Eleven Madison Park’s Winter 2018 Menu Wows Us Big Time!

Eleven Madison Park

I’ve never made it a secret that I much prefer EMP’s spring and summer menus to those in fall and winter. Because of last year’s renovations, there were no spring and summer menus. Instead, between April and the June 9th closure, they served a terrific retrospective menu which I wrote about here. When they reopened in October, the fall menu was in place. We had it on my birthday. (Photo set here.) There was one standout, the spectacular sturgeon cheesecake. I did enjoy the main course veal and loved the dessert donut. Otherwise, to be honest, the meal was kind of meh. Even Michael felt it wasn’t their best effort. And I saw comments on food boards from a few people who also found it wanting. However, to be fair, we did speak to someone who said he and his dining companions loved it.

The winter menu was introduced at the beginning of January. We had it on the 26th which is Michael’s birthday. We did the vegetarian version earlier this month though we didn’t go entirely veg.

From someone who usually isn’t bowled over by the winter menus, I can say without hesitation or reservation that this winter menu – both the seasonal and vegetarian versions — was stunning! One of the best, if not THE best winter menu we’ve ever had anywhere.

(Note: Because the lighting during the day makes for far better photos than the dim illumination in the evening, wherever possible, I’ll be using the photos I took during lunch.)

Eleven Madison Park

Michael always begins our celebration dinners with his favorite Champagne. But he decided to have it at lunch as well since it paired well with several courses.

Krug

For me, my favorite non-alcoholic French Sparkling Cider.

French Sparkling Cider (Non-Alcoholic)

As you can see from the photo above, the box containing the first nibbles at all EMP meals are already on the table when guests are seated: Black & White Cookies with Cheddar and Apple.

Black and White Cookies

House Made Rolls, Cultured Butter Topped with Kombu, and Amagansett Sea Salt were served at the beginning of the meals. I found the kombu too fishy, so at lunch, I requested an additional dish of plain butter.

House Made Roll, Butter, and Sea Salt

Along with the bread service Scallop Broth (Seasonal) and Fennel Broth (Vegetarian) were poured at the table. The broths’ flavors corresponded to the first courses.

Fennel Broth

1st Course (Seasonal): Scallop Live with Sea Urchin and Scallop Butter. (The sea urchin was underneath. Mine did not include it.)

Scallop

1st Course (Vegetarian): Pear Poached with Almond and Fennel

Pear

2nd Course (Seasonal): Caviar Benedict with Smoked Ham, Sturgeon, and Hollandaise

Caviar Benedict

Since I don’t eat caviar, I was served Black Truffle Benedict with Cauliflower and Hollandaise. On the vegetarian menu, it was the 2nd course for both us.

Black Truffle Benedict

The Benedicts were accompanied by House Made English Muffins.

House Made English Muffins

3rd Course (Seasonal and Vegetarian): Foie Gras Marinated with Squash and Pumpkin Seeds. An incredible work of art and so-o-o-o luscious! Having it again was an absolute must!

Foie Gras

Next on the seasonal menu was the fish/seafood course where we got to choose.

4th Course (Seasonal): 4th Course (Seasonal): Lobster Butter-Poached with Butternut Squash and Chestnut (Michael’s choice)

Lobster

Halibut Poached with Variations of Turnips (My choice)

Halibut

4th Course (Vegetarian): Lentils with Potato and Garlic

Lentils

Note: At lunch, Michael wanted to have the halibut. I certainly had no objection to having it again as it was really delicious. So, it was served as an extra course between the 4th and 5th.

5th Course (Seasonal and Vegetarian): Mushroom Tart with Cremini and Black Truffle. A two-part course finished and served at the table. So extraordinary, we were thrilled to have it again.

Mushroom

Mushroom

Mushroom

Note: In addition to these still shots, I took videos with my iPhone. The one in the evening is rather dark. At lunch, I took it in 5 segments. They came out great! They’re posted on my Instagram. To view them, search for @rozrap.

6th Course (Seasonal): Venison En Croûte with Foie Gras and Civet. I don’t usually eat venison, but I love things En Croûte. And as the self-styled Foie Gras Queen, I would never pass this up.

Venison

6th Course (Vegetarian): Cabbage Roasted with Apple and Thyme

Cabbage

6th Course Sides:
Carrot Roasted with Buckwheat and Mustard (Seasonal)

Carrot

Potato Baked with Horseradish and Bacon (Vegetarian) Obviously, not exactly. But since we weren’t being strictly veg, why not?

Potato

Leeks Roasted with Hazelnut and Parmesan (Seasonal and Vegetarian)

Leek

7th Course (Seasonal and Vegetarian): Tubby Cheese Grilled with Celery Root, Black Truffle, and Winter Greens

Tubby Cheese

Winter Greens

There were choices for dessert.

8th Course (Seasonal): Chocolate Tuile with Crème Fraiche Ice Cream and Cranberry (Obviously Michael’s choice)

Chocolate

For me, Butternut Squash with Sarsaparilla and Pumpkin Cake

Butternut Squash

8th Course (Vegetarian): Michael had the Butternut Squash while I had Pear-Cranberry Donut with Mulled Wine Ice Cream.

Pear-Cranberry Donut//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

As has become the custom, at the end: Chocolate Covered Pretzels with Sea Salt.

Pretzels

We had Kitchen Visits during both meals. The lagniappe at both was this truffle cream-filled cone topped with crunchies and a black truffle.

Kitchen Visit

During the lunch visit, I snapped this photo of the “conga line” assembling that mind-boggling foie gras.

Kitchen Visit

Mega-kudos to Chef Humm, Chef de Cuisine Dmitri Nagi, and their entire team! A huge “Thank you!” to our captains Pam in January and Stephen during lunch for their usual stellar service. And a special nod to Pam and Service Director Kevin Lind who starred in my videos and did an outstanding job serving that mushroom course.

The spring menu starts on April 7th. If you can get there before then, go!

The complete photo sets for these two meals including the wine pairings can be viewed on my Flickr, dinner here and lunch here.

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One Response to “Eleven Madison Park’s Winter 2018 Menu Wows Us Big Time!”

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