MICHELIN Guide’s Point Of View
Secreted away in The Gallery Food Hall (a remodeled food court), finding this tricky location can feel like an adventure, albeit a glorious one. Just exit the elevator on the second floor and head for the first door on the left. The small interior is bright and noisy, warmed up by the open kitchen as well as Chef Dave Beran’s commentary and insights into his cooking. There may be banquettes, but a seat at the counter provides a necessary view into the action and preparation of intricate plates. The suited servers are well coordinated and flaunt a friendly demeanor. The cooking exudes inspiration from start to finish. The kitchen is particularly adept in its delicately steamed nuggets of lobster with a dollop of béarnaise covered in nasturtium. An effort to show seasonal flavors can seem daring in a city not known for its autumn foliage. Yet this is handled with wit and talent, through a dish of “fallen leaves” served on a square “plate” of dried birch bark and arranged with fried sweetbreads. Overall, this cuisine's vision and meticulous plating feels veritably unconfined, as it glides seamlessly from modernism to Japanese fare, with a wintry finale of coconut and chocolate pudding.