Dining Out: Michelin Star Taste on a Pizza Hut Budget


By Allison Russo

I consider myself a foodie in the sense that I go to Smorgasburg occasionally and like to buy produce at the Union Square Farmers Market. So when I had the opportunity to eat at Jean-Georges, I couldn’t pass it up — but this was a kind of next-level foodie-ism that I’d never experienced, and couldn’t possibly have prepared myself for. I’m talking three Michelin stars, and multiple four-star ratings from the New York Times.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with this Asian-inspired, French restaurant, it’s located in Trump Tower facing Central Park and Columbus Circle. Floor to ceiling windows offer incredible views, and luxe seating keeps you comfortable for the full dining experience, which took over two hours.

Dinner is served as a selection of three courses, with plenty of other bites coming in between. One employee has the sole duty of circulating with a platter of six kinds of bread. The meal begins with an amuse bouche, a small selection of appetizers including fruits and cheeses, before the first course arrives. I ordered the goat cheese gnocchi, which was the best thing I ate all night (besides dessert). It came topped with fried artichokes and served with a lemon-olive oil dressing. I also tried the peekytoe crab salad, which was a bit disappointing — it was served with a savory honeydew melon gazpacho, which was more like a sorbet. For my main entrée, I had the black sea bass, which was cooked perfectly. The top was crusted with nuts, and it came in a delicious broth.

Dessert was the true star of the show. In between dinner and dessert, they brought bites of lemon and berry sorbet as palate cleansers, served on a silver tree. I ordered the chocolate dessert tasting, which included white chocolate ice cream, a chocolate tart with cassis jam, chocolate lava cake served with vanilla ice cream and a hazelnut milk chocolate candy topped with 14 carat gold. After all of this, a selection of macarons, candied ginger and chocolates were brought to the table. And after that, someone came around with an apothecary jar filled with strips of marshmallow. She asked if we would like freshly cut, homemade vanilla bean marshmallow, and after nodding (obviously), she snipped several cubes with golden scissors.
While the food was very good, I feel it’s a bit overpriced. Expect to drop close to $300 for dinner for two. The service is as good — if not better than — the meal. The waitress had the answers to all of my questions without skipping a beat, my glass was never lacking ice water and there was always some kind of food in front of me. Eating at Jean-Georges is like watching an impeccably choreographed dance, staged in the most beautiful restaurant I’ve ever dined in.