Le Cirque is a restaurant from the "old guard". It has been with us, NYC, for a while, catering to the rich and famous, heads of state, and foodies like me. I had a tasting menu two years ago, where I ate the best scrambled eggs in my life (topped with caviar). Last week I was invited to a lunch there, where chef Craig Hopson is cooking some delightful bites!
My dining companions and I sat in the decadent dining room with a soaring, tent-like ceiling, and ordered the $45 three-course prix fixe lunch. To start off, the bread basket at Le Cirque is excellent.
I started with the wild burgundy escargot with gruyere gnocchi, pickled fiddlehead ferns, and bottarga. This was my favorite dish of the lunch and extremely memorable. Those little gnocchi were mind-blowingly great!
My companion's marinated tuna, avocado tapenade, clementines, and sesame tuile was fresh, sweet, and a splendid appetizer.
The comté cheese souffle with mixed greens was also a nice start to our lunch.
My roasted lamb chops with pistachio gremolata and pommes purée was excellent. I loved the crunch the gremolata gave to the tender meat, and the pommes purée was some of the best I've had.
Paupiette of black cod leeks, crispy potatoes, Rocca di Frassinello sauce and filet of beef “Pot-au-Feu” with bone marrow and spring vegetables, satisfied both my companion's lunch appetites well. I had a bite of each, and they were both delectable.
To end, Floating Island “Le Cirque” , (old-fashioned style island over light vanilla cream,) Crème Brûlée “Le Cirque”, and a miniature chocolate hazelnut cake, were all simple, light, and a really nice ending to a pleasant lunch.