Atera, New York City, 5/18/18

entrance
entrance

Atera is made up of 12 seats at a u-shaped bar surrounding an open kitchen.  There is an additional table in the back for a group of 6.  Chef Ronny Emborg was in the kitchen with several other chefs but most of the interaction is with the service staff who are a delightful bunch.  The chefs presented and described the dishes but the kitchen doesn’t have much banter.   Lots of good smells greet you when you enter the room as well as old rock music and lowered lighting.  Wood walls and ceiling are matched with dark curtains – all of which help dampen sound – give the room a cozy yet elegant feel.  There is very little noise in the room and conversations tended to be hushed and private throughout the evening.   It is a surprise tasting menu only, a copy of which is given to you when you leave.   Two seatings are offered every night at this 2 star Michelin restaurant which nicely scales the portion sizes of the 18 course menu.  

interior
interior
chef
Chef Ronny Emborg looks over the dining room
extra guest table
extra guest table

 

They nicely start you with a warm moist towel and many of the first bites are hand food.

moist hand towels
moist hand towels
sparkler
sparkler
Frankie posed with the flowers
Frankie posed with the flowers

 

Lime snow was combined with warm juniper foam for a refreshing drink with a fun mix of temperatures and textures.

Lime/Juniper
Lime/Juniper
from the top
from the top

 

Razor Clam, Leek, and Nori was a seaweed tart with a wheat crust topped with razor clam pieces. It was extremely fresh tasting and a work of art.  The flavors were mild but nice.

Razor clam/ Leek, Nori
Razor clam/ Leek, Nori
closer
closer

 

Oyster, Yusu and Shallot was a Washington oyster in the shell with olive oil.  The seasoning brought out the best of the sweet bright oyster. It was excellent.

Oyster/Yuzu, Shallot
Oyster/Yuzu, Shallot
closer
closer
Chef
Chef Emborg works with other staff
Rachael and Frankie
Rachael and Frankie

 

Tuna, Waffle and Sunchoke was a summer truffle on a warm tasty waffle.  The tuna was fairly mild and blended great with truffle.   Another artfully assembled piece that also tasted great.

Tuna/Waffle, Sunchoke
Tuna/Waffle, Sunchoke
closer
closer
inside
inside
wine
wine

 

Golden Osetra Caviar,  Pistachio and IPA was creme fraiche with pistachio ice cream and caviar.  An inspired combination that was totally tasty.   Every combination of ingredients worked.

Golden Osetra Caviar/Pistachio, IPA
Golden Osetra Caviar/Pistachio, IPA
closer
closer
Frankie watched the kitchen action
Frankie watched the kitchen action

 

King Crab, Tomato and Rose Hip cream was peeled multi-color small tomatoes with rose hip cream, dill broth and mild sweet crab shreds.  The red tomatoes were better tasting than the yellow ones but both were fine.  The crab had a great texture to add to the dish, but I would have added a touch of salt to bring out the extremely fresh flavors more.

King Crab/ Tomato, Rose Hip
King Crab/ Tomato, Rose Hip
closer
closer
closer
closer
chilling glass
chilling glass (a bit of liquid nitrogen is used to swirl around the glass)

 

Squid, Sugar Snap Pea and White Miso was spaghetti shaped squid pieces with a confit egg and snap peas in a white miso sauce.   The squid strips were very tender and the pea shoots were filled with fresh pea flavor.  The sauce brought out the best in all the ingredients and the egg added a bit of richness to it.  This was a really good one.

Squid/ Sugar Snap Pea, White Miso
Squid/ Sugar Snap Pea, White Miso
closer
closer
stirred
stirred
Mike and Frankie
Mike and Frankie

 

Halibut, Cauliflower and Brown Butter was perfectly cooked halibut with a ginger butter sauce and topped with cauliflower and pea tendrils.  Some cauliflower purée was beside the moist fish.  The sauce was nicely rich and worked great with the fish and purée.  It was a lovely combination of flavors and textures.

preparing halibut
preparing halibut
final touch
final touch
Halibut/ Cauliflower, Brown Butter
Halibut/ Cauliflower, Brown Butter
closer
closer

 

Whole wheat bread and butter was next.  The butter was topped with bits of potato chips and the sour dough bread was house made and served warm.  Both were yummy.  The fun crunch on the butter was novel and tasty.  The bread was lighter than the look would suggest with a less dense interior.

