It was startling -- but in a good way -- when the newly re-imagined restaurant at Lounge ON20 was cited by Gayot as one of the Top-10 restaurants in the U.S. featuring molecular gastronomy cooking techniques. Startling because the hot new restaurant's kitchen, headed by executive chef Pajo Bruich, is in some pretty amazing company. Alinea and WD-50 are ranked on another list -- S. Pellegrino's -- as two of the best 50 restaurants in the world. I ate at WD-50 (in New York City) last September, and the meal was a tour de force of creative cooking, including a deconstructed eggs Benedict I'll remember for years to come.
What's all the fuss about locally? Just check out the cheese and charcuterie plate at Lounge ON20 (pictured above). It's a thing of beauty, complete with plenty of avant garde and classical technique. I contacted Bruich after running across this photo (again, it was Facebook that got me!).
I contacted Bruich and asked him to tell me what we're looking at. He says the plate is available by special request for $20 and includes the following: pate de campagne cooked sous vide, guanciale lasso, lard, andouille sausage, porchetta stackers, winchester super aged Gouda, house made ricotta, fiscalini aged cheddar, crater lake blue cheese, chevre-fig cheesecake and a whole lot of house made extras! Everything done in house, all of it, the bread, jams sauces.... served with fleur de sel crackers by (pastry chef) Elaine (Baker)
Congratulations to the Lounge ON20 crew, including chef de cuisine Mike Ward, for the fine work on this plate and for the national recognition.