Artisanal (in NYC)

3,853
12
Joined May 26, 2001
I ate lunch at Artisanal today, before having an interview there. This is a bistro that specializes in cheese -- they have 250 from all over the world! But I had absolutely NO CHEESE! What I did have was excellent: organic mesclun salad (very carefully picked over so there were no brown or rotten leaves, and thoroughly dried before dressing) with an almost-perfect vinaigrette. Then Crisp Skate wing a la grenobloise, but with blood orange juice in the sauce, and blood orange supremes on the plate in addition to the capers and croutons. Also some teeny cauliflower florets and a quenelle of cauliflower puree. The skate was just about the best I've ever had: perfectly fresh (which if skate isn't, boy, do you know it!), just dipped in milk and flour and sauteed to a golden crust, cooked just to the point of doneness. Probably they took it out of the pan just before it was done, and it finished to the right degree on the plate.

It was a terrific meal, because they use only the best ingredients and treat them with respect. Prices were high for a bistro, but it was definitely worth it!
 
4,508
32
Joined Jul 31, 2000
Suzanne, That sounds great!!!
Where is it? Maybe we should check it out for lunch.

BTW..I love skate wings.
Did they use only the blood orange in the sauce? or cut with some lemon to?

I haven't had Grenobloise in years...Did they have tiny fried croutons as well?
cc
 
3,853
12
Joined May 26, 2001
Afra: Yup. I just didn't want to have any cheese. Besides, everything else on the menu looked sooooooooo good (and what I had was!) But if I want to feast on cheese, this is a great place!!! Since now I know of 2 places where I can get Roaring Forties, maybe I won't envy the ChefTalkers from Down Under so much anymore.

CC: There might have been a little lemon, but mostly I tasted the sweet/tartness of the oranges. And, yes, the croutons were fried, so the first bites had soft fish in a crisp coating with crunchy croutons and popping bits of orange -- a carnival of textures! Unfortunately, since I'm a slow eater, by the time I was done the croutons were all soggy. But that was my own fault, not theirs.

Artisanal is at Park Avenue and 32nd Street -- it's in the space that Larry Forgione had for An American Place (its second location) and later Rosehill. Chef Terrance Brennan, Artisanal's owner, had the room renovated so it looks like a really spiffy bistro with lots of wood and mirrors and tile floors. But very high ceilings, so that even with lots of people there it was not too noisy.
 
2,938
11
Joined Mar 4, 2000
I ate at Picholine a few years ago, and I thought the cheese cart was very impressive. Apparently, Brennan outdoes himself at Artisinal. I have been wanting to check it out. Maybe we CAN stop by there when we get together.
 
1,635
158
Joined Aug 14, 2000
Ok I'll put it on my list. I've been to a Max McCallam ( the cave master) "class". The man can go on about cheese :) The place sounds great but you left out the most imprtant information! How did the interview go?
 
3,853
12
Joined May 26, 2001
Thanks for asking, Kyle. I trail there tomorrow (Monday) night. Even if I don't get a job there, I'll still eat there, that's for sure!
 
4,508
32
Joined Jul 31, 2000
Suzanne, Good luck tonight with your trail!!

Let us know how things go, (and how much cheese you ate)

cc
 
3,853
12
Joined May 26, 2001
Well, I got to trail on the fish station: scallops, salmon, skate, and dorade (as fish of the day), with their accompanying platings, plus one of the vegetable sides. It was a slow night, only about 200+ covers total. It felt really good to be back on the line -- except, man, it's really HOT there, since they only have flat-tops to cook on. The funniest thing was that the guy I was working with looked kind of familiar to me, so I asked him where he had worked before. Turns out he was at Le Bernardin when I did my externship there six (!) years ago, and only left there last summer. What a small world!

I have not heard back from the chef yet, but since he's short a sous right now he's working even crazier, longer hours than usual. We shall see.

As for cheese-eating: would you believe that the only cheese item I tasted was the gougeres. But boy, are they terrific!!!!!
 

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