Tavern on the Green has been ripped to shreds since it reopened earlier this year. The classic New York restaurant was panned by critics for being boring and complacent in a city where the culinary arts are blood sport.
Eater’s Ryan Sutton said that if you go to Tavern, “you’ll have spent $US32 on what is surely one the worst things anyone can eat outside of Rikers.”
Desperate times call for desperate measures.
Tavern on the Green has hired legendary chef Jeremiah Tower out of retirement in Mexico to helm the restaurant. He told Toqueland that he wants to make the food more like April Bloomfield’s red hot restaurant, The Breslin.
It’s also said that he prepared five dishes in just seven minutes during his interview.
Tower, along with Wolfgang Puck and others, is known for being one of the founders of “California cuisine” culinary style back in the 1980s.
He’s also known for wild antics that make Anthony Bourdain look like Julia Child.
Grub Street did an amazing roundup of ten tales from Tower’s drug addled, rock star days. He once flew an employee to Paris just to prove how wonderful French chicken is. At Harvard, where he got his undergrad and graduate degrees, he used to make famous marijuana consommé, which contained “chicken stock, fresh basil, sea salt, pepper, and ‘1 packed cup marijuana stems and seeds.”
And then there’s this (from Grub Street):
Menus for themed dinners got more and more unhinged as the drugs and free love took hold at Chez Panisse. One of the best: a “drugged and sodomized” leg of lamb injected with a syringe of Madeira and tangerine juice. Tower reportedly refused to address one customer’s complaint over another leg of lamb, which resulted in an intimidated waiter returning to the dining room and delivering this line: “The chef says to tell you, ‘Tough sh-t.'”
So at least it won’t be boring in Tavern’s kitchen.