Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare, New York City, 5/11/21

exterior of building

We were last at The Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare in May of 2019 and not much has changed in the physical place but Covid 19 has made spacing between guests larger (50% capacity).  Brooklyn Fare is the grocery that is the front of the building and the Chef’s Table is in the rear.  Chef César Ramirez was in the kitchen and doing much of the plating of courses.  It is a tasting menu only with seats around a large C-shaped wood counter and booth seating around the perimeter.  The open kitchen is the center of the well lit room with older rock music in the background.  Wine pairings are available or bottles can be individually purchased.  There are a lot of staff and all are very friendly with guests but Ramirez is more about cooking than visiting with diners.  The beautifully presented luxury foods are filled with flavor and texture, but many of the courses were quite similar to what we had 2 years ago.

counter
interior
interior
kitchen
counter set up

 

Everyone starts with a moist cloth to wipe their hands which will be used for the first several courses.   Blue fin tuna tartar was piled high with Beluga cream caviar and topped with mustard blooms in an ultra thin crust.  This was a one bite option, probably because the crust was so delicate, but huge for most.  Once in the mouth was filled with wonderful flavors of delicious caviar and tuna.

wet cloth
Caviar
closer
Frankie watched the action

 

In-house smoked salmon was chunked and topped with trout roe and cilantro sprouts in another thin pastry.  Another one bite option and this one was filled with the pop of the larger trout roe and a hint of cilantro.  A smoked essence was definitely there but mild for a perfect blend of flavors.  The super thin crisp crust added another textural element to this fabulous bite.

Salmon
closer
white wine
red wine

 

Aji, or Japanese horse mackerel  was topped with crispy kelp on a cracker of nori.  In between was a sauce of wasabi and other elements that brought the two together perfectly and gave it a little kick.  The fish was cooked simply by touching the skin with white hot charcoal, so it was really lightly seared.  An amazing combination of textures and flavors for terrific end result.

Aji
closer
inside

 

Uni, Hokkaido sea urchin from Japan was on a toasted brioche and topped with a black truffle.  The soft uni contrasted nicely with the crisp brioche and all was enhanced with the truffle flavor.  This great combination of loveliness must be a signature dish for the chef.

Uni
closer
turned

 

Chiba Akamutsu Red sea perch from Japan was was 2 pieces of raw filet floating on the most amazing sauce.  Some of the sauce was to be eaten with each bite which yielded not a lot of textural contrast but simply coated your tastebuds with flavor.

Chiba Akamutsu
closer
Frankie watched the action

 

Custard with foie gras, truffle and ramps was a delicious combination with a mild flavor but quite savory.  It was a smaller cup than last visit but a perfect amount to enjoy.  Less overwhelming than the previous courses but fine overall.

Custard
closer

 

Black cod from British Colombia was with razor clams, white asparagus and maitake mushrooms in a buttery sauce.  The buttery fish worked well with the chewy clams and bite of the asparagus and mushrooms.  A terrific grouping of flavors with not one being dominant just all good.

Black Cod
closer
white hot coals

 

Langoustine was from Norway and covered with a thin sheet of Ibérico ham and plated with a muscle and morel stuffed with langoustine.  This was an amazing bowl of fun and flavor all surrounded by a butter sauce.  Great.

Langoustine
closer
turned
Frankie watched them assemble plates

 

Koshihikari Rice was covered with Rouget or Red Mullet.  Also in the dish was baby octopus, abalone and a bit of roe.  The abalone and octopus were in bits that blended in with the rice that gave the dish a nice chewiness.  Not as rich as the last course but equally tasty.

Koshihikari Rice
closer

 

Lamb was served with spring vegetables.  Pea shoots, ramps, zucchini and black trumpet mushrooms were among the sides to the black truffle wrapped piece of lamb.  The lamb was beautifully rare with a small fat cap within the wrap.  The well flavored sauce brought out the best in the various vegetables and was very good with the lamb too.

Lamb
closer
Frankie was exhausted

 

Wagyu was a slice of Japanese A5 on some Chinese broccoli with a red wine reduction/mustard sauce.  The buttery beef was predictably fine but I preferred it without too much of the sauce which covered its lovely taste.  Delicious whichever way you chose to eat it.

Wagyu
closer
turned

 

Sorbet was on a bowl of wild strawberries from Spain.  Some champagne gelée added to the sweetness.  Fresh and lovely, this was a great transition into sweet courses.

Sorbet
closer

 

Frozen Sobacha (buckwheat tea) Soufflé must be another signature as it was the same as last visit.  The large cold soufflé  was dusted with buckwheat and had some crispy balls around the bottom.  This one had a very mildly sweet flavor.

Frozen Sobacha Soufflé
turned
Frankie helped finish it

 

Coconut Passion Fruit Cake was the next puffy white dessert.   The passion fruit was in the center of the collection of balls.  The passion fruit was tart and the puffy coconut was the sweet.  A good combination but not great.

Coconut Passion Fruit Cake
closer
inside

 

Petit Fours were on a multi level tray and included dulce de leche filled cream puffs that were crispy, creamy and yummy.  Next down were  white chocolate raspberry that were filled with raspberry goo.  They had been refrigerated but the raspberry filling overwhelmed any other part of the candy.  Not my favorite.  On the bottom rungs were salted caramels which were on a pastry shell and were very good.

Petit Fours
Dulce De Leche
inside
White Chocolate Raspberry
inside
Salted Caramel
inside

 

Upon leaving and with your bill you get a copy of the evening’s menu.

Frankie shared the menu

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