Virtuoso Life - November/December 2017 - 128
Brooklyn's Grand Army typically offers four East Coast and two West
Coast options nightly.
A mignonette quintet comes in laboratory-chic vials fitted with eyedroppers, "so the customer has complete
control over the seasoning process,"
says co-owner Noah Bernamoff. Seasonal flavors may include (at left):
hot-smoked pastrami, habanero,
bamboo, an elixir of dry vermouth,
sherry, bitters, lemon and orange
peel, and sherry vinegar inspired
by the cocktail of the same name,
classic shallot, and pineapple.
In Camden, Maine, Natalie's serves
Otter Cove oysters from the Damariscotta River with local uni, a seaweed
emulsion, and nasturtium flowers
from chefs Shelby Stevens and Chris
Long's on-site garden.
British Columbia Kusshi oysters make
a dramatic arrival at Bazaar Meat by
José Andrés in Las Vegas: Staff fill
glass-domed platters with fragrant applewood smoke to season and lightly
smoke the bivalves, which are topped
off with an apple cider vinegar foam.
The New Oyster Platter, Annotated
No disrespect to classic mignonette, cocktail sauce, or a wedge of lemon, but today's oysters
demand the latest and greatest accessories, from swirling clouds of smoke and savory granitas
to mise-en-scènes of seaweed and seashells scavenged from nearby beaches.
Puget Sound; Humboldt Bay,
California; and Baja, Mexico
"Cucumber with notes
of melon sweetness."
V I RT U O S O L I F E
Sunset Beach (medium)
Washington State's Hood Canal
"Strong, meaty, and sweet -
Golden Mantle (small)
British Columbia's Sunshine Coast
"Full-flavored and creamy, with hints
of melon and cucumber and brightwhite meat."
BALL & ALBANESE
Playfully on point: Grand
Army's oyster platter.
On Orcas Island in Washington's Puget
Sound, chef-owner Jay Blackinton
opens Aelder's tasting menu with Judd
Cove oysters from 344 yards away.
"They're an excellent expression of the
terroir of our island and, specifically,
the village of Eastsound," he says. Fir
ice and fir oil, a nod to the Douglas firs
blanketing Orcas, and a bed of rocks
from Crescent Beach, just east of the
restaurant, round out the dish.