For my birthday I was lucky enough to be taken to wd~50, a restaurant that has been on my to-eat list. Â We all know about Wylie DufresneÂ and how he’s changed the food scene with molecular gastronomy earning himself Best Chef in NY for six years (James Beard Award). Â Being that they recently changed their menu, I was lucky to taste their new dishes!
Sesame “bread” was provided for the table. Â Surprisingly, this provided a great savory palette cleanser in between each course.
TheÂ Mackerel Nigiri with salsify, seaweed, and sesame started us off. Â The mackerel was very fresh and smooth. Â The rice was kind of warm when served, which caught me a bit off guard, but I enjoyed it as a first course. Â Light and fresh.
Lobster roe served with charred lemon, green grape, and coriander-brown butter was enjoyable and all the flavors worked together. Â The grape provided a nice sweetness to the dish, and charred lemon added a nice bit of texture.
This was one of the best dishes of the night – pho gras with foie gras, noodles, and mint leaves. Â The fois gras melted into the broth, which was light and nicely salted. Â The noodles seemed like it was cooked for slightly too long, but I really enjoyed the interpretation of pho.
Covered in carrots and “peas” (which is actually something else covered in pea powder) is amaro yolk with chicken confit. Â The presentation was interesting but I personally was hoping the yolk would be runny and it wasn’t.
Another highlight of the meal was the veal briskey with za’atar, plum, and mustard. Â The thinly sliced veal was nicely flavored with the sauce. Â The plum slices added a nice texture to the veal and all the flavors blended well together.
Crab toast with saffron, kaffir-yogurt, and arareÂ was pleasant and had a good amount of crab meat on it.
The turbot with black licorice-pil pil, fried green tomato, and fennel was nicely cooked though I mainly enjoyed the fried tomato. The turbot definitely had the texture on the raw side, but nothing wrong with that!
Lamb sweetbreads served with nasturtium-buttermilk, zucchini, and pistachio. For some, sweetbreads could be hard to stomach but this dish made it a lot easier. Â I felt like the texture of the zucchini definitely helped and the sweetbread was flavored nicely.
Their root beer ribs with rye spaetzle and apricot was nicely cooked – tender and juicy paired with the apricot sauce helped make these ribs sweet.
I really enjoyed the palette cleanser -Â Jasmine, cucumber, honeydew, and chartreuse. Â It totally did its job after going through all the savory dishes; it gave my senses a blast of refreshment!
The first dessert was yuzu milk ice with hazelnut, rhubarb, and basil. Â What is milk ice? Â I think it’s basically puffed up ice cream as you can see from the white sponge-like blob in the middle of the picture. Â It didn’t have a sponge-like texture once I ate it, but it was more like it “melted” in my mouth.
This was one of the most impressive dishes of the night for me. Â Their version of the s’mores with bitter cocoa, meringue, and black currant was delicious. Â The “marshmallow” on top is actually marshmallow ice cream that’s in the shape of marshmallow! Â GENIUS. Â It was perfectly bitter and sweet, plus the marshmallow helped cut any intense chocolate-y goodness.
FINALLY, the last bite is the white chocolate covered with freeze-dried raspberries andÂ gjetostÂ in the center. Â Delicious!
WD~50 was a great adventure into the world of molecular gastronomy. Â Dishes were familiar enough for you to feel comfortable, but at the same time, each dish was innovative in the changing the familiar forms of the ingredients within the dish. Â I really enjoyed my time there since the waitstaff were informative and casual, food was good and interesting, and I got a tour around the kitchen!
50 Clinton Street, New York, NY
(212) 477-2900Â â€Ž