239 West Broadway,

New York, NY 10013

(212) 219-2777

This was my first dinner at Corton, restaurateur Drew Nieporent’s newest creation in the Tribeca space once occupied by Montrachet. Chef-Owner Paul Liebrandt offered to cook for us, and we took him up on the spot. The extensive tasting menu had plenty of highlights, most of which came later on in the meal. There is no question Liebrandt is massively talented, in fact he may be too talented at times. Each of these courses featured multiple accompaniments, more often than not served on separate dishes, which made for an awkward, cluttered table that required constant attention from the staff. Some of the accompaniments didn’t seem to add much to the dishes, if anything they detracted from the purity of the main ingredients. Still, Liebrandt did brilliantly with his meat and fish main courses, all of which were seasoned and cooked to perfection. Service of both the food and our wines was impeccable.

I took a brief tour of the kitchen after dinner and was amazed at how tiny the space is considering the intricacy of the platings, many of which are carried out with surgical precision. My sense is that with a little more restraint the cuisine could ascend to the stratosphere among New York’s top restaurants, but as they say, to each their own.

The 1985 Krug Collection was subtle and refined in its warm, smoke-tinged layers of fruit. The mousse was impeccable and refined, but the wine lost a bit of energy as it faded in the glass, reflecting my most recent experiences with this Champagne. Leflaive’s 1982 Bâtard-Montrachet was sweet, rich and honeyed. The wine showed great balance and harmony, with a sensual, oily finish that rounded out the harmonious close. Trimbach’s 1999 Riesling Clos St. Hune was the most fascinating of these whites. Blessed with superb elegance and class, the wine floated on the palate with endless layers of lime peel, spices and crushed rocks. It was magnificent on its own and even better with the food.

We had great luck with a bottle of Giacomo Conterno’s 1967 Barolo, which was one of the more massive, dense examples of this wine I have ever had. Still deeply colored with just a touch of lightening around the rim, the wine emerged from the glass with the essence of dark fruit, menthol, licorice and spices in an authoritative, masculine Barolo. Ponsot’s 1988 Clos de la Roche could not have been more different. It was an especially mid-weight, transparent Clos de la Roche endowed with expressive inner perfume in a delicate, understated style for this wine.


 “Rock Pool”; Crab, Uni, Ayogai, Grapefruit

Violet Hill Farm Egg; Tête de Cochon, Yellow Cauliflower, Serrano Gelee

 “Foie Gras Cherries”; Beet, Blackberry, Shiso

Tortellini; White Alba Truffle, Piedmont Hazelnuts, Smoke Milk

Striped Bass; Damier of Gnocci, Matsutake, Jus de l’Inde

Duck; Pumpkin, Honey, Turnip Jelly, Mead Jus

Painted Hills Beef; Fig, Comté, Black Olive Oil

Cheshire; Black Fig, Smoked Tomato

Fennel Sablé; Grape, Roasted Almond Butter, Fennel Crème

White Chocolate Palette; Cardamom, Mango, Coffee



Krug Collection



Domaine Leflaive Bâtard-Montrachet



Trimbach Riesling Clos St. Hune



Giacomo Conterno Barolo



Ponsot Clos de La Roche


[Photo and credit: Corton, New York]

--Antonio Galloni