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  1. #1
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    Default Instantly Famous Restaurant Opens

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    Somewhere in Time is Next, a New Restaurant with No Menu

    http://blog.friendseat.com/grant-achatz-next-chicago

    In early April, all the dining out foodie buzz in Chicago’s Fulton Market district centered on a new restaurant that curiously offers no menu choices or phone reservations, and does not permit walk-ins.

    The only way to dine at the masterfully unique “Next”, is to purchase meal tickets online, and the price varies depending on the day you dine.

    Tickets range from $65 to $110 for the same seven-course tasting menu, and you can forget about cancellations and refunds. Only groups of two or four are accepted; and there’s a separate chef’s table for six for $2,500, which includes a longer menu and wine.

    In the first week tickets for Next surfaced on Craigslist and eBay selling from $500 to $3000.

    Next, owned by Nick Kokonas and chef Grant Achatz, who owns a share in the three Michelin star restaurant Alinea, offers more than just exceptional dining fare.

    The menu is brilliantly crafted around a “place and time” theme which changes every three months, on a quarterly basis. The place could be anywhere, and the time period could be past, present, or future.

    “Rather than the earthbound categories of Japanese, Italian or Peruvian, the food will evoke cloudier concepts: Kyoto in springtime; Palermo in 1949; Hong Kong in far-off 2036. A menu might be designed around a single day — say, the Napa Valley on Oct. 28, 1996, the day Chef Achatz started work at the "French Laundry", where he remained until 2001.”

    The first menu for Next — to be served for three months — was refined by Achatz for an entire year, and embraces the cuisine of turn-of-the-century France, inspired from a book: Escoffier’s “Le Guide Culinaire,” first published in 1903.

    Moskin said Achatz actually traveled to Paris on the assumption that some classic restaurants would still be serving old-school haute cuisine in which he would find inspiration. “We found food from the ’60s, pre-nouvelle cuisine, but nothing from before that,” said Achatz. Mr. Achatz and Alinea’s chef de cuisine, Dave Beran, ended up drawing their recipes from Escoffier’s “Le Guide Culinaire”.

    The meals are served with silver and china from the same era found by a special team Achatz put together to hunt across antiques stores in the Midwest. They found a tray of silver egg cups, each one opening like the petals of a tulip, on eBay from a British hotel.

    Food critic Phil Vettel with the Chicago Tribune said that when dishes arrive, a captain provides historic background, explaining, for instance, how the sole Daumont is actually a pastiche of Escoffier presentation.

    Vettel describes the opening dish as a classic foie gras torchon and toasted brioche, except the torchon is placed in a hollow in the brioche’s center. Classic sauce gribiche is presented three dimensionally, as a whole poached quail egg, the hidden yolk still liquid, crowned with white anchovy and flecks of chervil and tarragon.

    The duck, says Vettel, is presented on a long platter with a sauce created by means of an antique duck press, located via Twitter from a restaurant in Maine.

    The lamb loin, said Vettel, is combined with sweetbread and tongue amid duchess potatoes and tomato concasse; and the chicken breast with sauce blanquette, is accompanied by a round of cooked cucumber filled with ground chicken, wrapped in a band of salt pork.

    Bloomberg’s Ryan Sutton described Next’s serving of caviar as a dollop of excellent Uruguayan osetra, paired with the softest potato blini.

    Osetra Baerii caviar is fresh aqua farmed sturgeon produced in Uruguay. Siberian sturgeon is raised on an aquafarm in the Rio Negro area just 275 km from Montevideo, Uruguay. Some say this aquafarm product rivals classic wild caviar for robustness and aromatic flavor.

    The sweet filet of sole, said Sutton, is covered in crayfish butter that will make you wonder what the Italians have been doing slathering their fish in nothing but olive oil all these years.

    Sutton describes having the hors d’oeuvres of boudin noir (blood sausage is one of France’s oldest charcuterie preparations), and boudin blanc (“white boudin” is a sausage stuffed with pork and rice) with Vincent Carre Champagne.

    Next Restaurant is at 953 W Fulton Market, Chicago. Information:

    https://www.nextrestaurant.com (AND they refuse to lower themselves to using Internet Explorer!)

    IF YOU LIVE IN THE CHICAGO AREA, THERE'S NO EXCUSE NOT TO GO AND HAVE A MEAL YOU'LL REMEMBER WHEN DYING

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    For some reason, Fawlty Towers "Gourmet Night" flashed in my mind.



    Whole episode here in two parts:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ivk4150p8rA
    the interaction with the kid is fantastic starting at 5:22 - they wouldn't do that today with the manic child worshipping we see in our culture now but even here you see parody that points out the folly in this.
    And the bit where he says the bit about the trough of baked beans is priceless at 7:36

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c84KVnDs_BM

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    The menu is brilliantly crafted around a “place and time” theme which changes every three months, on a quarterly basis. The place could be anywhere, and the time period could be past, present, or future.

