Locavore restaurant in New York named Best New Restaurant
Tuesday 10 May 2011
It's a farmhouse-style restaurant set in the middle of Manhattan that straddles the fence between hearty, local, homestead cooking and cuisine worthy of a fine-dining French chef.
And according to the James Beard Foundation Awards, Jean-George Vongerichten's ABC Kitchen is a stellar interpretation of barnyard meets haute cuisine, as it was named the Best New Restaurant at Monday night's awards gala.
Vongerichten teamed up with ABC Carpet & Home, a department store that sells sustainable furniture from recycled and reclaimed wood, to open a sister restaurant last March - a partnership that drew early snorts of snobbery from the food world.
Like its retail partner, ABC Kitchen is centered on sustainability and environmentally friendly practices: recycled beams from an old barn are used for architectural details; plates and bowls are made by local artists; silverware and dessert dishes are antique rescues; and placemats and menus are made from recycled paper.
The farm-to-table menu is set in a farmhouse setting made elegant with sweeping chandeliers, family-sized roundtables, and well-placed candles and wildflowers for warmth and intimacy.
Ingredients are local and organic, while wines are biodynamic and beers brewed locally.
Executive chef Dan Kluger - who came from Gramercy Tavern - sources his ingredients from the Union Square Greenmarket, and dishes are hearty and rustic.
While menus change seasonally, their inaugural offerings included dishes like peekytoe crab toast; shaved fluke with blood oranges; roasted pork T-bone with apple-meyer lemon purée and Swiss chard; and salted caramel peanut ice cream sundae.
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