Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City
Elizabeth Street has been flooded with Australian restaurants for quite a few years. Some might even call this stretch “Little Australia.” But up until recently, the street has been lacking the flavors of Australia’s neighbor New Zealand.
We don’t have nearly as much Kiwi food in the city, but after trying the trendy and refined plates at The Musket Room, I’m realizing we need a lot more. Most folks from New Zealand would recognize certain ingredients here, but Chef Matt Lambert is deconstructing many dishes and bringing a fresh perspective.
The menu features lots of berries, seafood, and wild game. And a tempting pavlova at the end of the meal, which we successfully resisted. We’ll have to come back for the classic dessert.
Deer is not something you often see on menus in this country. Perhaps the more politely named venison, but red deer sounds quite primal. But the masterfully cooked meat medallions were tender and meaty with just a hint of gamines. Even more exciting was the accompanied “flavors of gin.”
The meat was not cooked with gin, but instead the plate featured components that represented the minerally and floral notes of the spirit. Next to the deer, we were served caramelized fennel, celery root pureé, and dollops of juniper mousse. A puddle of licorice jus brought the dish together. Amazingly, each of the accompaniments were indeed reminiscent of the flavor of gin. It was a playful, light, and unique presentation.
Thanks to this great addition of New Zealand cuisine, Elizabeth Street shoould probably be re-named “Little Oeania”. We just need a Papa New Guinea restaurant to the seal the deal.
|THE MUSKET ROOM|
|265 Elizabeth Street (between East Houston and Prince Street),