Diners at L’Ecole can fancy themselves foodie talent scouts. The French name only thinly veils that it’s a restaurant run by the students and faculty of the terrific International Culinary Center (ICC). Due to the skill of the apprentices and their mentors (the ICC features deans and instructors such as Jacques Pepin and Jose Andres), this restaurant is one of NYC’s most overlooked culinary gems. The food is expertly prepared and reservations are easy to come by. And, you may be the first to experience the dish of a future David Bouley.
In addition to launching chefs on their potentially brilliant careers, L’Ecole also features noteworthy dishes that are stars in their own right. This summer’s standout — the rare Fourchu lobster, a luxurious variety from the waters of Nova Scotia that is settling in at L’Ecole for the summer semester. Often hailed as the “Rolls Royce” of crustaceans, the Fourchu lobster has a rich, almost fatty, and complex flavor that some compare to Wagyu beef.
The lobster is served during lunch ($30 prix-fixe for three courses) and dinner ($39.50 3-course prix-fixe) and is offered in various forms: in a lobster roll with French fries ($12 supplement); in a steamed lobster platter with fries and side salad ($18 supplement); as well as well as in daily specials.
New Yorkers have Dorothy Cann Hamilton, the ICC’s CEO and founder, to thank for introducing these lobsters to L’Ecole. She champions the coveted crustaceans as they hail from her homeland (her grandfather was born in Fourchu, Nova Scotia).
Now you know just where to celebrate National Lobster Day, which happens to be tomorrow, June 15. The Fourchu lobsters, however, will be served at L’Ecole through August.