The Whisk and Ladle is a private supper club in Williamsburg, near the river, in one of those buildings where magical shit still happens. I went there recently one snowy night with three of the most attractive and brilliant people in Brooklyn, trying to pull my weight. Christina twinkled, Daniel did a dance, Allie entranced everyone with her veiled dinner party hat.
We were greeted first by Mark, a charming host who catered to all our whims and inquiries. In the open kitchen we met Danielle, spatula in hand and a large silver cleaver dangling from her neck. Amazing placement. She must be responsible for the magic. Other “staff” include a changing roster of cooks (we had one from Momofuku) with changing culinary themes.
The place itself is a mélange of good lighting and great smells. A bi-level loft, the interior is both cozy and spacious, with most of the bedrooms upstairs and the entertainment downstairs…unless you’re a naughty customer (I was upstairs).
Cocktails are served at a small bar that fancies a bit of cocktology… rye, rum, tequila concoctions. There were little squishy rice cakes covered in a slightly spicy sauce, absurdly simple but great. Everyone seemed happily buzzed during the long cocktail hour, om noming appetizers and making new friends.
Amid the mingling, Mark showed us some kind of cooking device that looked like a science experiment. It was cooking a sealed cut of beef in gently bubbling, cool water. Something about ions. The idea was that the beef never touched air and thus did not oxidize until the moment it was served. The whole thing made me feel like a buck-toothed Klingon.
By the time we were seated and served wine people were starving and sizing each other up. We sat at a table with two girls who seemed ready to eat each other. One had lost her voice and the other spoke in strange rhythms I did not easily comprehend. My companions did most of the talking but after a time I developed a rapport with the voiceless girl next to me, gesturing and tying to “sign” things while becoming increasingly intoxicated. The soup came just in time, but was a single wonton in a spoonful of broth. Though incredibly delicious, it served only to wet appetites that were already drenched.
Read the rest of this entry »