We are full time experiencers. Our job, as we see it, is to go out into the world, eat things, and give you some kind of relatable and slightly entertaining opinion of such experiences. All with absolutely no expertise, credentials, or any other legitimate reason for you to listen to us – other than the fact that we are regular (really awesome) people, just like you. Sometimes that means eating two dinners in one night, sometimes it means braving a terrible dining experience one more time just to make sure we’re right, and other times it means dropping over $200 each on one single meal, which is exactly what we did at the Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare recently. All in the name of experience. At least that’s how I plan on justifying it when the credit card bill arrives. So why are people waiting months to get a reservation for one dinner that costs as much as it would to buy an entire pallet of Frosted Flakes next door? (that’s what I assume we would do with $400 at a grocery store). Much has been written about the Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare since two Michelin stars were dropped on it last year, but in case you don’t know the deal – here it is. This is an eighteen seat restaurant connected to the Brooklyn Fare market. Chef Cesar Ramirez oversees the prepared foods in the store by day, and by night, he turns into the Steven Hawkings of food, cooking insanely smart, mind blowing cuisine in what is basically a very nice open kitchen built for exactly such utility. Ramirez is a highly trained chef with an impressive pedigree, and he serves a meal that ends up being just shy of twenty courses, nearly all of which are incredible. The first eight to ten courses are canapes – perfect one or two bite dishes that are usually a creatively dressed piece of sashimi or seafood. Then come four entrees and two desserts.
So is Brooklyn Fare worth the money for the “experience?” In our opinion, absolutely. But eating food this good is the kind of thing that we’re ok with dropping some real money on, every once in a while. If that doesn’t sound like your thing (maybe you’re into skydiving, or VIP meet and greet tickets for Charlie Sheen), then don’t bother. But if you are looking for a high dollar food adventure for your bucket list, put this on there next to Momofuku Ko and Blue Hill at Stone Barns.
There were anywhere from ten to fifteen of these tiny dishes, most of which were served in some kind of awesome spoon or expensive porcelain thimble. Our favorites were the soy milk skin, which tasted like a very delicate tofu, a perfect piece of uni atop brioche and black truffle, kumamoto oyster with crème fraîche and oyster juice gelee, and a very simple but amazing piece of medai (a Japanese fish) with olive oil and lemon sea salt.
Each of our entrees was a demonstration in not only creativity, but perfect balance. The first dish, a lone scallop atop a thin piece of potato, spinach puree, and caviar was almost too good to process. As was the piece of monkfish served with a lobe of foie gras. We also had an incredible few bites of lamb, and a bowl with one whole langostine chilling on top of a crispy skinned piece of Chilean sea bass. Everything was excellent, but the scallop and the monkfish might have changed me forever.