12/03/2012 09:42:00 AM

The Best Thing We Ate This Weekend: A La Carte at EMP

So you want to try some of Daniel Humm's fare at his famed Eleven Madison Park, but you don't want to spring for the full $195 tasting. You can't order a la carte in the dining room, but you can in the lounge. We got there around 7:30 PM on a Saturday and found that there was plenty of space available, even a few proper tables. With the restaurant so focused on promoting it's new NYC-themed tasting, they haven't developed an a la carte scene Le Bernardin and Per Se in their recently revamped bar areas. We enjoyed a few cocktails - our favorite was the hangover-busting Cosa Nostra, spiked with Fernet Branca, Zucca, Nardini Amarao, vermouth, ginger and lime (and were pleased to see that the libations were priced at $16 a piece, when countless less fancy haunts are pushing the $20 mark).

The selection of dishes includes a rotation of items that are included in the regular tasting. There's the famous duck (which is no longer carved table side, but is still just as tasty) and a great rib eye served with mushrooms and dandelion greens. After drinks and plenty of cocktails our party of two was were able to get out of there for around $200. Pricey, yes, but well under what we would have spent for the regular selection, and worth every penny.

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