Our Kitchen is Bigger Than Yours

I loved everything about Brooklyn Fare (the pop-up restaurant attached to a grocery store), starting with the sign on their window, “Our Kitchen is Bigger than Yours…” It’s just a wonderful feeling to sit in the chef’s kitchen and eat as Cesar Ramirez (formerly of Bouley) prepares the food in front of you, being the only group in the kitchen, knowing that undivided attention is gifted to you for several hours.

Cesar Plating

It takes a while to get reservations (718-243-0050) at Brooklyn Fare, especially if you want to book the whole space, but I really enjoyed having my friends be the other 9 people. It also helps when one is a fabulous photographer. You’ll see the ones marked “Edmund Song Photography” are superior pictures to mine.

Chef Cesar Ramirez

It’s BYOB so we all brought and shared a wonderful variety of wines. It’s a relaxing atmosphere where you can ask Cesar (the chef) questions and really get to know him. It’s a priceless experience.

For one, he’s got a thing for dishes, which are lined up before dinner starts. He imports most of them from France and each one shows off a different canapes, 11 before the formal dinner even starts!

dishes 3

Before I forget, there’s several baskets of fresh bread on the table for you to grab as you wish.

basket of bread

Cesar started by dividing a butternut squash soup into glasses with a high-tech funnel.

butternut squash soup

A rich dab of yogurt foam added tang to the sweet fall butternut squash.

butternut squash and greek yogurt 2

The smoky foie gras macaron is the perfect amuse. One bite that is full of lightness and richness that dissolves in one bite.

smoky foie macaron

Anchovy sitting on bread with a thin crisp of caramelized sugar. This had Angie, a non-anchovy fan, completely turned around, while I was just plain in love with the freshness of the fish, and the genius of the slim candy coating that only added a drop of sweetness. This was the first to get exclamations of “favorite” from several people.

anchovy with Caramel

The Baccalau fritter was the most perfect sphere, sitting in a tartare sauce.


The Sardine and Sage tucked into a potato crisp shows off such refined detail workmanship. This macro picture is deceiving because it’s only really about 1.5″ long. How did they ever tuck the fish and herb into that potato?

sardine and sage in potato crisp 2

The crab dumpling wasn’t distinctly crab, but the kataif added a nice light crunch, while the creamy dill sauce rounded out the Greek inspired flavors.

Crab and Kataif credit Eddie Song

Kumomoto, Uni, and Watermelon is both briny and refreshing. Like many of these canapes, the one bite wonder was gone before you really knew what you just ate. The fleeting moments left us all wanting like hungry monsters.

Kumomoto, uni, watermelon

A disk of salmon topped with Roe, sat on some apple and celery root, drizzled with Vanilla Sauce. So unique, it was the next to get cheers of “favorite”.

salmon and roe, apple and celery root, vanilla 2

Blue Fin Tuna Belly, Foie Gras, Mustard Mayo, a fat party going on! This was yet another “favorite”.

mustard, tuna belly, foie gras

The Veal Fritter was probably my least favorite. It actually tasted a tad fishy.

veal fritter

We can’t remember what the layers of cream were in here but you can see the generous pile of black truffle. which of course riled up another round of “favorite” screams. The serving dish was also a “favorite” which works with a magnet to hold the cup at that angle.

creams with black truffle

We were now ready to start the main courses, five of them, starting with Kampachi, Beluga Caviar, and super thin whisps of fried leeks.

Kampachi, Beluga Caviar, Fried Leeks

A seared day boat scallop is under that beautiful garden of chestnut crisps (baked) and pea shoots.

Scallop, Chestnut, Pea Shooots

A perfectly cooked Medai on top of black trumpet mushrooms and endive.

Medai with endive and black trumpet mushrooms 2

The giant langoustine was paired with a veal ravioli. We all watched as they assembled this gorgeous plate. (Pictured here is Juan Leon, the sous chef.)

plating 3 plating 4

…and painted with a parsley sauce.

Langoustine and Veal Ravioli 3

I got a perfect piece of medium rare Ribeye, while some others got somewhat tendonous pieces. Chef Cesar broak down his thought behind this, calling it so simple: Steak is often served with parmesan and black pepper so instead here is a parmesan cream underneath with a parmesan foam on top and the peppery-ness come from the baby watercress. Yea, not so simple.

Rib Eye with Parmesan foam

Lon asked is he could have the bone.

Lon chewing on Bone

By the end, you feel like you know Chef Ramirez, and it is undeniable that he puts himself in his cooking. It is such an honor to eat at the chef’s table and such a treat to be served by such a talented chef.

Cesar serving my plate

We ended with a beautiful dessert, a Chocolate Tangerine Torte with Raspberry Sauce and Vanilla Bean Semi Freddo. Lon and I are not fans of the chocolate and orange combo but others were happy to eat my portion, while I was completely satisfied with the concentration of flavor in the berries and creamy vanilla.

Chocolate Tangerine Cake 2

We all had so much fun. I got many thank you’s for planning this event, and for that I have to thank Chef Cesar Ramirez and his staff, which made this an evening to remember. For $95, Chef Ramirez said that there is no better deal in town, and I couldn’t agree more. I called for future reservations the next day. BTW, sometimes you can catch cancellations so just try. Heidi, who coordinates, is wonderful, making this whole experience better as well. Lastly, my friends all begged me not to post about Brooklyn Fare, wanting to keep this a secret, but I couldn’t do that. My mission is to spread good food everywhere and this is damn good food.

group picture at Brooklyn Fare

posted by jessica at 06:46 PM Filed under Favorites, Fusion or Mixed, Restaurants. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.