by Cynthia Sin-Yi Cheng
May 19, 2010
Eleven Madison Park
11 Madison Ave
@ 24th St
New York, NY 10010
I adore the wine list at Eleven Madison Park, but there is nothing more I could report that would be newsworthy. John Ragan’s list is unbeatable. Some recent satiated cravings included the 99 Jacques Selosse and 05 Nicolas Joly Clos de la Coulée de Serrant. Enough said.
On a recent trip, however, I discovered something I would rarely pay attention to: the non-alcoholic selection. Perusing the list, what caught my eye in this much-overlooked section was the Orange Julius. Celia and I grew up on the original fast-food Orange Julius when we lived in Hawaii, so all that artificial taste holds a dear place in our hearts. Eleven Madison’s version, much more delicate and tasty, is made of orange juice, cream, orange blossom, honey and sparkling mineral water ($8).
The Cheng Sisters are not the only ones stuck on their childhood loves. William Guidara, Eleven Madison’s gracious general manager, still drinks Coke every day. He shares, “I have always loved coke, ever since I was a kid. I don’t eat a ton of junk food. I’ve left most of that behind, but not coke…Not sure I ever will.” In honor of Will’s Coke addiction, Leo Robitscheck, head bartender at Eleven Madison, concocted the Coke Float made with white tea, licorice, house-made grenadine, egg yolk, and Coca-Cola ($8). For a non-Coke fan like myself, it exceeded my expectations. I liked the dark flavors verging on coffee and dark chocolate, and the egg yolk added just the right touch of foam.
Who knew my craving for Coulée de Serrant would lead me to discover the other goodies behind the bar at the New York Relais & Châteaux gem, Eleven Madison. This proves that long hours at the bar are never wasted.