and then there were six…

There is much rejoicing in the House of Humm – indeed, the entire Meyer Milky Way – at this hour.  Tonight, Eleven Madison Park’s status as one of the finest eating establishments in New York city is (finally) blessed by outgoing New York Times restaurant critic, Frank Bruni.  (CLICK HERE for the article.)  The eleventh-hour elevation has materialized.

While Mr. Bruni calls the restaurant’s progress under Daniel Humm’s stewardship “A Daring Rise to the Top,” I might add that it a was a graceful one as well.  I can’t think of any other New York restaurant that has moved with the sure-footed and steady stride that Eleven Madison Park has over the past few years.  It is not bumptious.  It does not envy.  It has simply focused on giving its best at every turn without wanting more. And now its due has come.

Over the course of Mr. Bruni’s tenure, he’s re-confirmed the status of all of the four-stars that he inherited – Daniel, Jean Georges, and le Bernardin.  He added per se and masa to that group when they opened.  Now he adds one more.  And with this one, I think he makes his most significant comment on the state of four-star dining today:

“Eleven Madison Park provides much of the ceremony and pampering associated with fine dining at its most traditional in a way that’s louder, looser and more in sync with most diners’ temperaments.”

My post two weeks ago can hardly be called a prediction.  Indeed, nothing I said then has changed now, except that Mr. Bruni has finally come to fall in love with the restaurant the way I did when I first set my eyes on it in 2007.

Congratulations to Chef Humm, Danny Meyer, John Ragan (a fellow hometown boy), Will Guidera, and the staff at Eleven Madison Park.  I’m sorry I cannot be there right now to help celebrate this happy occasion.  As always, I look forward to my next meal in your company.

~ by ulterior epicure on August 11, 2009.

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