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“What's your philosophy of "value"?” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Eleven Madison Park

Eleven Madison Park
Ranked #57 of 13,479 Restaurants in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, European
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Business meetings
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Full Bar, Private Dining, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Dining style: Fine Dining
Neighborhood: Flatiron District
Cross street: 24th Street
Transit: N or R to 23rd st. & Broadway, or take the 6 to 23th St. & Park Ave.
Description: Eleven Madison Park is located in a landmark art deco building with soaring 35-foot ceilings and a view of Madison Square Park. We offer an intimate bar featuring 35 wines by the glass as well as seasonal classic and proprietary cocktails. The second floor private dining rooms also feature views of Madison Square Park. For both lunch and dinner, Eleven Madison Park offers a Tasting Menu for $195.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
126 reviews
80 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“What's your philosophy of "value"?”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 15, 2013 via mobile

Had I not heard from my business colleagues how lifetime amazing this place was, I may have had a different experience. Every taste was sublime, unusual, surprising, but it was just that, an ethereal, passing "taste." So while it was beautifully orchestrated and presented, there's something about a meal that should leave you satisfied or satiated, and this felt like tantalizing. No regrets, recommend if you've got the dough to spend, but it put forth the question on what the value of a culinary experience is. Once you taste something unlike anything you've ever had, the inclination is to want more of the same. We were teased by the "sturgeon soup" in the eggshell, a mere few drops; the smoked fish with the cream cheese, the melt-in-your mouth lamb; gone in instants! It's almost painful to recount how delightful it all was, how rich the wine pairings were. True, all 3 of us left full, but not satisfied, and the credit card bill that will linger on! Enough existentialism. Try once--see what you think.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank ChicagoTexas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Level Contributor
52 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“If I could give it a ten, I would”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 12, 2013

I read some of the negative reviews. I can only deduce that these people are desperate to give added value to their own lives by refusing to accept that anything might rise to a level of perfection that they themselves cannot achieve.
I can honestly say that I have never had a more remarkable culinary experience. Dining at this restaurant is in a different class from eating a meal. It is like going to a museum and viewing a range of paintings, some of which are spectacular and others, perhaps not to your taste, but superb nonetheless. The key is to open your mind and palate to the experience and to appreciate even that which might not, at first, appeal to your sensibilities. One does not expand one's horizons but for experimentation.
I understand that many people might not like Sea Urchin, but when combined with Cantaloupe and Conch, a combination of ingredients that defies any logic, and when frozen with nitrogen into a delicate snow, one can only marvel at the creativity that conceives such a dish.
Sixteen courses, each one with its own unique character, served by a wonderfully efficient and friendly staff, devoid of pretense or attitude and completely devoted to your satisfaction. As each dish arrived I became increasingly astounded that one restaurant could produce so many variations, each one an aesthetic triumph, all leading one to the next like the movements of a Bach Suite. One might argue that there was an overuse of nitrogen, but I found the rephrasing of the technique, like a Wagnerian leitmotif, to be one of the elements that held the entire work together; part of the overall structure.
The room is elegant and perfectly maintained, the dishes and serving pieces beautifully matched with the food that is being presented. I cannot say enough about the service, for in a setting that could easily border on intimidation, every employee was helpful, knowledgeable, and genuinely pleasant. At no time did I ever feel that I was being patronized or that the people taking care of me had any desire to be anywhere but in that restaurant. Yes, it is expensive, but if you take the time to go into the kitchen and watch the sea of chefs attending to the choreography of your meal, look at the army of servers moving about, and seriously consider the ingredients and artistic brilliance to which you are introduced, I submit that, if you can afford it, it is well worth the money. One always has the option of not drinking alcohol. As to the timing, I had not prepared for a four hour event but found that I was not put off in the least. Probably it is advisable to put aside a full afternoon or evening and go with someone whom you enjoy. Given that type of love and/or camaraderie, four hours passes entirely too quickly.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank hobbitnj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Old Saybrook, Connecticut
Level Contributor
22 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Fantastic experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 11, 2013

There are some fine restaurants around the area in which I live but nothing compares to this place. We were wowed across the board. Service was spot on, our meals were extraordinary. Right up there with Gary Danko

  • Visited May 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank AllyBens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
270 reviews
181 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 299 helpful votes
“Fine Dinning as a Marathon Event”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 9, 2013

We dined here in early July 2013. The food is impressive, well prepared, well presented and delicious. The atmosphere is beautiful, sleek and sophisticated. The service was friendly and very professional. There is a great wine list.

