The prix fixe menu at L’Espalier changes with the season, which can make it difficult to choose the five best things to order in advance. Thankfully, we’ve had the pleasure of enjoying the upscale French-influenced cuisine for years, so we can recommend a few must-haves if they make an appearance during your visit:
1. The cheese course. L’Espalier’s long-time maitre d’ Louis Risoli is a cheese aficionado, and he is responsible for elevating the cheese program at this French restaurant to being one of the best in the country. With cheeses sourced from around the world, you’re bound to find something you’ve never tried before. Risoli can walk you through each cheese’s history and flavor to match you with a fromage you’ll love. The best part? You can purchase many of the selections from the restaurant to take home with you.
2. Splurge on a few ounces or shells. The caviar and oysters are a menu must-have, so be sure to indulge. The Island Creek Oysters, sourced from nearby Cape Cod, are our favorites and are always featured at L’Espalier.
3. Look for the lamb. The herb-crusted loin of lamb is one of the restaurant’s standout dishes, and it’s often featured as one of the main courses at dinner. It’s a petite, perfectly seared morsel of succulent lamb, and one you’ll never forget.
4. Feast on foie gras. L’Espalier’s menu is based on French cuisine and concepts, so you can be sure that foie gras will make an appearance on any given evening. Keep an eye out for creations such as the Hudson Valley foie gras torchon with anise hyssop-infused plums, pistachio, hibiscus gelee and black walnut brioche.
5. End the night sweetly. There’s no reason to skip dessert at L’Espalier, so we recommend you dive right into the signature desserts, such as the chocolate decadence with blood orange fluid gel, wafer streusel and fruit of cacao. Paired with a good port, this dessert will leave a lasting impression.
Photo courtesy of L’Espalier