Terrific Takeout: The Milton Our Coverage Sponsored by Fresh Origins
The gorgeous Milton Salad above, and the absolutely superlative Cottage Pie below
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Of the hundreds of restaurants we’ve visited, Italian, French, and Greek are the most well-populated in terms of cuisine that we’ve published on, especially Italian, which totally dominates. However, none of those are Peachy’s heritage, and she has lived in none of those countries. Peachy Deegan is Irish. Peachy has lived in Ireland. Her dad and grandmother were tremendously proud of their Irish heritage pre-Peachy and still are, so she went to college at UCC in Cork, Ireland, on the Boston College program of course, as you have heard and ate Tangle Twisters for lunch. Her diet has improved, especially since now we’ve been to The Milton, which opened on November 6, 2014.
For years we have searched high and low for upscale Irish cuisine akin to the likings of the fantastically talented Neven Maguire whom we met through Tourism Ireland years ago, and in Manhattan, we have liked Neary’s (County Sligo) and Kings’ Carriage House (Dublin) the best. Both of those places are institutions and have been around for many, many years-48 in Jimmy’s case; we have not seen anyone as talented as co-owners Liam Moore (right, County Limerick) and Tomas Maher (left, Country Waterford) of The Milton in our generation until now. They take Irish cuisine seriously, and not only have they elevated it, but also they’ve perfected the professional Irish comfort food. The culinary endeavors of The Milton are fresh, modern and innovative and they give Ireland something to be proud of in New York. This is their inaugural feature, and we continue our St. Patrick’s Day coverage which began with another Liam-Neeson.
Of course, they had a drink with us.
As an appetizer we ordered the Truffle Chicken Nuggets, which are the haute-couture gourmet version complete with yellow beet sweet and sour sauce. They were expertly baked, and just stepped off the runway of the oven-you can see their hand on their hip. The sliced summer truffle combined with truffle oil gave these a flavor that you must try yourself. Just like you would never corrupt a superb steak with sauce, these chicken nuggets are best standalone even though the sauce was good.
For our green salad, we opted for The Milton Salad, which was a creative combination: kale, applewood smoked bacon, granny smith apple, candied walnuts and blue cheese crumble. They put the roasted apple vinaigrette on the side. Every component was fresh and in good proportion to each other; we liked the apple the best here.
As a side, we had Sauteed Kale with shallot and olive oil, and its relative lightness compared to our entree was a great balance:
While Shepherd’s Pie is traditionally lamb, Cottage Pie is traditionally beef and in this case, it is Guinness-braised short rib. The only thing better than drinking Guinness is eating Guinness. This succulent rib is deep in the bottom of the dish below the glorious mashed potato and amazing Gruyere sealing the deal on top. Grilled country bread comes to the party on the side.
Their cocktails are dangerously smooth and balanced, and Peachy ordered the Lemon over Basil, above. Composed of basil and lemon-infused gin (there is an infusion of both lemongrass and lemons) and house-made Elderflower Cordial (they take elderflower, cook it, and add water and sugar), this refreshment is light enough to be quite successful as we transition into spring. (hopefully! no more snow!)
We took a sip of the Keep the Heid (pronounced Head), which infuses roonibus tea for 3 hours with Pigs Nose Scotch (a blend), lemon, pineapple, honey, Velvet Falernum Liqueur (Italian, slight almond flavor) and angostura bitters. Its ravishing complexity lends itself to the pleasure of your palate as well.
Executive Chef David Diaz noticed our enthusiasm for serious Irish food, and graciously insisted we also try the Bangers and Mash, which were just as excellent as the Cottage Pie. For everyone that is not Irish, this means sausage and mashed potatoes. They are so motivated to be authentic at The Milton, they make their own Bangers from scratch, weekly with grilled kumato tomato, pork butt, fat back, shallots, mace, sage, pork blood and drum roll please, Thomas’s English muffins! Fontina Swiss Gruyere also is in residence on this plate.
These are all authentic Irish dishes, not watered down or Americanized, or colored green for the fun of it. This is SERIOUS, and we love that.
The Milton is Terrific Takeout and we will be looking for more excellence from this venue to come!