In the fat-cats’ continuous pursuit of more, we present for your consideration: the never-ending meal.
The WSJ reports that NYC eateries are upping their course game to an absurd degree — sometimes offering a tasting menu of more than 20 courses.
The history of multi-course meals is vast, starting with the ancient Romans. Culinary experts explain, “New York chefs are now running with a trend that has its roots in the work of the influential Spanish chef Ferran Adrià, whose now-closed El Bulli was famous for serving meals with as many as 50 courses.” Thomas Keller’s Per Se began with a 9-course tasting menu, and then Brooklyn Fare joined, nearly doubling down, so to speak, offering 15. In an effort to make both wallets and stomachs burst, Murray Hill eatery O Ya is now producing a 24-course meal spanning 4 hours and costing $245, excluding tips and tax.
But chefs assure that, although the number of items in a meal may be long, quantities are kept small so diners may have an comfortable eating experience.
While one might think patrons would get figuratively fed up with being literally fed up, it appears many diners are hungry for more. Area eateries offering extensive tasting menus are booked solid and wait lists abound.
Buo Zhang, a 30-year-old Manhattan resident, who has chowed down at several multi-course restaurants, is a big fan. “Just like artists sculpt or paint, these chefs do something similar, but they do it with food,” Zhang, who fasts prior to her reservation, told the WSJ.
Still, others are ready to throw down their napkins. David Rosengarten, a former Food Network personality who now edits a culinary newsletter, cites a meal at a New York restaurant that stretched into 6 hours, with more than 20 courses, saying.“We just started to crumble in our seats.”