The NoMad, NYC
February 19, 2013
Chef Daniel Humm and his General Manager Will Guidara have elevated Eleven Madison Park to the best restaurant in New York in the opinion of many, including us. So it was with great interest among foodies that they opened this restaurant in the nearby NoMad Hotel last year. Blair and I went for lunch on February 18, 2013.
There are several dining rooms and a bar off the ground floor lobby. We were seated in the central atrium room, with plenty of light from the overhead skylight. We were early, but the room eventually filled up. Although the tables are close together, one doesn’t have the feeling of being cramped. The noise level is reasonable. The welcome and service were always warm and efficient.
While we looked at the fairly limited lunch menu, Blair had a glass of
VENICA & VENICA, ‘RONCO DEL CERO’, COLLIO, ITALY 2011.
I started with a glass of
DOMAINE DE TRIENNES ‘SAINTE FLEUR’ VIN DE PAYS DU VAR, FRANCE 2009.
Both were refreshing and good.
The snacks were
BUTTER-DIPPED WITH FLEUR DE SEL
CROUSTILLANT WITH PARSLEY
These were hot and luscious.
We ordered a bottle of
FRANCK BALTHAZAR “CHAILLOT” 2005
This was properly decanted for us, but could have used more time to open up. It was rich with plenty of fruit. Very nice.
A warm fingerling potato and dill seed flatbread was put on the table.
The flavors of the dill and yeast were brought out well.
Blair’s first course was
GRATINÉE WITH PARSLEY, SHALLOTS & ANCHOVY
The small croutons added a needed crunch to the rich, diced bone marrow. Very good.
My first course was
POACHED WITH CLAMS, POTATO & BACON
There were only a few prawns, but they were good. The dish was extended by the potato and bacon shards. Everything was flavored by the clam broth foam which had a texture and flavor of the sea. Very good.
Blair’s main course was
CONFIT WITH DRIED PLUMS, ONIONS & WILD GREENS
The pressed square of suckling pig was excellent. The pork flavor was strong. The skin was very crispy. Along with the mustard there was a thin brown sauce with a stock, plus vinegar, that helped cut the richness.
This dish paired very well with the Cornas.
My main was
BONE MARROW-CRUSTED WITH SHORT RIB & SWEET POTATO
A tender filet mignon was topped with a marrow crust that continued its elegant flavor. The short rib had been braised in a very rich red wine sauce, presenting a contrast. This course took a long time to eat and enjoy in small bites.
A dessert trolley was rolled up to our table. Blair selected a glazed brioche with pear compote.
My dessert was a
CHOCOLATE TART WITH CARAMEL, HAZELNUT & FLEUR DE SEL
Like my beef course, this was best enjoyed in small, rich bites.
Our meal showed the talents of Chef Humm and those working for him now at The NoMad. The cuisine was always well planned and executed, without pretentions to be more than it was. The house specialty is a whole chicken with foie gras, truffles and brioche inserted under the skin. It is roasted to a dark brown in a wood burning oven. We saw several being presented before returning to the kitchen for carving and plating. It would be interesting to return and try, although it would be hard to resist choices from the more extensive dinner menu.