New York City Review: GILTy pleasures

Gilt at the New York Palace Hotel
455 Madison Avenue

I went to Gilt to celebrate my friend Robert’s birthday (October 2010). For some reason I always thought Gilt was a club or lounge, and I had never heard about their food before. The poor quality of my photos do no justice to the beautifully plated food at Gilt. Surprisingly the food was not just aesthetically pleasing to look at but also interestingly flavorful as well. We had the Chef’s Grand Tasting with a few extra dishes since Robert had connections. I had about 5 glasses of wine to pair with some of the courses.

The amuse bouche was a Chicken Liver Mousse with Pumpkin Custard and Curry Cranberry. Two, three spoonfuls of sweet, savory and tart. A perfect start to the meal.

Lamb Croquette with Onion Jus, Harissa and Apple Chutney (paired with a Duc de Romet, Champagne, “Brut Grande Cuvee”)

North Atlantic Fluke with Green Apple, Beetroot, Juniper and Dill: not at all what you would imagine. It wasn’t my favorite course of the night but it was definitely one of the most interesting. The raw fluke was wrapped with a thin sheet of red beet gelee and it was accompanied with compressed frozen green apple and thin strings of fried golden beet (addictive). The variation in texture was what made this dish.

Ruby Red Shrimp with Nori, Toasted Sesame, Turnip and Pear (paired with a Kesselstatt, Riesling, “Scharzhofberger”, Spatlese, Saar, Germany 2007): the broth was what I liked most about this dish. Nice variation of texture again.

Matsutake with Roasted Chicken Consomme, Smoked Egg, Pine and Huckleberry: the smoked egg was pretty divine. I personally prefer matsutake griled because I don’t think you can fully enjoy the aroma when it’s raw. The huckleberry tapioca balls were a little excessive.

Chatham Cod with Marcona Almond, Brandade, Chorizo and Verjus (paired with a Philippe Faury, Marsanne & Roussane, Saint- Joseph, Rhone Valley, France 2008): was not a big fan of the cod. Not much flavor to it and just didn’t look very appetizing. Didn’t help that it was paired with a grape varietal that I don’t like!

Mangalitsa Pork with Apple, Cabbage, Oyster and Chestnut (paired with a Lopez de Heredia, “Reserva Bosconia”, Rioja, Spain 2002): nice, small portion of a delicious pork belly. “Pork with oyster???” was my reaction, but the brininess of the oyster was a nice addition to the pork because it was glazed with a sweet sauce.

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Mandarin Orange Sorbet and Sablee Crunch: simple and straight to the point.

Huckleberry Creme Brulee with Dulce de Leche (paired with a Tokaj Classic, Tokaji, “Late Harvest Classic Cuvee”, Tokaj-Hegyalja, Hungary 2004): delcious dessert wine! This dessert was a deconstructed creme brulee. Tasted exactly like it, but it was in the shape of a ball and there was huckleberry sauce inside it.

Chocolate Liege Waffle with Milk Chocolate Sorbet and Caramel

I had been recovering from a torn ACL and I had to hobble downstairs to use the bathroom. A lady with an Australian accent offered to help me because she was a nurse. We had a small conversation walking down to the bathroom and turns out she used to live in Singapore. We talked about how we miss chicken rice, char kway teow etc. Funny how we crave these kinds of street food even while having an extravagant meal at a restaurant like Gilt 🙂

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