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Not bad. 

The bread course was fun and cute - the little pancake fish with seaweed butter. It really needed a touch of salt, though. A few flakes scattered on the butter for seasoning and crunch would’ve made a huge difference. 

Yellowtail, no complaints. I appreciate that the fish was a little “fishy” and showed through the more potent flavors on the plate.

Soft-shell was the best dish of the night, though like the bread it was missing a little something-something... in this case acidity. A wedge of lime on the side would have elevated it. 

The entree courses... eh. 

Bossam was a nice hunk of pork. But the alleged anchovy and horseradish on it were nowhere to be found... SO tasted them on her first slice, but nothing after so maybe they were just badly distributed. 

Crispy duck skin noodles were frankly a dud. Splurged on the truffle supplement - Chilean black, nicer than summer Burgundies. Edible, but in the way that all buttered noodles are edible. The crispy duck skin bits became not-crispy tooth-stickers as soon as they hit the warm noodles. I kind of suspected that might happen - because, obvious. I just figured maybe there was some trick the chef knew that I didn’t. Guess not. And there was an inexplicable whole chili just sitting in the bowl. What are we supposed to do with it? I took a little nibble and it had some good heat - I’d say more than a serrano, less than a habanero. Totally incongruous with the rest of the dish, and just sitting there what was the point? Were we supposed to chop it up and mix it in? I’m not doing your work for you, kitchen. Put some diced chili on the side if that’s the point. (Or don’t, since it didn’t really work anyway.)

There was enough good that I imagine I’ll be back at some point if we’re in the neighborhood. We both kind of agreed that it’s probably the kind of place where it’s better to front-load on apps. 

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So, Little Mad, located in a micro-district usually decried by regular Mouthfullers as wildly implausible as a dining destination. Very polished with great service. Amused that Sol Han is running a French brigade straight out of Escoffier, and really, he doesn't miss a beat: "Can I hear a 'Oui Chef'?"

Headcheese was very good, although I would have cracked some sea salt over it. Softshell good too (but it's not cheffy to fry it well, I can do that, really), the pea sabayon made it interesting. Pork belly was good too. 

I would recommend not eating at the bar. It is a solid block of wood. You cannot put your knees under it. Everyone was eating side saddle, which is okay if you're a couple gazing mutually into eyes, but was just uncomfortable otherwise. 

Server told me about more seasonal dishes coming up. For me personally the menu would have to change, because the entrees are very limited for anyone not eating rice or noodles in large quantities (but that's just me, I know).

Comp disclosure, a generous "splash" of the very nice 2017 Oddero Barolo.

ETA: Per Seth, I had forgotten about anchovy/horseradish accents on the pork belly, but no, I recall none.

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I don't know about that frying's not being cheffy.

I could walk into just about any spot on 7th Ave. in Brooklyn and get food that's fried more greasily and less cleanly and precisely.

I have to go to particularly good places -- or I guess your house -- to get things fried like that.

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Right, it was a cling to the side of the plate presentation, of which Wylie Dufresne was a great master. I think Wylie was skeptical that plates had a center.

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On 7/15/2021 at 7:03 PM, Wilfrid said:

Right, it was a cling to the side of the plate presentation, of which Wylie Dufresne was a great master. I think Wylie was skeptical that plates had a center.

The era of the asymmetric plates is evidently not over yet.

We had a very enjoyable meal here a few nights ago. Wonderful service, once I slowed our server down...she was very anxious to know if I'd looked at the menu yet, until I informed her that no, I need a drink first. then it was OK from there on out. In addition to the dishes @Wilfrid posted above, we also snarfed down a special lobster app; the bisque the lobster chunks were nestled in and under tasted as if it might've come from the kitchen of Le Coucou...


Lobster hiding under the peaches and scapes.

Had no problem with the yellowtail either...


The rice with mushrooms and bone marrow was nice and intense (half of it is in my fridge awaiting dinner), and perhaps better named marrow with mushrooms and rice. Chef scooped out one of the larger marrow bones I've seen lately.


Meat with confit garlic, but without its accompanying ssam party...


I did order the one dessert...


Earl grey ice with lotsa berries. Not necessary, but a good palate cleanser.


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Oh - I did ask about bar dining, as there was a solo customer back there. And was told, truthfully, that the bar was not that comfortable.

So - if they know that - perhaps a change will happen at some point.


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