I was first introduced to the world of David Chang when I dined at momofuku noodle bar in 2006. Other restaurants under the momofuku name (ssam bar, ko, milk bar) have gathered a bit of a cult following. I knew I had to check out má pêche (which means “mother peach”), the only restaurant of the family located outside the East Village, which opened last year. Was the schlep uptown (okay, it’s midtown, but it’s uptown to me!) worth it?
The menu at má pêche changes daily, and I was excited to see what it held in store for me. I admit I was a bit weary because rumor has it that some momofuku restaurants frown upon cameras, but no dirty glares or withering glances fell upon me – phew! Otherwise I’d have to resort to my old Blackberry camera, and let’s face it – my Blackberry cam sucks.
But I digress.
I perused the menu and briefly considered the lunch prix fixe:
but ultimately decided to order from the a la carte menu, for several reasons – one being: I wanted to order from the SANDWICHERIE menu. I mean, come on! How fun is that to say? Try it out loud, you won’t regret it. Also as an aside – I thought legumes (bottom of menu) were beans. Aren’t carrots and potatoes tubers? Someone more versed in veggies than I, please feel free to chime in.
To start, my eating buddy and I ordered the Long Island Fluke with blood orange, avocado and black rice (first photo). Prepared ceviche style, this the fluke was fresh and light, with just a touch of tangy citrus from the blood orange. The avocado provided a creamy counterpoint and the black rice was genius! Crunchy, nutty and flavorful yet not overpowering, it was the highlight of this dish. Yum.
We also ordered the Mushroom & Asparagus with watercress, goat cheese and pistachio:
The accompanying sauce was just the slightest bit tangy, which played off the tender asparagus and mild mushroom perfectly. The goat cheese absorbed the sauce’s flavor and the sauteed watercress was perfectly crisp. Another choice appetizer (or “petite assiette” as they call it. I really don’t know what that means, but I have a feeling my guess of “small butts” is incorrect).
For my main, I ordered the Banh Mi Maison from the SANDWICHERIE!!! menu:
Ok, while it was a perfectly good banh mi, I admit it wasn’t the best banh mi I’ve ever had. I’d even dare to venture that my $6 go-to banh mi is slightly better. Don’t get me wrong, I still finished this sammie, but considering how yummilicious the two starters were, I was a tad disappointed.
OF COURSE we had to save room for dessert, since we walked through the milk bar on the way in (hello, cereal milk and compost cookie – come to mama!). And I knew exactly what I needed to order.
Ladies and gentlemen, meet the crack pie.
You guys, this pie is 100% deserving of its controversial name. Now, I don’t have any experience with its namesake illegal substance, but this dessert had, according to its menu, an “oat crust and gooey butter filling.” Gooey butter, people!! Strangely addictive, I couldn’t stop at just one bite and mourned the whittling down of this all-too-small slice of heaven. And yes, I sobbed a little when I saw the piece I got was missing a bit of the oat crust right at the tip. Wah. I wanted to eat more and more of this. And more. It is….sogood.
Of course since there were two of us, we needed a second dessert. Our waiter suggested the intriguing corn cookie:
Also quite addictive, the corn cookie was reminiscent of the very top crispy/chewy layer of a sweet corn muffin. To paraphrase an old Seinfeld episode, if you popped the top off a kerbillion corn muffins, sampled them all, and picked the best one, you would have the corn cookie. Delish!
My experience at má pêche started strong, wavered slightly in the middle, but finished with a resounding dessert WIN! If you ever find yourself in the NYC midtown area, definitely give má pêche a try! And, errrr…can you pick me up a slice of the crack pie while you’re at it? 😉
15 W. 56th St. (btw 5th/6th Ave)
Yummy starters, and their desserts? OMG.