Easy question: Would you prefer to dine at Corton, one of New York’s most envelope-pushing French restaurants, and order an intruging bottle of Champagne, say, Duc de Romet for $80? Or would you rather go to Gaonnuri, the subject of my one-star Bloomberg News review, where the cheapest Champagne, a very un-intriguing bottle of Moet & Chandon, is $160? That’s a 300% markup over the $40 retail price at Astor Wines.*
One interesting note: While we were investigating the price increases at Jean Georges, a spokesperson for the restaurant mentioned that it’s “still the lowest priced three star Michelin and four star New York Times prix-fixe in NYC.”
Is that an accurate statement?
Now that The Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare has published its wine list, all but two of New York’s top Michelin-rated restaurants have their selection of vino available to peruse online. Le Bernardin and Jean Georges are the two holdouts. We’re hoping they’ll join the club soon, especially since wine can cost as much as (or more than) dinner at these excellent, high-end venues.
Think of it this way: If Le Bernardin’s $190 tasting menu is unlikely to be an “impulse purchase,” then a $190 bottle of bubbly at that restaurant is also unlikely to be an impromptu decision. High-end wine, like high-end food, is something you plan in advance. It requires thought. As such, here are the wine lists for New York’s three Michelin-starred restaurants. Minus two.
Hey Folks, here’s a JOINT POST with our sister site, The Bad Deal, about the importance of menu transparency in the mobile world. Enjoy!
The iPhone was born in 2007. Paul Bocuse was born in 1926. And because Bocuse is an adaptable guy, not to mention a reasonably famous chef with a global culinary competition named after him (The Bocuse D’Or), one can view the website for his three-Michelin starred Lyons restaurant on the iPhone or iPad without too much hassle. It’s all quite convenient.
Thomas Keller, the great American chef who literally wrote the go-to book on modern sous-vide techniques, and who’s the president of The Bocuse D’Or USA foundation (see above), does not have iPhone compatible websites at his two high-end restaurants, Per Se and The French Laundry, a five years after the debut of the iPhone. It’s all quite inconvenient.
Yes, yes, Chef Keller does have a pretty cool iPad wine app, which we’ll discuss in a little bit. And Keller, of course, isn’t alone in all this.
Here’s a list of some of the world’s great chefs and restaurants, some of the world’s most famous restaurants, one very good neighborhood restaurant, and STK, none of which appear to have iOS-friendly sites. Try out the links below on your iPhone or iPad and see what happens. It ain’t pretty.
- Masa & Bar Masa
- Per Se
- The French Laundry
- The Fat Duck (click on “menu” and Flash icon pops up)
- Jean Georges
- Del Posto
- Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester
- Pierre Gagnaire
- Le Cirque
- The Brooklyn Star (I like this place)
- STK (whatever)
Earlier today The Price Hike reported that Eleven Madison Park has started levying cancellation fees for no-shows and other delinquents. Here’s what EMP and the rest of New York’s high-end dining community will charge if you don’t cancel with the appropriate prior notice:
NOTE: Most good restaurants don’t actually charge these cancellation fees if they find someone to take your place. The purpose of these fines is to incentivize you to show up to the restaurant when you said you would, and so that if you don’t, the restaurant doesn’t lose too much revenue.
Writes Bloomberg critic and Price Hike/Bad Deal editor Ryan Sutton (that’s me) in his year-end roundup of New York’s best new(ish) restaurants. Romera, of course, still offers its $245 menu, which after optional 20% tip comes to $294, a dollar less than Per Se’s $295 service-included menu. That’s BOLD.