    “Rather than the earthbound categories of Japanese, Italian or Peruvian, the food will evoke cloudier concepts: Kyoto in springtime; Palermo in 1949; Hong Kong in far-off 2036. A menu might be designed around a single day — say, the Napa Valley on Oct. 28, 1996, the day Chef Achatz started work at the "French Laundry", where he remained until 2001.”
    My T-cell count dropped just reading this; actually eating there might give you full-blown AIDS.


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    Quote Originally Posted by il ragno View Post
    My T-cell count dropped just reading this; actually eating there might give you full-blown AIDS.
    .

    "Wet" Capicola Grinders (not too much on the raw onions) are enough for everyday, but when you're my age, you'll remember the special dishes at the special places. For me, it will always be:


    Mocha Kaffee;
    Black beluga by the spoon (Leningrad, on the Baltic);
    Iced Constant Comment;
    Consumme de Escargot (Chez Cary);
    Hearts of Palm with Roquefort Vinaigrette (L'Hermitage);
    Giant scallops poached in butter with the garlic sliced so thin it melts (Ernie's);
    Sweetbreads in the olden Parisian style with Lafite Rothschild '61 (that was in '71);
    Lobster Newberg w/parmesan AND romano (Amelio's);
    All the Abalone you could eat (Inn of the Sixth Happiness - Summer of '66);
    Plain cheesecake so fresh and yet so dry you'd never think of using a spoon (Scandia); and
    Drambuie on the rocks.

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    Given the prices, you won't find any niggers eating there. That trumps all.
    Start small. Take one step.

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    Gays love obnoxious trends where restaurants are now telling you what you'll eat.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by PostingSuperstar View Post
    Gays love obnoxious trends where restaurants are now telling you what you'll eat.
    .

    "Price fixe" probably only goes back to Republican Roman times.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Monster View Post
    Given the prices, you won't find any niggers eating there. That trumps all.
    That's a thumb up right there!

    I ate at Red Lobster for Fathers Day. They had a good special.

    It was dark there. Quit teaching the smart ones to read!

    People will believe their hopes and desires and reject the truth

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    Quote Originally Posted by FIPS View Post
    .

    "Price fixe" probably only goes back to Republican Roman times.

    .
    Indeed. My favorite restaurant, a so-called "chalet-style" French Basque place, doesn't have a menu (it does offer about six meat-based entrees per evening, and you pick one of those, but otherwise, there is no menu, no choice or options of any kind - except in beverages, in the event the jugs of ice water & house wine, plus coffee, are somehow inadequate to your needs...in which case you're a fool, and will be treated as one ie., their other beverages are a total, MAJOR rip-off). The only other variation is that they serve an incredibly delicious lamb stew on six nights per week, whereas on Sundays, they serve a delicious (yet still vastly inferior) chicken-and-rice dish. Annoyingly, I always seem to wind up there on a Sunday evening.

    With that said, I think I'd rather win a dream date with Daryl *******, then eat at the place mentioned in the OP. French kissing Richard Simmons would be less geigh.
    In 1972, a black ops commando was sent to prison by a military court for a crime he didn't commit. He promptly escaped from a maximum security stockade and fled to the Ozarks underground. Today, still wanted by the Federal government, he survives as a soldier of fortune. If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find him, maybe you can hire...KRIGER!

  10. #10
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    Duck tongue, pressed squab including brains, butter-poached sturgeon in sturgeon caviar, charcuterie-inspired meats, maple syrup, sweet barley, savory mushroom soup, roasted carrots...

    .

    http://www.slate.com/articles/life/d...ery_three.html

    The humble carrot. What can you do with a carrot?

    Well, if you’re Dave Beran, executive chef of Next, an avant-garde restaurant in Chicago, you instruct farmers around the Midwest to pluck 600 pounds of carrots out of the ground upon the first frost in October. You have the farmers bury these carrots in mounds of sawdust, knowing the vegetables will dry out slightly and sweeten. Months later, you roast 120 dried out, woody carrots each day until they are soft and very sweet, their colors jewellike, their flavor bold and bright. You serve them to diners nearly unadorned on a handmade plate during an elaborate theater-like night of dining called “The Hunt,” and finally show what a carrot can be.

    Located in the industrial meatpacking district just west of Chicago’s downtown, Next is not a restaurant in a traditional sense. It is theater. Diners are required to purchase tickets—on a recent Saturday, a ticket to Next went for $125, with another $58 to $108 for drink pairings.

    Like ballet companies, operas, and symphonies, Next sells season tickets for its productions, and the dining room itself resembles a stage—a dark blank slate with a girder-like track running through its center into the kitchen. A trailer, just like a movie trailer, is shot for each menu, which radically changes every four months. As does the dining room’s music and even the plates. So far, themes have included the aforementioned Sifton-approved “Paris 1906,” “Childhood,” and “Bangkok in the Year 2032.”

