Where to Eat 5 Classic Dishes That Defined Fine Dining
For this throwback, we are going to a more refined time; a time when people dressed up to go out to eat, when plates were garnished with excessive amounts of parsley and kale (yes, kale was a garnish), and lemon halves were wrapped in yellow cloth and tied with a green ribbon. It was all about sauces, cream, butter and more sauce. Here are five throwback dishes we are happy are still on menus.
Lobster Newberg – Delmonico’s, NY
According to the book Dining at Delmonico's, sea captain Ben Wenberg, who frequented New York City restaurant Delmonico’s, discovered a new way to cook lobsters with cream, cognac, sherry, butter and cayenne pepper. He brought the idea to the restaurant and the dish made it to the menu as Lobster à la Wenberg. After a disagreement between restaurant owner Charles Delmonico and Wenberg, the dish was removed from the menu but customers demanded it. Delmonico brought it back on the menu, changing the “wen" to “new," creating the Lobster Newberg.
Grasshopper Cocktail – Oleander, BK
This classic neon green cocktail gets its minty flavor and color from the crème de menthe. Loaded with cream, this sugary punch was a hit in the ’50s and has made its way back to cocktail menus. Oleander's version includes a solid kick of Absinthe for some extra fun.
Oysters Rockefeller – Antoine’s, New Orleans
Named after J.D. Rockefeller at New Orleans institution Antoine’s in 1899. At the time, snails were a hot item on menus but there was a shortage in shipments from Europe to the U.S. Oysters acted as a stand-in, topped with a mix of spinach, cream and bread crumbs. The modern-day version includes a splash of Pernod and other green vegetables. Antoine’s estimates that the restaurant has prepared the dish more than 5 million times.
Baked Alaska – Delmonico’s, NY
This seriously delicious dessert of ice cream encased in sponge cake and meringue was supposedly created by chef Charles Ranhofer to celebrate the U.S. purchase of Alaska from the Russians. It’s made in individual portions and is the best way to wrap up dinner.
Filet Oscar – Pacific Dining Car, L.A.
If you want indulgence, this dish is for you. Filet mignon gets topped with crab and asparagus, then coated in Béarnaise sauce. The Pacific Dining Car in Santa Monica, California, has been expertly preparing it since its opening in the 1920s.