A birthday dinner that was supposed to happen in early April, then moved to May, then July was well worth the wait. At demi, helmed by James Beard award-winning chef Gavin Kaysen, I asked my server, “have you ever had a guest weep because a course was so good?” The reply was affirmative. Yep. Flavors can bring a person to tears of gratefulness.
The diminutive demi, with just 20 counter seats at full capacity pre-COVID, was a finalist for a James Beard Best New Restaurant 2020. The winner will remain ever a secret, as it was announced in late August that the award, among others, would not be presented due to changes at the Beard Foundation.
Compressed honeydew with black lime salt accompanied by (not shown) wheatgrass broth
Boules wheat cavatelli with duck confi t, makrut lime & corn mousse, shiso, lemongrass, lovage and puffed corn
Sunfl ower rye toast with fresh ricotta and marinated summer squash, lemon
Au bon canard foie gras terrine with strawberry gelée, Sicilian pistachio, sumac, sorrel, and accompanied by buckwheat naan
Wild rice crusted halibut with fava beans, roasted turnips, garlic, ginger, kanyaku, koji sauce with lemon basil and nasturtium garnish
The dish that made me weep: a fi rst course twist on a Greek salad with Dutch herring, summer vegetables (Persian cucumber, kohlrabi, more), milkweed capers, coriander blossoms, and fermented tomato coulis
Orange & poppyseed pureé, oat, bing cherry, marcona almond, goat’s milk ice cream