The problem is: this is a one trick pony. My mistake was not realizing that they had changed menus and moved to a “tasting menu” vs. an a’la carte menu. There were 15 courses plus cocktails. It is a lot of food to cover and it takes a lot of time to do so.

I’ve done this kind of tasting menus before. If you are game and interested in trying some creative foods and the chef and kitchen are good and interesting – as they are here – than it can be quite a dinning and gastronomic experience. The trouble is that it is almost too too much, and why would you go more than once? Sure, the menu will change but the essential “experience” is the same and it isn’t as if you try something unique and can readily return to the restaurant and have it again. It might not be on the menu again... and you can't just go in and order course six (and more of course six).

While everything was very good and even great, I started to lose interest around course 10 or eleven. There is also a “gimmicky” aspect to the service. For example, after the main (a choice of lamb or duck… the lamb was fantastic) they served a picnic basket for us to “explore.” It included a bottle of some locally sourced beer, cheese whose rind had been washed “daily” in that beer for a matter of weeks, pickled strawberries and beer-based mustard and pretzels. Fun if a bit pretentious in a knowing “retro” kind of way.

Also, this was course 11 – there were still four more to go.

All in all, most of the courses were hits. There was nothing that I didn't or wouldn't try and I am glad I tried them all. There was even a surprise ending at the conclusion of course 15 (a little, fun parlor trick). But, again, it was course 15! At that point, we’d been there for nearly (maybe more than) four hours and the thought of even one more gastronomic delight just wasn't spurring us on to new levels of enthusiasm. Frankly, I wanted out and bed.

I've nothing to fault here. Everything, food to service to atmosphere was terrific (and you pay a lot for it!). I’m glad I went. I enjoyed my meal. I won’t likely ever go back and I would be very cautious about to whom I recommended this place.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank DCroamer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town
Level Contributor
41 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
“Easy to like, a bit too long”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 9, 2013

We were not planning to be there, but the circumstances of meeting 2 fabulous and exuberant italians that went all the trouble to go there and insure a table for us made it a not to refuse opportunity.

I was very pleasantly surprised. I was expecting some very classic grand style, posh or “look at me, I come to be seen” atmosphere and food alike.
None of that. Yes the place is grandiose, a large large large dining palace, but the atmosphere is relax, i felt everybody was there as they wanted to feel and a joyful somewhat Gatsby like ambiance prevailed.

The experience was 24 dishes following a somewhat classical trajectory. But the components were all but classical. Hollywood or even Bollywood mise en scene introduced each of them in inventive and varied fashion. Strings of precise information completing the sensual experience of food.
Neither too much, certainly not too little. A little too long for me. Although I must confess the 4h30 seemed much shorter, I would probably have preferred at least 30-45 min less and felt the rhythm had a dip before the mains.

Some of the courses justifying the extreme laudative comments we had read about 11 madison that puts it at the top of many published list.
Some of these marvels will remain forever in my mind as the best of their kind I ever tried (WAOW the chowder and the brioche bread, WOAW the carrot tartare prepared at you table) or as solid 3 star worthy components (WAOW the rhubarb jelly aspargus and bisque, WOAW the little chocolate pretzel at the end...) but not all was the same undisputed 3 star standard.

I was also very impressed by the presence of the head chef Daniel Humm that came personally to introduce himself and thank us for our interest in his food. Standing at our table, he gave us the personal feeling he was interested in our story for the 100 or so seconds he stayed there. What a humility lesson the under-chef-uber-furher from the Brooklyn Fare should take there, from pre-grade1 (see my review to have a taste of the distaste i had for this UN-Fare).

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank jh-pb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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