Summer is slipping away, so it’s prime time to enjoy chef Paul Liebrandt’s market bounty at brand-new The Elm. His summer garden ($48) is not just some simple salad, however. It is a substantial, cooked entrée, composed of more than 40 vegetables and fruits, served to share in a sturdy cocotte. It’s also a lesson in how varied veggies and fruits can be. The first bite may be buttery. The next, slightly bitter. The next, sweet. Stir in a spicy roasted tomato vinaigrette, and the profile alters again. The mix changes depending on what’s available at the market that day, but it can include some lesser-known crops such as fairy tale eggplant, baby Tokyo turnips and viola pansies, along with the familiar, such as roasted romaine hearts, red carrots, hen-of-the-wood mushrooms and green summer onions. The assorted colors and shapes make the dish as lovely to behold as to eat.
The restaurant, opened in July 2013, is set in the stylish King & Grove Hotel in Williamsburg. It comprises the hotel’s basement level, with an open kitchen and a vast dining room where glass, steel and concrete converge for an industrial-chic ambiance. Solid wooden tables feature demarcations of the materials used to build them: ash bleeds into walnut into chestnut and elm, of course. A cocktail bar, Upper Elm, sits at the top of the hotel tower, offering commanding Brooklyn and Manhattan views. There’s also a menu available at the pool.
Chef Paul Liebrandt made big news recently with the announcement that he was leaving his Michelin-starred Tribeca restaurant, Corton, to focus on The Elm project. So while the seasons, and its bounty, may pass, diners can at least count on the chef being rooted in one kitchen for now.
160 N. 12th St.