    January through April's menu, with those carrots, is called “The Hunt.” Dreamed up by Beran, “The Hunt” revolves around wild game, blood, organs, nature, hunting life. Its somewhat macabre trailer closes with a hand holding a bright-red beating heart.

    “The Hunt” is essentially the opposite of Next’s previous production, “Kyoto,” a Japan-inspired, seafood-focused menu. The Baronial Old World hunting music and deer pelt table settings of today’s Next would not have made much sense just a month ago.

    “You never want a menu to be similar to the previous one,” Beran said as he spooned little balls of squab offal mixed with watercress and lemon onto circles of pastry before pinching them into packets. “I wanted to do something a lot darker.”

    For “The Hunt,” they enlisted 15 artists to make flat, rustic plates. They sourced birch bark that would be used to serve dishes, and learned how to clean and reuse it each night. They wrote the menu as a narrative, beginning in the woods, with mushrooms in glass terrarium-like boxes and smoked trout served on wood.

    Midway through the meal, servers bring lit candelabras out and begin serving elegant and rich food (think sturgeon served with its own caviar) on gold-rimmed plates. The idea, Beran said, is to invoke baroque hunting lodges: “We were thinking of old guys sitting with cognac, talking about the big hunt.”


    http://www.chicagotribune.com/featur...,6823688.story

    Kevin Pang

    Tribune reporter

    2:57 p.m. CST, November 29, 2012

    If there's some grand unifying theory stringing together Next’s 2013 menus, it’s the challenge of how a restaurant can cook under self-imposed limitations.

    Consider the candidates from the Next brainchild in the running: 1700s Charleston (inspired after a conversation with South Carolinian chef Sean Brock). Turn-of-the-20th century New Orleans. A menu dubbed “The Signatures,” showcasing the signature dishes of 15 of the world’s best-known restaurants (say, "Oysters and Pearls" from The French Laundry, or Robuchon potatoes).

    But rather than food of a time or place (Sicily, Kyoto) or something more abstract and fanciful (Childhood), the three menus of Next’s 2013 season have the feel of conceptual boxes Dave Beran, Grant Achatz & Co. place themselves into, then ask: "How do we make good food given these parameters?”

    "The cornerstone of creativity is a problem," Achatz said. "And solving the problem produces creativity."

    One of the challenges with "The Hunt" menu, scheduled to debut the second week of January, will be in its ingredient sourcing — expect to see bear jerky and venison heart tartare, for example. Some terms Beran kept referring to in describing the concept: Outdoors, survival, foraging, "Little House on the Prairie," opulent cognac-swilling sport hunters.

    When the menu turns again in May, the restaurant will present an all-vegan tasting. I asked Beran whether serving just vegetables would turn off the meat-eating majority, and more importantly, whether they’d be willing to pay $200-plus without a slice of wagyu or foie gras. Beran suggested the term "vegan" traditionally conjures up tofu burgers and raw lasagna. "Don’t think of fake proteins, think of actual vegetables,” he said. Seasonality and ingredients will be the main drivers.

    Said Achatz: "The guy who goes to Gibsons and eats a Porterhouse steak and thinks vegetarian cuisine is unsatisfying, I think those people will be very surprised. Knowing the techniques we can employ to manipulate vegetables, we can even, to a point, make it taste like meat."

    Debuting at Next in September 2013: A menu dictated by the rules of the Bocuse d’Or cooking competition. In many ways the Bocuse d’Or is Iron Chef meets the Olympics: The same proteins are assigned to each of the 24 international teams competing (Irish beef, turbot and European blue lobster in the 2013 competition), who then have five hours and 35 minutes to present 14 plates and three garnishes (one of the garnishes must represent the national team’s heritage). The rules are all highly regimented and confoundingly precise.

    How Next will translate the platter-style presentation of the Bocuse d’Or into a dining experience remains to be seen (mousselines and gelees, certainly), but Achatz said he's already thinking about diner interactivity, such as letting them vote on the proteins, in the spirit of competition. Achatz himself is a coach for the 2013 Team U.S.A.

    Said Dave Beran, the chef tasked with its day-to-day execution: "My first thought [in deciding the menus] is it has to be unpredictable moving into next year. It has to be a complete opposite of what we’ve been doing.”

    So the transformation from the delicate, seafood-prominence of its current Kyoto menu to one heavy on blood, game and aggressive flavors is fitting.

    Also noteworthy: Sometime this spring, Next will be expanding to seven days a week, said partner Nick Kokonas (Plan is for Alinea and The Aviary to go everyday also). The new Monday and Tuesday seatings will be priced similarly to mid-week tickets, which is to say, less than what you’d pay for a premium Saturday timeslot.

    Chef Grant Achatz poses after his Who's Who of Food & Beverage in America induction during the James Beard Foundation Awards, Monday, May 7, 2012, in New York.

    Though Next is a favorite of foodies, it has been snubbed two years in a row by Michelin.

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