called "food renaissance?"

Think about it. When has a customer ever been so intimately involved in the preparation, plating and presentation of their dishes outside of their own homes??

I'm very interested in watching how this develops and its reception over time.

Thanks for sharing, Nicko. :)
 
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niketas

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Joined Apr 22, 2020
Perhaps the popularity of this style of "take out" from a Michelin starred restaurant could be the beginning of a new type of business model for them?? Specifically, the idea that a customer could purchase the prepared meal and then plate it themselves either in accordance with the written instructions or on their own could provide a dimension to the dining experience never before thought possible or more to the point, plausible?? Could this be the part of the next evolution of the so called "food renaissance?"

Think about it. When has a customer ever been so intimately involved in the preparation, plating and presentation of their dishes outside of their own homes??

I'm very interested in watching how this develops and its reception over time.

Thanks for sharing, Nicko. :)
I remember when I was in business school, we read a case study on IKEA and why they were so popular. They were curious to find out why people continued to hold onto old piece they had bought from IKEA even though they are not necessarily the most well built or best looking furniture.

They concluded that customers like IKEA so much because they (the customer) are the ones that have to build and assemble the piece. Therefore they feel a strong connection to the item itself, and feel as though it is something they built from scratch.

They also saw this when creating at-home cake mixes. They were not successful when first introduced, but when they adjusted the recipe to "Just Add An Egg" (or something of the sort) they began to fly off the shelves, because people felt that they were baking the whole thing from scratch.

I wonder if we could see this, or something similar, from these "Prepare and Plate At Home" meals.
 
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Joined Mar 1, 2017
I remember when I was in business school, we read a case study on IKEA and why they were so popular. They were curious to find out why people continued to hold onto old piece they had bought from IKEA even though they are not necessarily the most well built or best looking furniture.

They concluded that customers like IKEA so much because they (the customer) are the ones that have to build and assemble the piece. Therefore they feel a strong connection to the item itself, and feel as though it is something they built from scratch.

They also saw this when creating at-home cake mixes. They were not successful when first introduced, but when they adjusted the recipe to "Just Add An Egg" (or something of the sort) they began to fly off the shelves, because people felt that they were baking the whole thing from scratch.

I wonder if we could see this, or something similar, from these "Prepare and Plate At Home" meals.
We did a similar study in business school (back when we used stone slabs and chisels) that focused on tv dinners vs. conventional meals. Back then, most people thought of tv dinners as novelties and largely treated them as such. Traditionally prepared meals were heavily favored precisely because of the work and effort that went into preparing them. Generally speaking, the more work that went into the meal, the more value that it had across a wide variety of categories, especially when it came to the value of taking care of the family.

So, yes....I'm with you there. I'm curious to see where this sort of "take out" goes and whether or not it has any staying power.

:)
 
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