Telepan, NYC 3

February 13, 2009

On February 9, 2009, Linda and I returned to Telepan for dinner.  We started with glasses of 2006 “Honea” Palmina Arneis (Santa Ynez Valley.) We looked at the menu which offers four courses for $59, a real bargain, down from $64 at our meal here last August. tlaThere are seven choices for each course: appetizer, “mid-course,” main course and dessert. (A cheese course can be added for $10.) We ordered our food and a bottle of 2006 Brewer Clifton “Clos Pape” Pinot Noir (Santa Rita Hills.) Despite an amazing alcohol percentage of 15.4% and its young age, the wine was smooth and drinkable with a nice varietal flavor.

An amuse-gueule arrived: a slice of sourdough pizza, a chick pea/carrot crostino and a cup of pineapple/pecan soup, which was better than it sounds.

Linda’s appetizer was
slow-poached egg, telepan ham fontina & toasted garlic

Linda writes: “This is a very pleasing way to start a meal, with the egg just right, the thin ham succulent, the bread light and grilled, but the cheese not really evident.”

I started with
buckwheat-potato blini & black radish sour cream

This was lovely with just the right amount of smoke on the delicate trout. In the same way, there was just a touch of hot radish in the sour cream under the trout. A fine starter.

We both went on to
spaghetti, light herbs & shallot-garlic-tomato broth

Although the lobster could stand up to a stronger sauce than the trout, the chef did not overdo it and let the lobster flavor dominate. The green herbs included fresh dill, which isn’t very Italian, but made a nice touch. Bravo.

Linda’s main course was
fingerling potatoes, tuscan kale, meyer lemon & black pepper

Linda writes: “This was an excellent and light dish. The scallops were done just right. The kale was crispy and the potatoes tasty. The Meyer lemon sauce was good, but I had asked for it on the side and used it sparingly.”

My main was
white runner beans & salade lyonnaise

There were three different treatments of the tasty pork: slices of tenderloin, a thick chunk of heavily smoked bacon and a piece of sausage, hiding behind on the right. The big white beans in the base were cooked until they were just starting to get mushy and absorbed the pork flavors well. The salad was very crispy and added the needed textural contrast. Excellent.

Linda’s dessert was the homemade ice creams of the day: vanilla pecan, coffee and banana.

She liked them all, especially the vanilla pecan.

My dessert was
caramelized blood oranges & pecan florentine

This is one of the best desserts I have had recently. Oloroso sherry is a wonderful flavor for a custard. The orange slices added a needed citrusy accent and the pecan tile textural contrast.

Two little coconut macaroons were offered as mignardises.

The meal was very good. The chef picks his ingredients and flavors well and respects them. The ambience was quiet and enjoyable. The service was neither too much nor too little. It is a shame that the restaurant was only two-thirds full, but it was a Monday night in February during a recession. 

To see our blogpost on Telepan from last August click here.

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