Exclusive: The Alchemist Chef on Multi-Sensory, Molecular Menu
September 20, 2013 | by LIANA LOZADA | Food & Drink News
Dinner goes multi-sensory at The Alchemist, opening this October.
Alchemy: "An inexplicable or mysterious transmuting," says Merriam-Webster. How does that apply to food? We'll find out soon, as chef Christophe Chastang readies to open The Alchemist in Midtown this October. With two seatings per night and two multi-sensory degustation menus ($90, five-course; $125, seven-course), the 50-seat restaurant will focus on nouvelle cuisine.
Take the "Forest Spirit," The Alchemist's signature dessert—accessorized with an iPod. “The purpose of the dessert is to get the customer impregnated by the forest using sight, smell, and sound,” explains Chastang. “The compilation of sensory stimuli should transport the diner into a different ambiance."
And dessert won’t be the only course plated with theatrics. “We will also be using nitrogen as a signature element in two dishes for this season’s menu. The nitro Key lime and matcha tea meringue starter and the tomato in its icy shell, in which the tomato is enveloped in an icy tomato water sphere, they are very cool . . . We are bringing a show to every table.
Chastang considers The Alchemist to be a canvas for his "personality and work." Some of the restaurants that inspire his thinking on food and service are Heston Blumenthal's The Fat Duck, in London, and France's L’Arnsbourg—both Michelin-starred and world renowned.
“I want each patron to take home their interpretation of the subtleties we tried to create through the mix of new flavors and textures, and the pleasure triggered by their senses. We will continue to strive to making each dish, every season, a sensory adventure,” says Chastang. That's certainly something to look forward to. 3252 Buena Vista Ave., Suite 118, Miami
Go behind the scenes with Elle Macpherson during her Ocean Drive photo shoot.