For 2010, I set an eating goal for myself: eat at every Michelin-starred restaurant in New York City. It’s quite a lofty goal for the year, but I’ve made it a little easier for myself; if I’ve eaten at the restaurant in the past (and blogged about it), I won’t return. To see the list of places I still have to visit, you can go to this page. I’m not sure if I can make it to Masa (it’s QUITE an expensive meal) but I still have more than 365 days to find out. To start my adventures a little early, my mom came to visit and we went to Wallse for brunch:
Wallse has two dining areas, both with really cool artwork:
While we were looking through their menu, the waiter brought along some bread and butter:
Since I was testing out the Olympus E-P1 camera (it’s pretty cool), I decided to take some test shots:
One thing I wanted to order was spätzle; my friend, Remy, said that he liked Wallse for brunch more than dinner and this was the dish he usually ordered. Since I trust Remy’s recommendations, we knew that was one dish we were going to order. The spätzle comes with braised rabbit, wild mushrooms, and tarragon:
The dish was very plain and I didn’t a taste of any rabbit at all; the dish wasn’t very large and was actually our least favorite of the day. I made the noodles at a cooking class once and they’re super fun to make (you put dough into a hopper and grate the dough over a pot of boiling water). They get their funky shapes from the dough being pushed through the hopper (or falling at different times). I wish the noodles had more taste, but I thought they were lackluster.
We also ordered Viennese Weisswurst, sweet mustard, potato-cucumber salad:
The weisswurst was a little on the plain side, but I liked the potato-cucumber salad; it reminded me of the salad they prepare at Lederhosen. The Austrian eating next to us by himself and he cut the skin of the weisswurst first and only ate the innards, but I don’t think there was any harm in eating the entire thing.
Our third dish was the Hungarian beef goulash with fresh herbed spätzle:
We were a little hesitant to order the beef goulash because we didn’t want a stew, but the waiter assured us that it was more dry than watery. The beef was very well seasoned but a little on the dry side; I would’ve preferred more sauce with the dish. The spätzle tasted exactly like the other one we ordered, even though this side dish didn’t have any meat with it.
Our favorite dish from brunch was the Wiener Schnitzel with potato-cucumber salad and lingonberries:
Wiener schnitzel, even though it sounds like it should be sausage, is a thinly sliced cutlet of veal that is lightly breaded and fried. Wallse does it particularly well because the breading is very crisp all around (not soggy on one side and crispy on the other) and the veal was particularly tender.
The two better dishes of the day (wiener schnitzel and beef goulash) were also the two more pricey dishes ($26/each). My mom and I after our brunch:
And my mom, brother, and I:
I liked Wallse and the service was steady throughout our meal, but I didn’t find the food particularly interesting or delicious. The prices, however, were pretty expensive for brunch (and I browsed the dinner menu and they’re even higher than $26 per entree). One Michelin restaurant down, many more to go.