Friday, March 26, 2010

wd-50 (New York, NY)

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Know who Chef Wylie Dufresne is? This is his restaurant. JS and I actually managed to do enough planning during our trip to NY to make a reservation at wd-50.


It was so hot and humid in New York that we were already very much wilted and droopy when we arrived at the restaurant.

bathroom doors

I like how they "hide" their bathroom doors. =)

Actually, they only had the toilets inside rooms, while the sinks were outside. A nice move, since sometimes I just want to wash my hands and not have to deal with nasty bathroom door handles.

hand sinks

I really like the tiles by the hand sinks. Pretty.

Now on to the food!

Crisp "Flatbread" with Sesame Seeds

I applaud the professional front-of-house staff at wd-50 as they served JS and I, two very strange customers indeed.

Here we were, looking like we were about to die, and really, just not acting the way the rest of their diners were. ;)

Actually, I think by this time JS and I were experiencing "stomach fatigue." We will soon illustrate what and how we had been eating during the trip. (See our NYC Eating Extravaganza here. Insane.)

But also, the heat and humidity and walking around Chinatown before arriving at wd-50 did not help. We were both very lethargic and felt very heavy and slow.

To combat this, we ordered tea.


We both ordered tea upon receiving our starters. Strange by "normal" standards, I guess. But we were hoping that the tea will help revive our stomachs, in much the same way as drinking tea is supposed to help in digestion of oily foods during dim sum.

With the stomach fatigue and all, we didn't feel it was wise to order the chef's tasting menu and its numerous, numerous dishes. So, we decided to order à la carte.


Eggs Benedict
Egg yolk, Canadian bacon, and hollandaise sauce inside dough that has been battered and fried.

Canadian bacon wedged on egg yolk.

Hollandaise sauce oozing out of its fried dough casing.

Shrimp and Zucchini Noodles, Chamomile Yogurt, Mushrooms.
The "noodles" were made with shrimp. The chamomile yogurt was interesting.


Pork Loin, Fried Caraway Mashed Potato, Coconut Dijon.

There were more slices of pork in there. See. Those fried balls are caraway mashed potato fried balls.

The pork was very nicely cooked. However, JS doesn't recall the flavor combinations of coconut-dijon and the caraway-potato very fondly at all.

Duck Breast, Worcestershire Spaetzle, Parsnip or Turnips.

This is the STRANGEST plating I have ever seen! Those turnips/parsnips (I can't remember which) dipped in green sauce look like teeth! Shark's teeth. So, so strange.

Those brown things hiding behind the duck, beside the greens, are Worcestershire spaetzle. Once again, the meat was nicely cooked.

We couldn't finish our main dishes, so we had them packed up to take home. Actually, both dishes had quite a substantial amount of meat in them.

(As witnessed here, we ate the pork and duck meat alongside our Katz's pastrami sandwiches in the plane.)

But, soldiering on, we ordered desserts!


Hazelnut Coconut Tarte, Chicory Foam.

This was not bad at all. I'm a sucker for hazelnut.

Pistachio Cake, Pistachio Tuile Wrapping, Honeydew Ice Cream, Chartreuse Foam, Anglaise Sauce.

I liked the color scheme.

I'm not too sure about the pistachio and honeydew pairing.

But the cake itself was not bad.

To end our meal, we received these truffle-looking things. I mean, truffles from the ground, not the chocolates. ;)

These cookie crumb balls were filled with condensed milk ice cream! So I had to eat them right there and then. We were obscenely full by this time (seeing as we were already slightly full before dinner began).

All in all, the meal was "OK". There were some misses along the way in terms of flavors, but the execution was top-notch. I was left thinking if we should have ordered the tasting menu instead, as the dishes there seemed more interesting. The table beside us certainly seemed to be enjoying their tasting menu immensely.

JS and I were not wholly satisfied with our meal, but I'll be willing to visit the restaurant one more time and try their tasting menu. I figure we should give wd-50 the benefit of the doubt since we were feeling oh-so-very-less than stellar when we dined here (what with the insane way we've been eating and all).

New York, NY
Visited in August 2009

We ate all the food below -- and more -- in 4 days! Insane. See how: NYC Eating Extravaganza (August 2009)

[eatingclub] vancouver in New York
Rice to Riches
Shake Shack
Grom Gelato
Bleecker Street Pizza
New York Burger Co.
Artichoke Basille's Pizza
Katz's Deli
Lombardi's Pizza
Hummus Place
Max Brenner, Chocolate by the Bald Man
Momofuku Ssäm Bar
Amy Ruth's
Taïm Falafel and Smoothie Bar
A Tale of Two Dogs: Gray's Papaya & Papaya King

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  1. That looks...different! (lack of a better word).

    I'm a sucker for hazelnut too - not a gigantuan fan of coconut, though I'm sure my love for hazelnut would win in that battle.

    Hmm. Now I want to try my hand at making those ice cream cake balls!

  2. This is so amazing! What was the damage? Funny name for a restaurant. Do you know the story behind that name?

  3. Jessica:
    Those ice cream balls were pretty good, haha.

    Ben & Suanne:
    Oh, I don't remember... Haha. But, looking at their current pricing, I think it's along the lines of $150, almost $200 with the tea and tips and all. That's what JS is saying. Doesn't seem like much when you look at it, though, eh? Hehe. ;D

  4. That is, the food doesn't seem like all that when you look at it. =)

  5. I'm sorry the meal couldn't have been better-tasting. Ah well, it's all about the experience, I guess. What do the French say? Chacun à son goût?
    I walked outside it, but fully aware of the at least $50 I would pay (much less if I only have dessert, as usual), I skipped it.

  6. I can't believe the amount of eating you two have done on this trip! Hehe. Every time I see the WD-50, I think of that spray oil. :P

  7. Manggy:
    I don't know if it was the food or us that was the problem. So yeah, I think if I go back (who knows when I'll get the chance again!), it would be to do the tasting menu.

    Wandering Chopsticks:
    Haha, yeah, it's a little unfortunate, the name, because I do think of that spray oil as well!


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