The New York Post today runs a story contemplating the price of an $18 carrot entree at Northern Spy Food Company, an ambitious American restaurant in Manhattan’s East Village. Here’s what the authors write:
“Even Bugs Bunny would balk. This is what New York dining has come to — $18 for an entree of three roasted carrots…the nouveau rabbit food costs more than a 6-ounce filet mignon at the Old Homestead Steakhouse in the Meatpacking District.”
Alright. Let’s take this one step at a time. First of all, if we’re comparing the price of an expertly sourced, prepped, hay-roasted vegetable to the price of a piece of meat that some guy threw over the broiler at a Meatpacking District restaurant that rarely holds court in contemporary culinary conversations, then we might as well declare New American dining to be dead and restrict our feeding to a Beefsteak Party at the local Knights of Columbus.
Second of all, where were all the complaints when The NoMad was charging $20 for carrots or $24 for asparagus? Probably didn’t hear many gripes because those preparations were pretty spectacular. And where were the tirades against the Michelin-starred Tulsi, where five of the seven vegetarian entrees are $18 or more? Must one balk at the $295 vegetable tasting at the three Michelin-starred Per Se?
That’s all another way of saying this conversation is getting a bit silly. For those who’d like to read more about the price of good greens and the like, you might consider the comments of David Kinch (the chef at Manresa in Los Gatos) on how “it’s not cheaper to cook vegetables.” We’d also point you towards our interview with Daniel Patterson of COI, in which he had some clever things to say about the price of forest lichens.
If lichens are your sort of thing. Which we’re gonna say might not be the case.