Zagat/NY restaurants Break 21st Century Routine with 19th Century Dinner Series


Gastronomically time travel with and sixteen top New York restaurants including Daniel, Per Se, Jean Georges and Blue Hill at Stone Barns as they team up to present the “Vintage Dinner Series” in which each of the restaurants will present a menu inspired by the 19th century. A portion of the proceeds from each of the evenings will go to a charity of the chef’s choice. Zagat said they researched period cuisine at the New York Public Library and the New-York Historical Society and consulted suppliers such as Stanley Lobel of Lobel’s Butcher Shop and Dorian Mecir of Dorian’s Seafood Market. He came up with a list of about 100 ingredients, including fish, meats and poultry that were commonly used at the time, but aren’t normally seen on contemporary menus. Cocktail mavens David Wondrich, Steven Olson, and Dale DeGroff of Beverage Alcohol Resource provided information on 19-century cocktails. Zagat added that “each chef is doing his own version of a 19th-century menu: some are faithful recreations, and some are more fanciful.” Prices for the menus range from $150 at Ouest to $575 at Per Se (including wine.) Seats will also be available through eBay. The series starts January 12 at Café des Artistes, which will cook the 6-course feast from the movie “Babette’s Feast,” and ends March 25 at Aureole. Each restaurant in the series offers the 19th century meal only one night, and all seating is limited (the February 3 event at Daniel plates only 80 people). As an example of what to expect, Thomas Keller (Per Se) has pointed out that 19th century dining was an era where food was more banquet-style, with robust quantities washed down by an abundance of vino-with an ambiance to match. Reservations for the dinners open today, and diners should go through the individual restaurants to secure a table. The prix fixe dinners will include alcohol, tax, and tip, and will be priced on par with normal prix fixe menus at those restaurants.

Via Zagat