Whole Wheat Baton
Whole Wheat Baton
bread
bread
butter
butter
wine
wine
Sommelier Jordon and Frankie
Sommelier Jordon and Frankie

 

White Asparagus, Truffle and Walnut was white asparagus pieces topped with an Austrian trumpet mushroom, truffles and served aside a sabayon sauce.  A bit of truffle oil was in the sauce which really brought out the truffle flavor.  A very rich, nice dish that didn’t achieve the richness through butter.

White Aspargus/ Truffle, Walnut
White Aspargus/ Truffle, Walnut
closer
closer

 

Oxtail, Cabbage and Finger Lime was a cabbage leaf cut in a round and folded like a taco then filled with well done and shredded oxtail, chervil and pickled finger lime.  Mustard greens garnished the “taco”  and the bits of lime made a little pop when you got a piece.  The meat was tender and not at all dry.  It was good and very savory.

Oxtail/ Cabbage, Finger Lime
Oxtail/ Cabbage, Finger Lime
closer
closer
peak inside
peak inside
Frankie found a plant
Frankie found a plant

 

Duck, Pear, Cranberry and Hazelnut used dry aged Long Island duck breast.  The sauce was made from duck bits and reduced to an intense, sticky and thick consistency.  Alongside was a piece of pear poached in wine and a sorrel leaf.  The nicely rare duck was excellent with not a hint of liver taste.    It was another good one.

duck roast
duck roast
making the plate
making the plate
ready
ready
Duck/ Pear, Cranberry, Hazelnut
Duck/ Pear, Cranberry, Hazelnut

 

closer
closer
Frankie checked it out
Frankie checked it out

 

Strawberry, Coconut and Ginger was in 2 dishes.  The lovely piece of strawberry was served in an excellent ginger sauce – a wonderful combination of flavors.  The coconut was topped with crisp milk slices and coconut sticks.  The milk crisps were really fun and added a good textural contrast.  All the ingredients here were good alone and also good when mixed into any number of combinations.

Strawberry/ Coconut, Ginger
Strawberry/ Coconut, Ginger
closer
closer
closer
closer
another angle
another angle
Frankie posed with the bathroom flowers
Frankie posed with the bathroom flowers

 

 

Meyer Lemon, Skyr and Thyme were served in an orange half.  The Skyr is yogurt like and the Meyer lemon combined with some jelly like tapioca.  It was in several layers that all were really yummy.  I loved all the textures in the sweet fruit and silky custard.  Everything was really intensely flavored and perfectly balanced.  A winner.

assembling dessert
assembling dessert
many layers
many layers
Meyer Lemon / Skyr, Thyme
Meyer Lemon / Skyr, Thyme
closer
closer
inside
inside

 

A flurry of final treats finished the meal.   White Sturgeon Caviar and Dulce De Leche was really different and quite good.  Lemongrass and Rhubarb was a custard like bit in a sweet rhubarb sauce.  Sweet and creamy – a perfect combination.  Red Miso Caramel was milk chocolate strips filled with miso caramel.  A total yum here.  Sorghum and Peanut was popped sorghum and white chocolate in a messy delight to eat.

Frankie and the final treats
Frankie and the final treats
White Sturgeon Caviar / Dulce De Leche
White Sturgeon Caviar / Dulce De Leche
Lemongrass / Rhubarb
Lemongrass / Rhubarb
Red Miso Caramel
Red Miso Caramel
from the side
from the side
from the side
from the side
Sorghum / Peanut
Sorghum / Peanut
inside
inside
IMG_0344
menu and presentation folder
Maitre D' Matthew Abbick and Frankie with a photo bomb by Rachael
Maitre D’ Matthew Abbick and Frankie with a photo bomb by Rachael

 

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